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The Results Are In

July 17, 2017

After a heart stopping moment as I scrolled down the seemingly never ending screen to find my student id number I literally cried with joy upon finding out that not only did I pass my degree but I smashed it, walking away with a much coveted (by me) First. 

 

 

Cue the celebrations and Cheshire Cat grin that I have not been able to wipe off my face since. 

 

Now in my mind, something this monumental deserves a reward and so I headed to a website I've been frequenting and with only a smidgen of trepidation ordered myself one of these:

 

 

 

It's a Stearman Press SP 455 5x4 film hand developing tank. I've spent the last month researching the best hand developing tanks and time and time again I have come back to this because I believe it ticks all my boxes:

 

1. It's compact so won't take up too much room in the dark room.

2. Also because it's small it doesn't use a boat load of chemicals (so in the long run it should cost me less).

3. It's light tight meaning I only have to work in compete darkness to load the films into the tank.

4. It's portable - I can take it along with my changing bag anywhere I please.

5. Its appears simple to load - in fact its pretty much the same as loading a dark slide.

 

Given my budget and the size of my darkroom, I knew I could'n't manage deep tanks and I had looked into the Mod54 but at the end of the day, this unit seemed closer to what I wanted.

 

The SP 544 started life as a Kickstarted project, and because of this I've been able to find quite a lot of reviews (which is always helpful). It would appear that since its first release the brains behind it, a man called Timothy Gilbert, has ironed out the kinks and sorted the teething problem leaving us with a handy 5x4 developing system. The only downside is that I had to order from America and as yet don't know when it will be arriving. 

 

Still, as soon as it does arrive I can whip out the old Toyo View, slap in a few sheets of expired orthochromatic (currently my most favourite of films) and celebrate my results with some nicely dev'd negatives. Because you just ca't beat the smell of developer in the morning.

 

 

 

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