Pt/Pd prices

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by PVia, Dec 12, 2008.

  1. PVia

    PVia Member

    Messages:
    813
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I noticed that Pt and Pd prices have fallen to new multi-year lows in the commodities markets.

    Shouldn't we be seeing a drop in retail prices for chemical solutions and powders as well?
     
  2. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,045
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    Lehi, Utah
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    I think the actual purchase of raw materials takes a while to see the results.

    I found some on ebay the other day thanks to Jeremy Moore and after jumping through a few hoops purchased 50 grams of Palladium for 7.74 a gram. Now if I could find a similar deal on platinum!
     
  3. Davec101

    Davec101 Member

    Messages:
    896
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    Location:
    Cambridge, U
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I saw that too, apparently its used in catalitic converters and with there being a downturn in car manufacturing the price has been going down for the last year or so, would be interesting to hear if bostick and sullivan will be able to pass on these savings.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 12, 2008
  4. Vaughn

    Vaughn Member

    Messages:
    5,122
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2006
    Location:
    Humboldt Co.
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    I imagine that buying expensive metals is a chancy thing for B&S...as prices rise, how much should they buy? Do they buy a bunch at $1500 so that their customers can afford to use it, in anticipation of the price going to $2000? Then if the price drops, they can't drop their price all the way down until they recoup their costs of what was bought when the price was high.

    I'm just guessing that that is how it works -- being in that business during times like these would keep me up at night!

    Vaughn
     
  5. domaz

    domaz Member

    Messages:
    560
    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2007
    Location:
    Tacoma, WA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    So that's why people are stealing catalic converters out of cars so much around here. I thought the thiefs were drug addicts but apparently they are just poor Pt printers.
     
  6. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,045
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    Lehi, Utah
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    How much does one get out of a converter?
     
  7. Vaughn

    Vaughn Member

    Messages:
    5,122
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2006
    Location:
    Humboldt Co.
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    I usually get two 8x10's per converter.

    On a different topic, cars in my neighborhood seem to be getting louder lately. I wish people would keep their cars properly running.

    Vaughn

    Edited...PS...3 to 7 grams per converter. The auto industry is trying to find ways to reduce this by 70 to 90% by using nano-particles of the metals. Seven grams = about 0.25 oz, so when platinum hit $2000+ an ounce, that's $500 worth of platinum!

    Obviously I need to improve my extraction method -- I should be able to get a whole portfolio of 8x10 prints out of one converter! If not several editions of a portfolio! :surprised: There is only 5 grams of platinum salts in a 25 ml bottle! (And I have no idea how much of the platinum metal that represents).
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 12, 2008
  8. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,045
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    Lehi, Utah
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    Nice!
     
  9. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

    Messages:
    2,294
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2003
    Location:
    Floriduh
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Reading the latest View Camera magazine articles on Alternative processes, I thought I'd check out doing some Palladium printing, but at the cost of the materials for an 8x10 print it's astronomical for an enthusiast. It was enlightening in reading that in the heyday of the art the cost of materials again was the limiting factor in the furtherance of the medium for enthusiasts, and besides what alternatives might be coming to the market at a lesser cost, caused the decline of the PT/PD medium overall. Maybe at the prices we're seeing in the market there will be a decline in interests again and the medium will fade? Surely many cannot experiment in this economy at the prices I'm seeing for supplies. Maybe history is repeating itself?
     
  10. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,045
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    Lehi, Utah
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    Really if one is just starting out I would think one crazy not to do Van Dykes instead. They have the same look and feel of PT/PD but are a fraction of the cost. Get a kit from the formulary or contact me and I can give you a list of what you need.

    I use that in all my classes as it is just so easy to do with none of the pain of screwing up a $30 print for learning.
     
  11. Kerik

    Kerik Member

    Messages:
    1,467
    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2002
    Location:
    California
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I don't see the extreme cost in this process. You can make an 8x10 Palladium print with a drop of Na2 on a paper like Platine for about $4. If you are willing to buy in large quantities and keep track of market prices, you can make the process even more affordable.

    As for the interest in pt/pd printing waning, the opposite is true. I've been teaching pt/pd for 11+ years and every year have had more students than the year before. Two of my workshops were overbooked this year and I have more offers for teaching than I can make time for. IMO the process is easy, fun, economical and most importantly beautiful. What's not to like? :smile:
     
  12. sanking

    sanking Restricted Access

    Messages:
    4,813
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Location:
    Greenville,
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Also, you can tone the vandykes with palladium or platinum, which replaces the silver metal, and have for all practical purposes a print that is just as permanent as a pt/pd print made in the traditional way for a fraction of the cost.

    One of the disadvantages of vandyke, at least with the green AFC, is that you have no contrast control. Not a problem if you make digital negatives, but can be a big problem with in-camera negatives where the contrast tends to range widely.

    You might also consider true kallitype, which uses ferric oxalate as the light sensitive iron, like palladium and platinum. This process offers extensive tonal control with the dichromate contrast control method, which is also used by some with regular pt./pd. printing. I have an article on this at www. unblinkingeye. com, and also at the alternative photography site. http://www.alternativephotography.com/process_kallitype.html

    With all these processes costs vary widely depending on whether you print with a kit or buy the metal salts in large quantity.

    Sandy King



     
  13. Vaughn

    Vaughn Member

    Messages:
    5,122
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2006
    Location:
    Humboldt Co.
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    I use to silver gelatin printing, 16x20. The paper was about $2.20 a sheet, and I would burn thru a pack of ten to get a couple good prints (if I was lucky). The price has doubled since then.

    So, for the price of a 16x20 silver gelatin print, one can make an 8x10 palladium/platinum print. So unless one gets trapped into the "bigger is better" mind-set, I consider the prices of the two processes to be about the same.

    And one can always use 4x5 to learn the process!

    Vaughn
     
  14. boyooso

    boyooso Member

    Messages:
    323
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    It is my philosophy that the materials are always the cheapest part of making a print :smile:

    Corey
     
  15. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,045
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    Lehi, Utah
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format

    Excellent reminder Sandy, thank you.
     
  16. Lukas Werth

    Lukas Werth Member

    Messages:
    266
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    Pakistan
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    What is the price of gold in these days?
    And, I had very good experiences with getting precious metal salts from precious metal separating companies (or do you call them metal refineries?). Here you pay the actual market price for the metal, plus some manufacture fee for the making of the salt.
     
  17. Don12x20

    Don12x20 Member

    Messages:
    232
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2006
    Location:
    Pacific Nort
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    Nice set of plots on price of Palladium -- at http://palladiumprice.org/palladium-price-history.html
    Palladium (and Platinum) hit a high last spring due to closure of several mines.
    Unfortunately the decrease in price is also shuttering several mines in South Africa starting this December.

    with respect to B&S prices - they buy both Pd and Pt in coin form, and dissolve this in acid to start the process of making the necessary salts (per Discussions with Melody last spring). They do buy their coins on the spot market. They undoubtedly have to use the remaining coins in the safe and recover their costs prior to making new purchases. So buy up if you wish to see lower prices in the future ;-). Note that when the price rose, they kept the price low until they had to buy new coins.
     
  18. Thomassauerwein

    Thomassauerwein Member

    Messages:
    1,627
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2003
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I'd like to see Plat/Pall come down as well in Fact I've found small ways to reduce my use to curb the cost. With respect to B&S these guys are "the BOMB" so I pretty much stick to ordering from them. If I ever have a problem they spend whatever time I need to get it solved. Even replacing things that may or may not be their problem. Having them in my corner is worth the cost.