operation, and maintenance instructions supplied with
it. Therefore, in this section only general information
that applies basically to any machine processor is
Most black-and-white automatic film processors
have a variable speed operation. Unlike hand processing
where developing time is measured in minutes and
seconds, machine processing developing times are
measured in feet-per-minute (fpm). Both methods
measure the length of time the material is affected by
the developer and other solutions. Most color processors
have a set machine speed that can only be adjusted
slightly because color materials must be processed to
specific parameters so processing cannot be manipu-
The time the solutions are allowed to act on the film
or paper is a result of the speed that the machine moves
the sensitized material and the length of time the
material is immersed in a particular tank. Most machines
have an fpm indicator that shows the set speed of the
processor. The temperatures of solutions and the
specific number of feet in each section of the machine
are usually constant factors. It is the rate the paper or
film travels that determines the total processing time; for
example, if the speed is set to 10 fpm and the total roller
path in the developing tank is 30 feet, a certain point on
the material being developed takes 3 minutes (30
Regardless of the machine speed, film or paper
cannot be processed faster than the total required
solution times. For example, you are processing film
that requires a processing and drying time of 10 minutes
and 20 seconds. When the machine is processing this
film, it takes 10 minutes and 20 seconds before the first
foot of film leaves the dryer. However, the total time to
process the entire roll is related to the speed of the
machine and the total length of the material. For
example, if the machine speed is 10 fpm and the roll is
10 feet long, the film takes 10 minutes, 20 seconds, plus
1 minute (10
10). With a 200-foot roll, access time is
10 minutes, plus 20 seconds, plus 20 minutes
10), or a total of 30 minutes, 20 seconds. It is
important for you to know the access time of the
processor. When the material being processed does not
exit the machine in the required time, a machine
malfunction or jam is evident.
Wash water is an important processing con-
sideration. Not only is the water temperature important
but also the flow rate of the water. Two factors that must
be considered are as follows: sufficient flow to ensure

Basic Photography Course

Privacy Policy