3M Spray adhesive to mount prints?

Discussion in 'Presentation & Marketing' started by BetterSense, Oct 25, 2009.

  1. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    I don't know much about dry mounting, but I understand it's a process where you permanently glue the print to the backing board. I like this idea for some reason; it seems guaranteed to keep the print flat, not that it should be a problem with RC paper.

    I use RC paper; suppose I used 3M spray adhesive to stick my prints to the backing substrate...what would happen? Any ideas how long it would last? I used to use Super 77 to cover fiberglass with cloth and it's very tenacious.

    Also, 3M has a Spray Mount(tm) product that is specifically for mounting artwork. Anyone used it? Guesses as to how long it lasts or how archival it is?
     
  2. photomem

    photomem Member

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    I would not suggest using the 3M Spray Mount. I have not used it personally.. though, some of my professors say that it can be chemically reactive and its structure changes over time. Just what I have heard.
     
  3. jolefler

    jolefler Member

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    I use it...

    for quick/easy mounting on photos that are aimed at a less expensive market, or given away as gifts. I've used it for, maybe, 15 years. Still have a bunch of those prints stashed away, and see no difference in them what-so-ever. No yellowing, lifting or de-laminating.

    I spray the backing board after marking the print position using the window mat as a guide. You only get one shot at getting the print down, so take care the first time! Unlike other proven mounting methods. the 3M spray is non-reversable. I have re-mounted prints, but it's a PITA cause I actually cut the back mounting board to the size of the print, leaving the print attached. Then you need to remount on another backing board and use a sandwich three layers thick: a print-sized window board of the correct thickness is the middle component, surrounding the print.

    I have no plans to stop using the 3M adhesive for incidentals, but will keep dry mounting gallery or wedding work.

    Jo
     
  4. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    I think, all you have to do is look at the ingredients list on the can, and at any article about archival processing and mounting on the web, and you'll know the answer. I would not touch that stuff with a ten-foot pole.
     
  5. Dave Martiny

    Dave Martiny Member

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    I used the 3M Photo mount on dozens and dozens of RC prints, without any sign of print degradation or adhesion failure after 9 years or more. If you read the 3M product info on its website, it is described as ph neutral. However, I have now switched to dry mounting, for several reasons:

    1) The 3M stuff is really expensive;
    2) The fumes are noxious;
    3) The overspray gets everywhere: your clothes, shoes, eyeglasses, etc. Never use this indoors;
    I wouldn't even use it in a garage. Use a face mask or hold your breath.
    4) In particular, the overspray gets on the front of your print. I had to pin the corners of my print
    face down on a cork board covered with a clean paper towel to prevent this.

    I purchased a used dry mount press for $40 on craigslist, and have not used spray mount since. Dry mounting does have a learning curve, and I have found that temperature and timing are critical for good results, but overall I find it definitely preferrable. Some are critical of dry mounting because it is permanent (as is gluing), but others claim that the layer of inert dry mount tissue actually provides an additional barrier of protection against contamination between the mount board and the print.

    Regards,

    Dave
     
  6. Kvistgaard

    Kvistgaard Member

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    FWIW, I bought some sheets of dry-mount tissue at the local framing shop, and on a test basis used an iron at the lowest setting to mount a photo to a piece of cardboard, with the tissue sandwiched in between. Worked like a charm, really strong corner to corner adhesive effect, and no damage done to the print. Six months on, the prints are still stuck to the mounting board.

    Key takeaway was that it apparently does not take a lot of heat to "melt" the dry mount tissue, and I now use this method as standard practice when mounting prints.

    I used to use 3M phot mount, but have ceased doing so, for the exact same reasons Dave Martiny states above.
     
  7. craigclu

    craigclu Subscriber

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    This came up once before... I work for 3M in another division but put in a message to the techs in the adhesives division and received this reply:

    Thank you for your interest in 3M aerosol adhesives.

    3M Spray Adhesive's: 77, Photo Mount, Vac-U-Mount and Spray Mount have been tested by the Rochester Institute of Technology, Image Permanence Institute for pH and Photographic Activity. They are all pH neutral in the dry adhesive film state and pass the Photographic Activity Test for both color and black and white photographs.

    Those are the only two tests we are aware of that would indicate if a spray adhesive is suitable for mounting prints/photos. We should not reference "archival" but rather these tests.

    If I can try to help in any other way, please let me know.

    Regards,

    Robert ( B. Jay ) Inserra

    3M Industrial Adhesives & Tapes Division
    Technical Service - Aerosol & Cylinder Spray Adhesives
    3M Center, Bldg. 230-2S-29
    St. Paul, MN 55144-1000
    651-733-8337 office
    651-216-8005 cell
    651-737-1920 Fax
    rjinserra1@mmm.com
     
  8. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    Are you speaking of regular 77 spray adhesive, or the Photo Mount product?

    This is very interesting. I really don't have room for a dry-mount press (although the school might have one I can use), but I do have an iron. For smallish prints, if I could lay a tshirt over them drymount them using an iron that would be great. I need to get some of that tissue and do some experimenting.
     
  9. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    Though I prefer the drymount I have used the 77 adhesive for quick mounting RC prints when I was taking them to my local camera club competitions. Theres no sign of degradation on the prints I still have but a hot environment will cause the adhesive to loosen. It will stick down again if the corners come up.
    When mounting I was putting them on a plastic board. I would position with scotch tape and lay the print over backside up and lay a sheet of newspaper under and around the print being sure the mount was well covered. Spray the back of the print an even coat, remove the newspaper and flip the print back over and rub into contact from the center out. I rarely had a problem with the print getting mis-positioned. Any glue creeping into the wrong place can be cleaned with film cleaner.
    I tried this technique with paper matboard but the tape marked the board. Might work using white artists tape.
     
  10. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Wirelessly posted (BBBold: BlackBerry9000/4.6.0.297 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/102 UP.Link/6.3.0.0.0)

    If you're talking the automotive grade spray trim adhesives (8074 and 8088) then I wouldn't even consider them. They will not work archivally. They will eventually ruin the prints.
     
  11. Kvistgaard

    Kvistgaard Member

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    Bettersense, I forgot to add that I usually stick a piece of paper between the iron and the print, just to make sure I don't scratch the latter.
     
  12. fdi

    fdi Advertiser Advertiser

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    Although I am not a conservator, here is my two cents as a framer. In general 3M super 77 is considered a good adhesive for inexpensive decorative mounting. For the most part framers will avoid it because it is not as permanent or as conservative as other methods they have. It is not considered reversible like t-hinging and unlike methods such as dry mounting; it is more likely to fail with bubbles or peeling over time. There are two keys to adhesive mounting. One is getting rid of all the air. The second is making sure the adhesive is evenly spread and fully activated. If you are careful, this can be done fairly well by hand on small prints. As the prints get larger it becomes much more difficult. That is when the advantages of a press for dry mounting or roller equipment for pressure activated adhesives come in to play. In the end you have to consider what is being done with the print. If it is a 40x60 print being adhered to gatorboard super 77 wont work. If it is an 8x10 print being sold at low cost and not expected to be passed down through the generations then super 77 will be just fine.
     
  13. guyjr

    guyjr Member

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    This may not be appropriate for your needs, but honestly, I just use 3M Photo & Document tape to mount my prints. Works very well for my hobby needs, mainly attaching photos to the inside pages of archival books (the ones with acid free black pages).

    I tried the 3M Photo Mount spray years ago, and made the mistake of using it indoors on a project (mounting photos in an archival book of my honeymoon to Hawaii). After just one evening of using that, I had a headache that, I am not exaggerating, did not go away for several _days_. I threw the can away and have never touched the stuff since - it is extremely toxic, and like others have said, should never, ever be used indoors. I'm really surprised it's still on the market, to be quite honest.
     
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  15. namke

    namke Member

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    I'm not trying to cause offence here, but the can does state that it should be used in a well-ventilated area - I can't see why a product should be taken off the market because people ignore directions!

    I have an outside area which I go to when using the spray - which is fine unless it's too windy :wink:
     
  16. jeffreyg

    jeffreyg Subscriber

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    I have a dry mounting press and have essentially stopped dry mounting prints (fiber base paper) and use the press now to flatten prints which I mount with archival corners because if the mat board gets damaged or develops climate stains in a high humidity climate such as we have in Florida there goes the print.
     
  17. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    I don't understand. Do you glue the overmat to the mount-board?
     
  18. jeffreyg

    jeffreyg Subscriber

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    No, I don't use any glues. If the print is framed I use archival backing plus the mount board and then an over mat. If the print is to be framed by the recipient I just use the mount board and let the framer do the rest (with my recommendations). An eight ply over mat has a great look but should be done with a computer guided mat cutter. We have a local frame shop that is very knowledgeable about handling photographs and has all the correct equipment and frames for museums etc.. Also I do platinum/palladium and it is not recommended to dry mount those.
    Jeff
     
  19. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    Thanks for the clarification. I understand now, it was my confusion about the terms 'mount-board' and 'mat-board'. To me, mount-board is the board the print is mounted to, and mat-board is the board I cut the overmat from. They can, but they don't have to be, out of the same material.
     
  20. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    Adhesive Transfer Sheets?

    I've not seen one mention of Adhesive Transfer Sheets.
    Via Google I see there are many suppliers and some
    mention has been made of them on other threads.

    The sheets have adhesive both sides. I'd think it
    very tricky to use them. Any with experience?
    I like the idea of a cool application that can
    be easily stowed out of the way when not
    mounting. Dan
     
  21. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    Is there any archival self-adhesive?
     
  22. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    Archival? Transfer Sheets

    I'll research the market some. May wish to
    give adhesive transfer sheets a try.

    Archival? I read in post 7 this thread that the
    word archival is not to be used. The spray did
    though pass two of the IPI's tests for mounting.

    Ilford, in their fixer PDFs, has dropped the
    use of the word. I still use the word
    but do so; 'archival'. Dan
     
  23. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    We will get off topic if we discuss the meaning of the word 'archival'. Anyway, just dropping it is not an option, as it has a relatively clear meaning to many people (lasting for a long time). A more accurate description is the term 'life expectancy', followed by the years until a certain level of deterioration has been reached. For example, if we can accept a 10% density loss and it takes 100 years for that density loss to occur then the product has a life expectancy of 100 years, or short, LE100.

    Back to adhesives. I might be wrong, but my information is that self-adhesives in the form of tape, double-sided tape or sticky sheets don't have a long life expectancy, which means in colloquial language, they are not archival. Is anybody aware of IPI tests on adhesive transfer sheets?
     
  24. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    ISO 14523?

    I did run across one product which met the ISO 14523 Photo
    Activity test. No mention of the IPI. The IPI I'd suspect is
    one of a few labs certified to test. Dan
     
  25. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    Better yet. The IPI developed the Photographic Activity Test, which turned into ISO 14523.
     
  26. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    The PAT?

    I've found a couple of more which have passed the PAT
    one of which is a Gudy 870; available from Talas. The
    OP's spray also has passed the PAT.

    Is the PAT as a standard the last word in print
    mounting compatibility? I suspect that any of
    the 'hot melt' papers pass no more than
    the PAT. Dan