List of supplies needed for wet plate

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by mark, Sep 12, 2007.

  1. mark

    mark Member

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    Maybe I am looking in the wrong place here but I cannot find what I am looking for. Can you folks help me out?

    I have decided to go this route, or at least try it. My problem is I do not know what I will need for my camera. I know I will need a few plate holders but how does one go about finding them? Is there anything to look for in these? I want to shoot both 8x10 and 5x7?

    Do I need to modify my cameras (Kodak 2d 5x7 and 2d 8x10) in some way, or will the plate holders fit in the standard back design?

    Where can I get one of those containers for the silver nitrate?
     
  2. RobertP

    RobertP Subscriber

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    The silver bath can be bought at Star Cameras. (just google) It is a plexiglass tank enclosed in a wood housing with a dipper that holds the plate and allows you to lower the plate into the sensitizing bath of silver nitrate. Works great! If you want a wet plate holder that will fit your camera and work like a regular film holder, then contact AWB holders....(.www.filmholders.com) Alan Brubaker is making one for me. I own several of his filmholders and they are top- of- the- line quality. This way you can shoot film and wetplate. Just keep in mind to clean the camera back well after shooting wet plate.
     
  3. Bruce Schultz

    Bruce Schultz Member

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    Get some plexiglass and make your own silver bath. If you've got a table saw, it's not that difficult.

    You also can modify a film holder to accept wet plates.

    http://www.collodion.org/plateholderconversion.html

    I've got a wooden film holder modified like this that I'd let go for $50.
     
  4. smieglitz

    smieglitz Member

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    To adapt an 8x10 film holder you'll need to shoot the slightly smaller whole plate size (6.5x8.5) or 5x7, and probably 4.25x 5.5 half-plate or 4x5 with the 5x7 holder. Whole plate is a nice size and is making a comeback as evidenced by several recent threads here and on the LF forum.

    If you opt for making your own acrylic tank, get some Weldon-3 and Weldon-16 acrylic cement at the plastics place. I've made several of these and they are very easy to construct. The wooden box is more difficult. I've actually made some using red acrylic so the outer box is not needed.

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    For the fixing tank I use black acrylic for the back and transparent acrylic for the front so the image reversal can be observed easily.

    Joe
     
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  5. RobertP

    RobertP Subscriber

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    Joe, Do you have pics of how the dipper is constructed? thanks, Robert
     
  6. RobertP

    RobertP Subscriber

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    Mark you will also need a hydrometer to keep an eye on the specific gravity of your silver bath. I would suggest getting Quinn Jacobson's book or John Coffer's manual as they both will give you a good understanding of the process. Robert
     
  7. mark

    mark Member

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    I am going to order Coffer's stuff because it has a DVD along with the book.

    Joe, Robert, Bruce

    Thanks for the information The plans for the tank help. Once the book and DVD get here I think I will be ready to give it a shot.

    I am wondering about the camera back. In one of those You Tube videos the person said he had a wet plate back. What is that? Is it necessary.
     
  8. RobertP

    RobertP Subscriber

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    Mark, That is about the best one on the market. I have it and I did John's workshop this past year. It was a great time. I'd highly recommend it. John is a really nice guy and one hell of a wet plate artist.
     
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  9. RobertP

    RobertP Subscriber

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    http://www.apug.org/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=8526&stc=1&d=1189785499http://www.apug.org/forums/attachme...ment.php?attachmentid=8528&stc=1&d=1189785739 The first pic is a tailboard camera with a wetplate back. The door swings open after composing and then the wet plate holder is attached. The wet plate holder in the third pic is shown with the darkslide pulled up a tad and the assorted inserts (the part that holds your plates) are shown. This particular camera will shoot 5x7...8x10....11x14....14x14. But you don't need this. You can have a film holder converted to accept your plate. The plate holder is shown with the 11x14 insert installed. The fourth pic is the camera set up and ready to expose a plate. The lens is a Jamin- Darlot Cone Centralisatuer about 16" it will cover 11x14 at portrait distances. I think it was made for only one year...1861. But like I said you don't need any of this to shoot wet plate. Just have a film holder converted to accept your plates. You can use the camera you have for film and wet plate.
     

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  10. smieglitz

    smieglitz Member

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    Robert,

    I don't have any pics of the dipper but I have made them two ways:

    1) Heat a strip of acrylic by flipping it over and back with the heat source aimed at the point you wish to bend the sheet. After heating it slowly the sheet will start to deform and bend due to gravity. At that point, one can quickly bend the end back on itself, remove the heat and let it solidify again in the new position. The same thing can be done on the other end to make a hook for a handle.

    2) I just cut several small pieces of acrylic and glue them together in sort of a U-shape at the bottom and I glue a crosspiece at the top for a handle.

    I prefer the second method. I've also seen some dippers with sort of a double prong that was probably routed out and then heated and bent to form the hook.