Containers for Vertical Print Processing (Poor Man's Slot Processor)

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by cbphoto, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    I have a Nova Trimate, and love it. I'd like to be able to have both color and b/w chems mixed at any given time, and I can't afford a second Nova. I'm imagining in my head some kind of sealable, veritcal Tupperware thing that would hold an 11x14 print, and wouldn't have a big footprint. Does it exist? I haven't found anything.
     
  2. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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  3. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    If they had one that was one gallon! That's the right idea, though.
     
  4. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    There are 1 gallon tanks like that. There are some that are even smaller.

    IDK where to get them today.

    PE
     
  5. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    The problem is getting something narrow enough so that the solution volumes are manageable. Also, the sides need to be rigid to resist the stress of the solution pushing out the sides. Unfortunately, you need something like heavy acrylic which then gets expensive and requires some skill. In the end, you buy another Trimate!

    For B&W, consider single tray processing. That is what I do and it works great. I sold my Jobo 16x20 Quad.
     
  6. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    Tray processing (single or otherwise) won't work for me due to space limitations, lack of a sink, and unwillingness to pour chems in and out between sessions, or in the case of single tray, between each step. The Trimate spoiled me! I don't have to mix chems until they are exhausted, as the dowel rods on top of the slots keep the air out. I cannot for the life of me understand why the slot setup is not the standard, and why I can't walk into B&H and buy a vertical tray with lid for $20. It's just so obvious! Why are these not mass-produced?
     
  7. Tobster

    Tobster Member

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    I second that! I just got a Jobo drum with insert that can take 20x24" sheets, but these vertical trays would be perfect for smaller prints.
     
  8. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    I'll Tell You Why

    MOST darkroom workers DO have space for 3 or 4 trays, DO
    have a sink, and ARE willing to save or dump chemistry. Also
    there is less reason to keep the same chemistry till exhausted.

    I have space limitations but do have a sink so single tray one
    -shot processing works well for me. The chemistry can change
    from one print to the next. It is used very dilute.

    I would need 7 trays or slots to duplicate what I am doing
    with 1. I've fresh chemistry and water each print. I do use
    a second tray for hold & soak. Dan
     
  9. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    New York City real estate makes it a bit difficult :wink:
     
  10. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    What about Kodak Stainless tanks for 8X10? I don't remember them being more than 4-5" wide. The hangers themselves don't have a lot of value on the used market, usually in a a dealers "please take this crap of my hands" bin.
     
  11. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    I print 11x14, and would like the option of 16x20, ideally.
     
  12. DanielStone

    DanielStone Member

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    buy a fishtank, and some clear acrylic 3/8" from a glazier. go to the hardward store, buy some clear waterproof caulk, and make your own slot processor.

    craigslist for the fish tank, and maybe another $70-80 for the acrylic and caulk/caulk gun.

    easy peasy

    -Dan
     
  13. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    I thought about that, but I don't know anything about this stuff. What kind of caulk would make a watertight seal?
     
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  15. DanielStone

    DanielStone Member

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  16. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    I'm not so sure about how easy that would be. Slot processors must have drains to empty the slots, ideally a drain for each slot. Trying to lift an aquarium large enough for 16x20 prints that is full of water is inadvisable.
     
  17. DanielStone

    DanielStone Member

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    Hey Jerold,
    the OP has stated that he doesn't have access to a sink in his "darkroom", so he could technically have the "slot processor" on a rolling cart, if he wanted.

    but yes, if he wants to print 16x20, this could be a problem, well probably more than one.

    1. he has stated that due to living in NY, he has cramped quarters. this is understandable, unless you're a Trump family member. but he has stated he wants to print 16x20?
    if he doesn't have that much space for a darkroom, or at least easy access to a sink, where is he going to store 16x20 prints?
    2. I've never been to NYC, but I've heard from friends that the dumpsters there are a literal goldmine for those willing to search. If you find the right ones that is :smile:. So furnishing a fishtank shouldn't be THAT hard, especially now with craigslist, ebay and Kijiji(another craigslist) at his disposal.
    3. IDEALLY, having a drain for each slot is nice, but definitely NOT necessary. Buy a plug-into-the-wall 115v waterproof pump, and just wash it out between chemical changes. Shouldn't be any problems with that.
    Just go to Home Depot/Lowes/Ace Hardware, and ask to see their plug-in water pumps.

    I'm not trying to argue, just asking the OP to maybe use his noggin a bit more than I've personally seen, or read here so far.

    I'm not a book-smart guy, but investing $100 to build your own slot processor is a nice weekend project. IF he really wants to print THAT BADLY in his little NYC apartment.

    just my humble $.02

    -Dan
     
  18. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    Good points.
     
  19. Rolleiflexible

    Rolleiflexible Member

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    Some of us manage tray development
    in closets in New York City. We sell
    our slot processors to the, um, less
    imaginative. ;-) :::::ducking:::::
     
  20. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    pffft

    wanna sell me another?
     
  21. richard ide

    richard ide Member

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    If you have a bathtub; make a deck for your 16 x 20 trays. For washing drop prints into the bathtub. Worked very well for me for about 10 years.
     
  22. John Koehrer

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    Have one made? Fabrication of SS isn't hard if you have the know how. There has to be someone in NY with the skill. $$$$?
    The man that made the sinks & washers for Darkroom Aids lives in Michigan. Helix, in Chicago was still selling his washers 2-3 yrs ago.
     
  23. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    Oh come on now....asking if there already exists a container that does what I need is not not using my noggin. I have more projects than I need.
     
  24. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    I could do trays in my bedroom darkroom if I really had to, but the whole point is to not pour chemistry every time. With the Nova, I can uncover and whip out a couple of prints with no setup or clean up time. Like I said, it spoiled me!

    I guess the conclusion here is that no, what I'm looking for does not exist outside of the Novas.
     
  25. Rolleiflexible

    Rolleiflexible Member

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    It's not that simple. The Nova processors use a
    textured plastic surface for the tank walls -- the
    texture is important to keep the paper from sticking
    to the walls. A SS tank with smooth walls would
    not work so well.

    Chris: I went down this same line of questions in
    my head, and hunted around for a homemade fix,
    and never came up with an acceptable DIY solution
    -- which is why I bought the Nova in the first place.
    If you can come up with a DIY version that works,
    please post your solution here for us.
     
  26. cbphoto

    cbphoto Member

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    Oh I will!

    By the way, medium size binder clips work really well in place of the Nova clips. No more tongs.