December 19, 2010

Polypan F and Caffenol

Hi coffee junkies,

it's good to have friends and besides my regular life I found some friends in the www, some of them supporting me with my blog. Here we have two contributions concerning the Ilford Polypan F film. It's a cine film with almost the same emulsion as the regular Pan F, so boxspeed is 50 ASA, but missing a good halo protection and its available awesome cheap as 35 mm bulkware. Both, Wolf and Mike, exposed the Polypan F with EI 100, Wolf (Lupo914 @ flickr) developed the film in Caffenol-C-L, Mike (Mikeinlagardette @ flickr) in his own Caffenol-C variant that is quite similar to Caffenol-C-M. So let's see their results:

"Hello guys,

time for a new Caffenol experiment. For those „nickel nursers“ out there, it must be an incredible bargain, 90m 35mm film for 22 Euro resulting in 44cent per 36er roll of film. I´m speaking of the Polypan F, rated 50ASA, rumored to be a kinefilm made by Ilford. In fact its a very thin, polyester based film with less than optimal anti halo protection. But it has its own kind of old fashioned look.

For me, I´m using it for quite a while, exposing my second 90m roll of the film. In the past, development was done with Rollei RLS or Rodinal with decent results but only at 25 – 50 ASA, making it a film for sunny days only. Using Caffenol-C-L with Shanghai GP3 100, resulting in very good images rated at 400 ASA, I was curious trying Polypan F in the same soup. For the first attempt I´ve loaded a roll of Polypan F in my Pentax MZ-5n and exposed it like 100 ASA. Development 5 mins presoak, 60 minutes at 20°C in Caffenol-C-L,  continuos agitation for the first minute, two gentle agitations at 15, 30 and 45 minutes. The results are very promising.

Happy experimenting!


Below are Mikes results, portraying a Komaflex S for 127 film (4x4 cm) with a Minolta Dynax 600si and a 35-70mm Minolta zoom lens, cropped to square size:

Polypan F 50 @ 100asa in Caffenol C: Instant Coffee granules 12g, crystalline Washing Soda 10g, Ascorbic Acid powder 4g, water to 300ml. 5 minutes pre-wash, 10.5 minutes @21C, 30 secs continuous agitation, 2 inversions every 15 sec thereafter. Regard the unusual and fast agitiation rhythm.

Again, the Caffenol-C-L images seem to be a bit more on the finer grained side, the Caffenol-C produces some more "grainy character" and the slightly glowing highlights are fitting beautifully to the subject imho. Not to bad for a less than 50 euro-cents/roll film. Well done guys. Thank you very much.

Best regards - Reinhold


Wes Medlin said...

Very nice, guys, but where are you getting the Polypan so cheaply? Sounds like my kind of film.


imagesfrugales said...

F.e., no clue about availability in other countries. Best - Reinhold

Ole Kristensen said...

You can buy Polypan from here:

Anonymous said...

I have never seen any proof or logical arguments that Polypan F is made by Ilford. I highly doubt it would even work well as cine film, considering it's very grainy. It's certainly NOTHING like Pan-F, not in any way! It scratches very easily, and is generally just a sub-par product. It's cheap, it works, but besides the dubious naming has nothing to do with Ilford.

imagesfrugales said...

Hi Anonymous,

I never used Polypan F myself but the pictures look very fine as long as you can deal with a low halation protection or maybe even like that. And I rather trust statements and examples of reliable people that I know than someone who even doesn't say his first name.

Cheers - Reinhold

Zeno Felkl said...

First, thanks for the caffenol-examples with the Polypan F!

Second, about the "Is Polypan F the same as Pan F?":
One year ago I sent an email to lumiere shop and asked about the
origin of the Polypan. I received this message:

„Der Hersteller ist Ilford Emulsion Pan F.
Polypan ist ein Kopierfilm für Kinofilme.
Deshalb ein klarer reißfester Träger und in 3 Minuten fixiert.“

The manufacturer is Ilford emulsion Pan F.
Polypan is a copying film for motion picture films.
Therefore a clear tearproof base and a 3 minute fixer-time.

Maybe this is a proof for Anonymous

Ezzie said...

I too have developed a couple of rolls of PolyPan F. EI 100 and Caffenol-C-M for 16 minutes @ 20C. The lack of an anti-halation layer is in fact quite fun. A few examples: