A newbie question on paper....

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Pfiltz, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. Pfiltz

    Pfiltz Member

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    I just setup my 1st ever DR, and folks let me tell you I love everything about printing. I can't make myself get out of it, to do my day to day editing ....

    Right now, my experience with different papers and developer is quite limited. As of now, I'm using Arista developer, and am playing with some Ilford Multigrade papers. One of these is a RC glossy type paper, and I really like it. The other is more of a Fiber multigrade paper by Ilford. I bought (2) 100 sheet boxes of it from a forum member.

    My problem "kind of", is I'm having a problem keeping it from curling quite a bit during the drying process. I don't have a print dryer. I tried to hang them at first, now I'm letting them dry flat on paper towels. I have (3) 5x7's right now sandwiched inside a Vogue magazine to see if I can minimize the curling.

    Of course, they may be a mute point if I ever decide to frame and mat any of these.

    How does one minimize the curling effect?

    Thanks for any guidance...
     
  2. eddie

    eddie Subscriber

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    Dry them face down on stretched fiberglass screens. There will still be a bit of curl, but a few days under heavy books should flatten them.
     
  3. CPorter

    CPorter Member

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    I place the paper between two sheets of blotter paper and this does a pretty good job IMO of keeping the edges from curling too bad. My blotter sheets came spiral bound, but I separated them, so I simply lay one blotter sheet on a table, lay down the print, put another blotter sheet on top of the print, works great for me.
     
  4. Pfiltz

    Pfiltz Member

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  5. BMbikerider

    BMbikerider Member

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    Try this little trick. When the Fibre print has been washed, wipe all the surface water of, both back and front and leave to dry. There will be a little curling along the edges during this process.

    Now take a dry towel and put it on a flat work surface and then lay the on it, print face down. Get a straight edge (Ruler) of at least the same length as the longest side of your print and place it on the back of the print about 1" away from one end. The print longest side should be towards you. If you are right handed put it on the right side.

    Now take hold of the edge of the paper and holding it tight and at the same time move the ruler to the left (or right) and pull the print upwards at approx a 45 degree angle. Then turn the print 180 degrees and do it the other way. This is guaranteed to get rid of 95% of the wrinkles.
     
  6. markbarendt

    markbarendt Subscriber

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    I got some small painted refrigerator magnets and literally put the prints on the door of the fridge with eight each. Still curls some but more manageable.

    After drying, pressing with books or whatever helps.

    The curl is a pain, that and the extra rinsing and my inability to see a significant positive difference between my framed fiber and RC prints led me to give up on fiber except for the leftovers I have.
     
  7. Helinophoto

    Helinophoto Member

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    I gave up on fiber-paper, just couldn't get them flat (RC-flat), struggled to mount them on a board to really force the prints to stay forever flat too.

    RC is always flat, looks nice too, but I do like the various tones I get with the FB-papers I've tried......too bad it was such a dang struggle, curly prints cannot be hanged in my living room, people would think I am crazy :smile:

    (I am, but that's beside the point :smile: )
     
  8. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    I squeegee the front and back of my prints and dry them face UP on fiberglass window screening. I found that one of my favorite papers, Fomatone, gets marked from the screen. I'm not sure why people say that face down is better. Then store them under some books for a week or so. If you can find a used mounting press locally (they are heavy!), they make fast work of flattening a print....plus you can dry mount if you wish.
     
  9. cepwin

    cepwin Member

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    There are cheap blotter books you can get for drying that work pretty well.
     
  10. horacekenneth

    horacekenneth Member

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    I simply hang my prints up to dry by the corner of the print - no sqeegeeing no expensive equipment, they all (rc & fb) come out reasonably flat. I'm pretty new myself to DR but some guy online who knew what he was doing said that was the plainview secret.
     
  11. Pfiltz

    Pfiltz Member

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    Thanks folks... I actually threw 2 of my Fiber prints back into a water bath, then just placed them out flat on a paper towel. When they really felt kind of dry, I placed them in a Vogue mag. with other magazines on top of it. I took them out yesterday, and they were really looking good.

    I hear several folks talk about screens. Why screens? Is it because of the small pockets of air coming through it, that makes it dry uniformly? Someone mentioned to me about a print dryer like this too.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Portagraph-...922?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2a26250d7a
     
  12. MartinP

    MartinP Member

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    The print dryer link above is exactly the traditional device for drying fibre-based paper. That one is relatively small (for 12" wide paper) but would do a great job, assuming that it is in working condition as the ad says.

    A simple way (but not the fastest) to get flat fibre-based prints is to tape the damp paper, picture side outwards, to a piece of glass or heavy perspex. Use watercolour tape, a cheap product for fixing damp watercolour paper during drying and stretching, prior to use. When it is air-dry it will be pretty much flat, then cutting off the thin border where you have placed the tape will relax the print - and let it stay pretty flat during changing humidity in the future too.
     
  13. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    Your trick with the magazine is essentially the same as using a blotter, except that a blotter won't transfer ink to your print.
    Print dryers work, but the cloth aprons will contaminate your prints if (prior) prints have inadequate washing. If you keep the apron clean, they can be handy.
    I use drying screens because for my DR it's the easiest way to have drying prints out of the way. After they're dry on the screen, I put them in a blotter under a stack of books, or else in my wife's book press to get them flat.
    Some papers do better than others, Ilford MG curls a lot compared to some of the Eastern European papers IME.
     
  14. Pfiltz

    Pfiltz Member

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    Thanks folks... I'll look into using screens as well. I'm currently using some Ilford MGIV paper, which goes nuts when it dry's... :wink:
     
  15. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

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    Wooden frames can be made from pre-primed trim from a home imporvement store, if youa re not up to the task of cutting larger pieces of wood down to size.

    I found the pre packaged nylon screen meant to repair a sliding pation door was the cheapest screen I could buy, nearly half the price of the bulk stuff cut to size. Go figure.

    One night, with some trim nails, and a staple gun was how my first screens went together.

    After that me anf FB got along much better. Especially some old single weight Kodabromide graded stuff I had a large stash of at one time.