I have a roll of both TMax 100 and 400 speed B&W film that I would like to develop. I am cautious about leaving it in the hands of a photolab at places such as Target, Rite Aid, Sav On, etc. However, from your experience, have you had any trouble getting pictures developed at those places? Otherwise, would there be another place I should take my film to?
All of the places mentioned will send traditional b&w film to Kodak or a lab in your area that has the capability of processing these films. Why not try the yellow pages under photographic processing and call a few places and see what they charge for the services you want.
I just had a roll of Tmax 400 Black and white developed through Walmart and they did send it out and it took 2 weeks to get back to me. I don't know if any of the other places you mentioned are quicker than that but that was my experience.
Do youself a favor and find a good pro lab locally that does it onsite. I have rarely seen a roll sent to Kodak or Qualex come back nice and I have seen results from KPL labs in Minnestota, Maryland, Washington State and Georgia. They are all terrible for the most part. Everything from under deveolped processing to dirt and scratches on the negs. Beware of anywhere that uses Kodak for their outlab.
Walk into your local photoshop, buy a dev tank, a change bag, thermometer, some stop bath, a bottle of fixer ( kodak or ilford ), some id-11 or d-76 developer, a few film clips, kodaks basic darkroom book, can opener and develop your self. Costs all about $50 and after wards once you get the hang of things you will be able to save a bundle very quickly, the developer will last you at least 10 rolls of film ( a small pack, a bigger one will get you through 50-100 for $5 more ). A big pack of developer instead for the total price of $55 and using it for 50 rolls you just paid off the investment, screwing up a few rolls and will help you tons in the future even if you go digital
Would I need an enlarger in that case? Or can I just take my film to a photo lab and have them print the pictures that I want? Well, in any case, how much would an enlarger cost and where would I be able to find one?
Nope, you can just take it to a lab after and have them print it. For an enlarger you can get full kit from B&H or adorama for $300-$400, but I would recommend learning with just developing untill you get the hang of it before jumping all the way in. Also this is only good for B&W developing, colour needs alot more.
Cool beans. I've done B&W developing in high school before, so if I can get my hands on some equipment, I'm sure that I'll remember pretty fast. Back in HS we also had a color darkroom, but no one ever used it. =) Thanks for the tips Brendan.
Another tip, use a sheet of glass, put negs under it, put a sheet of photograpic paper under it, turn on room lights for 2 sec, turn off lights, place sheet in paper developer, then stop bath, then fixer, then wash for 5 min, instant contact sheet ( not exposure acurate ). You'll just need to add a few trays and a bottle of paper developer and have a dark room.
You seemed pretty versed in this darkroom stuff. How do I go about converting, for example, my bathroom into a darkroom? What strength of red light would I need? Or does it even matter just as long as I have red light?
Oh, and could you so kindly provide me with timing for develop, fix, stop, and wash baths? And for developing the film too? I have forgotten the process since high school :-)