How to attach black out fabric

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by mexipike, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. mexipike

    mexipike Subscriber

    Messages:
    304
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Shooter:
    Med. Format RF
    I'm darking out a window and have decided to go with the Jo-Ann Roc-Lon budget fabric, as I've seen many people on here use it. It would be nice if I could open and close it occasionally but not crucial. Just wanted to know what people on here have been using to attach it around the edges so light doesn't creep out the sides?
     
  2. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,537
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    You could sew velcro strips to the fabric and stick the velcro it is to attach to on the window frame.
     
  3. ParkerSmithPhoto

    ParkerSmithPhoto Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,191
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Check out black plastic tarp which is used for covering crawl spaces. It's so cheap it's almost disposable. If you are printing at night, it's obviously much easy to block out the night than the day.

    Get a putty knife and use it to tuck the fabric in wherever light is leaking through. You'll be surprised how easy this is once you've got the bulk of the light blocked out. You can kind of push it into the cracks by the sash.

    Alternately, get some wide masking tape and just tape it to the wall.
     
  4. jeffreyg

    jeffreyg Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,308
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2008
    Location:
    florida
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I blocked out the window with a couple of layers of the garden plastic sheet and velcro on the sides but attached to a dowel stick retained above and below with "L" hooks. For the two doors in my darkroom I used black out fabric as you mentioned. Also attached to dowels both top and bottom generously over-lapping the door frame but only attached with the "L" hooks on the top and easily removed and rolled up like a scroll when not in use. They have worked without problems for almost forty years.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/
     
  5. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

    Messages:
    4,250
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2009
    Location:
    Central Flor
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I use combination of painter's tape and duct tapes.

    I first tape the "stuff" to the wall using painter's tape. These are easily removable and thus does not cause damage to the surface. But they are not light tight. Then I go over it with duct tape. These are light tight but does stick permanently (to the painter's tape)

    It's been like this for 3 years and it's still holding.
     
  6. Alex Muir

    Alex Muir Member

    Messages:
    406
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2009
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I did this and it worked very well. I was using a laundry/utility room at the time. I bought rolls of Velcro and attached it right round the windows. I then had pieces of blackout material cut to shape. You just stuck them on as required. Alex
     
  7. doughowk

    doughowk Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,735
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    My wife sewed velcro tape to the black-out clothe, and it works vary well. One suggestion, though, is to have the sewn part extend somewhat beyond the window's edge. Its surprising how much light can come thru the small holes created when sewn.
     
  8. wildbill

    wildbill Member

    Messages:
    2,828
    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Painter's tape WILL damage surfaces if left attached for long periods.
     
  9. ROL

    ROL Member

    Messages:
    792
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2005
    Location:
    California
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have used opaque foams and cardboard directly over the glazings, attached with gaffers tape to their frames. You just open and close the window normally after that, except that the panes are now blacked out, transmitting no light. Usually cheaper than "light proof" fabrics.
     
  10. john_s

    john_s Member

    Messages:
    1,094
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2002
    Location:
    Melbourne, A
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I made a timber frame a litle smaller than the window frame. I attached some rubber tubing around the outside edge of each of the four sides. Then I nailed the heavy black plastic around the whole frame. The tubing gives a bit allowing a tight fit as the thing is pushed into place. My window was high, so I had a single horizontal bar across the centre to keep the rectangular shape from bowing inwards. A couple of handles screwed into the frame make it easy to remove.

    The only problem is finding a place to store the thing when not in use.
     
  11. silveror0

    silveror0 Member

    Messages:
    674
    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Many years ago when I was renting an apartment and didn't want to leave any damage to the kitchen windows when the time came to move out, I just covered the windows with black plastic sheets (crawl space stuff). I wrapped it around the outside of the window frame, doubled it over and stuck thumbtacks through it. No light came in through the edges.

    If I had wanted to be able to remove the covering to open the window, I probably would have made a wood frame around the outside of the window frame with either black rubber tubing or self-adhesive weatherstripping stuck on the wood frame at the wall interface, then attached the black plastic to the outside of the wood frame with thumbtacks. To support the wood frame in place, I'd have screwed eye-screws into the wood frame to hang on L-hooks placed into the wall above the window. Pressing the wood frame against the wall to compress the light seal would not be difficult.

    Here, too, storing this covering when not in use might be problematic, but I'd be inclined to hang it on some pegboard placed on the wall.