The 'SP-445' is a compact 4x5 sheet film processing system from 'Stearman Press LLC'.

The tank can develop 4 sheets at a time and after development and fixation, the films can be washed inside the SP-445 tank.


To accompanion this tank development system, I decided to make a DIY force film washer. The washer allow me to conveniently transfer the SP-445 sheet film holders directly from the dev tank and into the film washer. Assuming you have spare film holders, the dev tank can then be given a quick rinse in order to be ready for developing a next batch of films (while the first batch is still in the film washing tank).




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For darkroom enthusiasts that wishes to experiment a little bit, mixing their own chemicals is perhaps one route to explore.

To begin with, the No 1 resource of information on this topic is 'The Darkroom Cookbook' by Stephen G. Anchell. A short review of this book (in Swedish) can be found here and on many other places on Internet. To find general information on a chemical, I have found that Wikipedia is an excellent choice, or perhaps

However, getting hold on the chemicals that is needed is not as easy (any longer).

And if you are living in Sweden...

From my experience, getting hold on raw chemicals is not straight forward if you are living in Sweden. There are some major providers such as e.g. Sigma-Aldrich and Merck, but they only accept orders from organizations. There are also companies such as Sagitta, but they also do not sell chemicals to private persons (Although they do have other nice lab equipments which you can buy from there) .

The best option seems to be to buy from e-bay. There are several traders within EU that sell chemicals in small amount and to private persons. Some e-bay stores even specialize in chemistry for photography. Be aware though, there might be import- or other restrictions on the chemical you are looking for. Swedish official sources to find more information on this  include and (Kemikalieinspektionen). Kemikalieinspektionen also provide a list of usefull databases, see


Depending on the chemical you are looking for, I have found that your ordinary grocery- or hardware- store might be an option. Through some detective work I have been able to identify the following chemicals (in "pure" form") in ordinary daily use products.


Name (EN) Name (SE) CAS Trade Name Where to find For use in
Acetic acid Ättika    Perstorps ättika grocery stores Stop bath
Sodium thiosulfate Natriumtiosulfat  7772-98-7 Nitor sänker klor (#226844) hardware store Plain hypo (i.e. fixer)
Sodium bisulfate Natriumvätesulfat (=natriumbisulfat, NaHSO_4)  7681-38-1 Nitor sänker pH (#290205) hardware store e.g. in stop baths
Sodium carbonate Natriumkarbonat  497-19-8 Nitor höjer pH (#290208),
also as ordinary washing soda (SE "målarsoda")
hardware store Accelerator for use in developer
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Landskapsbild ifrån Hammershus, Bornholm, en mulen sommardag 2008. Regnet kom en stund senare...

Matrial och utrustning

Kamera: Nikon F90 (småbild), 50mm, rödfilter.

Film: Ilford FP4+ (EI 125), framkallad i Aculux 3.

Kopia: Adox MCC 110, framkallad i LPD (1+3)


I mörkrummet har jag efterlyst molnen något för att få fram den tydligare. Även förgrunden i bildens nedre kant har mörkats ned något. Bilden som visas här är alltså en avfotograferad papperskopia.



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This article is about the construction of a 'Do It Youself' (DIY) f-stop darkroom timer.


Some time ago I decided to find a replacement for my old mechanical darkroom timer. I was immidiately suprized by the cost of buying a new one, so I decided to build my own instead. Of course, one seldoms earn any great money on such decision, but it is a creative process and one ends up with a device tailored for ones needs.

Some criterions that were important for me while sketching on the design were:

  • a nice price for value
  • feature rich
  • easily upgradeable
  • easy to operate
  • compact in size

At the time of writing this article, my timer has the following features:

  • f-stop timer mode
  • test strip mode
  • burn mode
  • manual exposure mode
  • foot-pedal switch
  • metronome

The main unit can be seen in Figure 1 below:

f-stop timer

Figure 1: The f-stop timer main unit

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Eddie Ephraums, Creative Elements, Voyageur Press, 2001
(168 sidor, ca 175 kr)fc_CreativeElements

Detta är en favorit i bokhyllan!



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