negative curling - grain out of focus

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by pmu, Feb 16, 2006.

  1. pmu

    pmu Member

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    Can you give me any pointers how to ease my problem -- the Murphy's law strikes and 9/10 of 35mm frames that I accept for printing are the last frames in a 6-frame strip. And of course that means that the film is very curly (when compared to frames in the middle of the 6-frame strip). Last time I printed 24x30cm print I had huge difficulties focusing so that the grain would be sharp in the whole image area. First I focused at f4 from the middle of the picture -- the grain was out of focus in the sides, even when stopped down to f16. Finally I got 90% pleasing result by focusing only from the "curly" side of the frame (= focusing as near as possiple from the side where film strip has been cut) and stopping down to f16. But still, the grain could be sharper...

    Any trick how to make this easier? I would like to experience the ease of printing in f8 for example -- can't do that because the grain is out of focus then.

    My equipment; Rolleimat Universal, Rolleimat's own sturdy 35mm metal filmholder (no glasses), sturdy easel.

    -Pete-
     
  2. clogz

    clogz Subscriber

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    A filmholder with glass will solve this problem. Make sure the piece of glass in the upper part of the holder is anti-newton.

    Hans
     
  3. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    I only have a single top AN glass piece on my carrier and my negs are totally flat. So a single or double should do the trick.
     
  4. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    One of my darkroom tricks, is to use removeable magic tape to hold the neg from even the slightest movement in the neg holder, when the holder with neg, is being inserted into the enlarger.

    If I have a curling neg I carefully tape the rebate of the neg along one side. Then, very carefully, I apply tape to the opposite side of the neg, after this is done, I carefully pull the neg flat and press the neg and tape onto the neg carrier.

    Be careful that you don't distort the neg by pulling diagonally, thereby causing the neg to be stretched, making your undulations worse.

    Ensure that you use removeable magic tape.

    Normal magic tape sticks like crazy, and is a devil of a thing to remove from your negatives.

    Removeable magic tape, is the same adhesive as on the Post It Notes.

    As a bonus, removeable magic tape, is quite brilliant at removing dust particles from a neg.

    MIck.
     
  5. Ronald Moravec

    Ronald Moravec Member

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    You must use at least a top AN glass carrier. The glass bottom helps, but the top is 90 per cent of the cure.

    I just added a slide glass to a 35mm carrier for my D2 as the 4x5 glass was a pain for small negs. It works simply great. The prints now match what I get with the Leica enlargers.
     
  6. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    I agree with Ronald and Sean, However when I tried only one glass I sometimes found problems so I moved back to glass on bottom AN on top. I think I will try only glass on top again to see if it was just a bad couple of days.
     
  7. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    I offer this as an alternative to buying a glass carrier. When I was masking 35 mm, I used a Gepe glass slide mount that had AN glass in 1/2 of the mount. I am not sure if they are still available...but this may be a solution if you have a slide carrier.
     
  8. avandesande

    avandesande Member

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    It seems silly that nobody has made a carrier to take advantage of the sprocket holes to put tension on the negative and flatten it.
     
  9. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    It seems silly that nobody has made a carrier to take advantage of the sprocket holes to put tension on the negative and flatten it.

    This has been done, the only problem is that you had to cut your roll film to a single negative, insert the negative into the holder, then slowly add tension with a small screwdriver.

    It was best to view the holder at an oblique angle to insure you hadn't twisted the neg, by overtightening.

    It was I think Italian, derived from a specialised enlarger for enlargements using coloured light for spectral analysis of certain subjects.

    Any glass in the light path added another variable that was undesirable for the outcome.

    I used it in the late seventies, when asked to help out a friend in a research lab with some enlarging and film processing difficulties!

    Mick.