Dust Busting when Contact Printing

Discussion in 'Contact Printing' started by kq6up, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. kq6up

    kq6up Member

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    I would like to here some of your techniques for dealing w/ the contact printer's arch enemy -- dust.

    Thanks,
    Chris Maness
     
  2. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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  3. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    I run a hepa air cleaner in the darkroom part of the time. seems to remove most of the dust from the air before it settles on things.
     
  4. Roger Thoms

    Roger Thoms Subscriber

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    I thinking of getting a hepa air cleaner for my print finishing area (living room in my apt.). Any recommendations on what brand/model I should look at.

    Roger
     
  5. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    I just got something cheap ($50-60) from amazon. It's a little loud, but works well. A living room one you should probably go a little more upscale for something quieter. More money is probably quieter, prettier, and more energy efficient. I don't have any recommendations on mid-range or better ones. Eliminating pets is the most beneficial preventions. 2nd is using a central vac instead of a portable vacuum cleaner. A hepa vac would be also a better choice than a normal vacuum cleaner.
     
  6. kq6up

    kq6up Member

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    :surprised:) I about stomp the household Chiwawa/Daschund when he tries to run in to my darkroom.

    Chris
     
  7. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    I keep a HEPA air cleaner running constantly in my dark room. Anti-static cloth or brush for quick dust off prior to session helps. My three dogs have free run of my DR and its no problem, my boxer usually sleeps under my feet when I'm in there.
     
  8. bblhed

    bblhed Member

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    Clean and clean some more, but something that people often over look while cleaning the work area is the area where you will be laying out your negatives to cut and sleeve them, and where they will set them before doing whatever it is they want to do with them to print them. Clean your printing mechanism all you want, it will make little difference if you set your negative in dust while you are getting ready to print it. Also right before laying your negative down to make the print, dust it and the paper.

    I have several microfiber towels that I use, then toss in the laundry. I have never had a scratch from the dust remaining trapped in them. I use one for the work area, another for the negatives, one for the paper to be printed onto (I do cyanotypes), and two for the glass, one for the first cleaning of the set, and the other every time I change the negative. This works for me, your actual mileage may vary. Please note, microfiber towels are dust magnets, and must be cleaned often even with that they will, not might will scratch something during a print session.

    No you can not clean too often during the contact printing process.
     
  9. paulie

    paulie Member

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    practice at spotting prints, and use correct print viewing distance ;0)
     
  10. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    It is always great to have new ideas, but if you search on "dust," here and in the LF forum, much has already been written.

    John Powers
     
  11. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    HEPA filter and bunny suit.
     
  12. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    I hate spotting

    As your mom said..Don't spot your prints too much because can make you blind :smile:

    I prefer to clean that spot.
     
  13. pawlowski6132

    pawlowski6132 Member

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    I'm moving to a new house and I'm going to attack this problem holistically (sp?). I really hate dust. I think if you don't want dust on your contact print you should focus on keeping it out of your house first. That means, making sure you have a clean furnace filter, keeping your house at the proper humidity, getting your ducts very clean on a regular basis. Keeping your house vacuumed and dusted regularly. And keeping an air clener/purifier running locally in your darkroom. Then, running through your darkroom with a slightly damp rag prior to your session and finally keeping an anti-static brush (I use the same kind to clean my records) and a can of compressed air handy should do the trick.
     
  14. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    Do you make house calls?

    John
     
  15. Joe VanCleave

    Joe VanCleave Member

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    And a class-10 laminar airflow cleanroom!

    ~Joe
     
  16. Sal Santamaura

    Sal Santamaura Member

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    I you really hated dust, you'd ensure that the new house had hydronic radiant heat instead of a furnasty. No ducts, no moving air currents from baseboard convectors, no dust. :smile:
     
  17. Dan Henderson

    Dan Henderson Member

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    I am with Rick: the smallest HEPA air cleaner that I could find for my small darkroom, leave it running 24/7. Always keep the darkroom door closed. An anti-static brush and a small air compressor set a very low pressure to move any specks of dust that might still be around. I almost never have to spot prints.