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 late ‘80s / early ’90s. 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.