Tag Archives: #Tri-X

Brooks Avenue—Spot my Scamp!

During 1987 and 1988, I spent a fair amount of time around Rochester & Southern’s Brooks Avenue Yard.

This was a former Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburgh yard and located near the Rochester, NY airport, on the southwest side of the city.

On January 27, 1988, I made this black & white photo on 120 size film Tri-X using a Rolleiflex Model-T with a 645-size insert. My goal was to overexpose the film and then underprocess it to maximize tonality.

I processed it using a diluted mix of Kodak D-76. It was a good effort, but I was still learning to master this technique.

The primary subject was R&S’s recently acquired SW1200 number 107, a former Southern Pacific switcher that still featured SP’s distinctive full lighting package (including both white and red oscillating lights, visable above the cab).

Upon scanning the original negative the other day, I was delighted to see that my old Plymouth Scamp is also featured. I’d parked the car in the yard, and it is visable in the distance to the left of the switcher. That Scamp was my first car. I drove it for tens of thousands of miles in the mid-1980s making photos across New York and New England.

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Oulu Roundhouse—Summer 2001.

On a visit to Oulu, Finland in Summer 2001, my friend Markku Pulkkinen arranged a visit the VR Group roundhouse.

At that time this was still the primary facility for locomotive storage and repair in Oulu.

In modern times, a big modern train care center has supplanted the old roundhouse, which on my visit in 2015 was largely used to house historic railroad equipment.

I made this photo on 120-size Kodak Tri-X using my Rollei Model T. In addition to a handful of black & white photos, I also made some color slides with my then-new Contax G2 rangefinder.

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April 2001—CSX at Guilderland, NY.

Way back in April 2001, photographer Mike Gardner and I paid a visit to the closed Old State Road bridge over the former West Shore route at Guilderland, New York.

This was only a couple of years after CSX assumed operation of Conrail’s former New York Central Waterlevel Route across New York State. At that time this was an exceptionally busy line with a non-stop parade of freights.

Eastward CSX freight at Guilderland, New

I made this coming and going pair of photos using my Rollei Model T. This featured a very sharp f3.5 Zeiss Tessar lens.

My choice of film was Kodak Tri-X processed in Ifotec HC developer. I scanned the negatives yesterday using my Epson V600 flatbed scanner, then made minor adjustements to the TIF scans using Adobe Light room to improve constrast and exposure.

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Central Vermont at the Diamond.

September 23, 1984; crisp autumn sunlight made for some nice light to capture a southward Central Vermont freight crossing the Boston & Albany at Palmer, Massachusetts.

I was working with Kodak Tri-X, which I was learning to process in D-76, rather than Microdol-X. D-76 offered broader tonality, but resulted in somewhat coarser grain. Complicating matters, my process time was a bit longer than necessary and I tended to over agitate, which resulted in denser negatives than I’d like.

A comparatively rare Central Vemont lash-up; GP9 4551 and GP18 3602. The former Rock Island GP18 was relatively short lived on CV.
Palmer Union Station at left.

Despite the minor processing flaws, I scanned the negatives last week and made minor corrections in post processing to yield better results.

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Union Pacific at 3rd Street in West Oakland, California.

Here’s a gem from my black & white archive.

Working with my Leica M2 with 50mm Summicron lens, I exposed this image on 35mm Kodak Tri-X black & white film. I processed this in Edwall FG7, which allowed for richer tonality than D76 (my more typical developer of the time).

In April 1991, this was a common scene in West Oakland, California, before Union Pacific bought Southern Pacific, the railroad accessed the region via the former Western Pacific. WP route reached the Oakland yards via street trackage on 3rd Street (which ran parallel to SP’s street trackage on Embarcedero via Jack London Square, two blocks to the south).

It was the era before ditch lights were common equipment on UP locomotives. This freight is westbound.

When I revisited Oakland in 2008, I found little trace of the 3rd street trackage, with all moves now concentrated on the former SP line through Jack London Sq.

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