Hardening Bromoil ink

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by SMBooth, Dec 20, 2011.

  1. SMBooth

    SMBooth Member

    Messages:
    1,146
    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, N
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'm about to embark on some Bromoil printing, I got some litho ink 1796 which seem a little soft, but I have read where you can use beeswax or Magnesium salts (Epson) to harden the ink. Before I go all gunhoe and just try it does anybody have some experience in harden a soft litho ink.
     
  2. OMU

    OMU Member

    Messages:
    744
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2007
    Location:
    Norway
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
  3. Kevin Caulfield

    Kevin Caulfield Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,405
    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2004
    Location:
    Melbourne, A
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Epsom salts are magnesium sulfate (I still get annoyed that IUPAC changed the spelling of sulphur to "sulfur") as opposed to the carbonate.
     
  4. SMBooth

    SMBooth Member

    Messages:
    1,146
    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, N
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks, i did read magnesium carbonate most places, but Michael Spedding refer to Epson Salt, -"and inked up using graphic black litho ink 1796 which had been stiffened with oil pastel or crushed magnesium sulphate (epsom salts). i'[ll have a play a see what happens
     
  5. Kevin Caulfield

    Kevin Caulfield Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,405
    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2004
    Location:
    Melbourne, A
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    It's probably the magnesium itself which does the work. Good luck. :smile:
     
  6. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,678
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2003
    Location:
    Chicago
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I'd bet that the magnesium carbonate is just a bulking agent....talc would probably work too. I'd be less confident in epsom salts....they dissolve once water hits them and that might affect how they work. Seems like most any insoluable powder would work.
     
  7. Whiteymorange

    Whiteymorange Member

    Messages:
    2,384
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2004
    Location:
    Boston area
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I am not a bromoilist, though I've done a lot of printmaking... take anything I say with appropriate caution.

    In etching, ink is made stiffer with French chalk (talc), but sparingly. The tack of the ink is not necessarily the same as the hardnes or softness. This site sells ink conditioners, but the text on their talc page made no sense to me. Perhaps it will to a bromoil printer.

    Good luck
     
  8. Jerevan

    Jerevan Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,034
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2004
    Location:
    Sweden/Germany
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Derek Watkins suggests candle wax (obviously uncoloured) or powdered aquatint resin, both needs to be melted. Other mediums include the aforementioned chalk/talc and powdered household starch. As an aside, the candle wax makes the ink a bit glossier.

    You can tailor the matrix to be of higher relief (warmer water temperature), but maybe stiffening the ink (or buying a can of 1803 instead) is a better idea.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 20, 2011
  9. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,805
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    I found litho ink to work fine. Why do you need to harden it?
     
  10. gandolfi

    gandolfi Member

    Messages:
    1,804
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2005
    Location:
    Denmark
    Shooter:
    Large Format Pan
    my 2 cents:

    the oils I have worked are all far too soft for using without hardening. That's why I use it.

    I buy the magnesium carbonate in the same store where I buy the ink, but I have also in the past tried something ammonium - something (the actual name eludes me).

    As I have never tried the aforementioned suggestions, I'll stick (pun intended) to the magnesium....

    Clive: one reason to use hardener is, that it can be a means to highten/lower the contrast in the final bromoil..

    (the stiffer ink, the higher contrast..)
     
  11. SMBooth

    SMBooth Member

    Messages:
    1,146
    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, N
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks:
    I don't know if I 'need' to harden it, just would like to now how so I can try using harder ink in comparison to a softer ink in my learning stage. By what Jerevan said a matix soaked in warmer water will accept the softer ink better. (i could not get the harder 1803)
     
  12. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,805
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    I think one of the problems here is that there are probably as many variables in the modus operandi of making Bromoils, as there are people making them. I have always found achieving low contrast bromoils more difficult than high contrast versions. I have posted one on the experimental media gallery made with soft lithographic ink.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 20, 2011
  13. coobush

    coobush Member

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    You can use 81053: : Charbonnel Litho Crayon Black 200ml
    straight out of the can without any stiffening.
    Graphic Chemical product.
     
  14. GLSmyth

    GLSmyth Member

    Messages:
    34
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    Shooter:
    Large Format
  15. sarahfoto

    sarahfoto Member

    Messages:
    216
    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2008
    Location:
    Hönö, Sweden
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I had the pleasure to meet Maija McDougal last year who gave a demonstration of the technique and some advice. She told me that most inks sold today are to soft and she uses beeswax to stiffen it. I tried Silverprint Bromoil ink and was given a jar of Maija's ink, the later was much better! But then I am no expert.
     
  16. SMBooth

    SMBooth Member

    Messages:
    1,146
    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, N
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I read that, do you know in what ratios of Magnesium to Ink. I tried a 1:1of Magnesium Sulfate but didn't seem to effect it.

    I did mix plain old candle wax and that certainly harden it up, but how it work I'll have to wait and see until after Christmas.
     
  17. yashasvi bhuta

    yashasvi bhuta Member

    Messages:
    15
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2014
    Location:
    india
    Shooter:
    35mm Pan
    one can also use starch such as dextrine or pigment powder itself to harden the ink