Collodion concentration

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by Fullspace, Feb 11, 2010.

  1. Fullspace

    Fullspace Member

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    Hi all,

    I'd like to try wet plate collodion, but I can only get 2% collodion, but the majority of sources I have read say a concentration of around 6-8% should be used.

    Is it pointless using the 2% or should it work?

    Any help/advice is much appreciated!

    Louis.
     
  2. bill schwab

    bill schwab Advertiser Advertiser

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    www.mavidon.com

    This is where I order my collodion. Click on "Wet Plate Photography". I order the 625 ml bottles and they go a long way.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Fullspace

    Fullspace Member

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    Thanks for that, but should have said I'm based in Ireland. I don't think you can send collodion over seas, can you?
     
  4. Barry S

    Barry S Member

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    Where are you located? You should be using USP collodion if possible, not non-flexible collodion--which contains castor oil and other additives. If your 2% collodion is pure (a mixture of only pyroxiline, ether, and ethanol), you may be able to use it. The final concentration of pyroxiline in salted collodion is about 2%, so you may have some success dissolving your iodide and bromide salts in the absolute smallest volumes of solvent (a couple mls), and then adding them directly to your 2% collodion. Your ether concentration will be higher than normal--maybe 70% vs. 59% for normal salted collodion, but it may be fine. Some collodion workers use ether concentrations as low as 30% if they dilute the collodion with only ethanol as a solvent. A bit higher might work, but if your mixture thickens with use, I'd dilute it back down with pure ethanol--which would bring your ether concentration closer to that in normal salted collodion. Before you waste your time, see if you can find a similar collodion preparation that's used in the US or Europe.

    Edit: Ok, someone should be able to give you an EU source.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2010
  5. bill schwab

    bill schwab Advertiser Advertiser

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    You might want to contact Quinn Jacobson and get on the Collodion Forum. Quinn now lives in Europe and has helped a lot of wet heads over there obtain the goods. There are also a lot of Europeans on the forum that I am sure can help you.
     
  6. Fullspace

    Fullspace Member

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    Thanks! The collodion I USP, no castor oil added!

    So I could add my salts in, just with a lot less ether/ethanol? I was thinking of doing that actually. Just wasn't too sure!

    I'm based in Ireland by the way!!
     
  7. Barry S

    Barry S Member

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    Use ethanol as a solvent, and the absolute least you can get away with--you don't want any more ether. Bill's advice to ask Quinn about a collodion source is a good idea.
     
  8. eoghan

    eoghan Member

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    There are a few Irish people on the board too

    Eoghan