Laid my hands recently on ORWO UT-18 roll films. Feeling like a 10-years-old in a LEGO shop, went to basement and opened up an old book of wisdom, the ORiginal WOlfen cook book.
ORWO Chrom UT-18 was first introduced in 1968 and was in production till the ‘80s. The expiration dates of my rolls was somewhen in 1986. UT stands for Umkehr Tageslicht, which basicaly means go-out-in-a-sunny-day-and-play, but don’t forget to reverse the film later.
I always do a bracketing test for films I haven’t used before. My balcony with the mise-en-scène of Varna bay has been always serving well for tests of unknown films. Recently calibrated Pentacon Six with Biometar 80 / 2.8 lens was used. Fresh from the factory the film is rated 18 DIN (50 ISO), so I guesstimated 25 ISO. Set F/5.6 (scattered clouds, somewhat sunny), started at 1/60 and went slowing shutter down to 1’’. The test strip is here:
My guesstimate turned out to be a way too optimistic – I would rate this roll at somewhere around 8 ISO. Next rolls I was shooting at that speed.
The original process for this film is ORWOCOLOR C-9165. If you are interested in the process, here is the original leaflet from an ORWO-manufactured kit. Do note that this is for 0.5 l kit.
I used b/w developer and color developer prepared from scratch by collecting and mixing the necessary chemicals. (Bleach, stop and fix I had available in their original packages from ORWO.) If you are interested how to cook the set,
here is a detailed baths’ recipes. Note: when I was mixing last time C-57 for this set I found that there is a mistake with its recipe in the previously uploaded version here. Now this is corrected, please delete the previous document. I appologize for any inconveniences!
So, junk or gem?
I would let you decide yourself. Based on my experience with these few rolls, on the specter from junk to gem I would go for “junky chunk of gem”.
ORWOCOLOR C-9165 is a hectic, 90 minutes process, but if you are ready to roll up your pants and wade into it — drop a comment – I still might have quite a few rolls to let go. Chemicals would be available also.