Farmer’s Reducer – Bleaching

Farmer’s Reducer – A Bleaching agent for silver gelatin prints and negatives – Pradip Malde
Solution A
Water
300 ml
Potassium Ferricyanide
40 g
Water to make
500 ml
Solution B
Water
1L
Sodium Thiosulphate (Hypo)
450 g
Water to make
2 L
The two solutions should have a long shelf life if stored in dark brown bottles. Once mixed, the solution is effective for no more than five minutes.
Mixing instructions: Add chemicals in specified sequence.
Dilution: water + Solution A + Solution B = 100 + 3 + 3 (e.g. 1L of water add 30 ml of Solution A and 30 ml of Solution B.)
Use: Pour solution into a white tray and immerse a wet print or negative. Agitate gently. Watch the action carefully and remove the negative as soon as the desired density is achieved. Immerse immediately into running water to stop the action. Then Fix the print or negative for the nominal time, followed by a thorough wash.
The mixed solution has a short life, but the process can be repeated with fresh solution for further effect. To slow down the action increase the proportion of water in the working solution.
Items may also be bleached selectively with a brush or Q-tip. Selenium toning should be done after bleaching.
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