Photographer's Formulary DR. Beer's' Variable Contrast Paper Developer, is a two-stock solution paper developer.
Stock solution A contains metol, a soft developer; and solution B contains hydroquinone, a contrast developer.
Dr. Beers' paper developer is unusual because the contrast of the print is controlled by varying the relative amounts of the two stock solutions that are combined and diluted to prepare the working solutions.
Thus, Dr. Beers' is not a single developer, but rather a combination of developers whose results can be varied from soft to high contrast.
For a specific grade of paper, the contrast can be varied about 1.5 paper grades. The prints have good blacks and neutral tones with fine separation.
The stock solutions are diluted 1:1 to obtain the working solution. The shelf life of the stock solution is 3 to 4 months, but the working solution must be discarded at the end of the working session.
A 1 liter kit contains chemicals to make 2 to 3 liters of working solution, depending on the dilution used.