Ya, It works!!

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by Alan Davenport, Sep 4, 2005.

  1. Alan Davenport

    Alan Davenport Member

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    Ya, It works!!
    I have just finished testing the wiring job on my UV light box before going any further to make sure everything is ok. I used Tom’s instructions at:
    http://www.ferguson-photo-design.com/alternative/altinstruct12.html

    As soon as the remainder of the box is completed I will be ordering Kallitype chemicals from B&S per Sandy’s recommendations. I have tried to read everything I could find about Alternative processes to guide me, this forum being my greatest resource. I believe the Kallitype process will be a good start for me. I have seen some very fine Platinum work on the Internet and even own some from Christian Nze. I also have Dick Arentz’s 1st edition of “Platinum and Palladium Printing”.

    Right now I am contact printing 5x7 and 8x10 negatives using Azo in Amidol and hope to create some Platinum work with many of these same negatives.

    I do have a question with all of this, though. Will the 15Watt BL bulbs I am using produce enough UV to make for reasonable exposure times? The 4-bulb electronic ballasts will allow for up to 32Watt bulbs. Should I use these instead? Did I mention that the inside of the box is 19”x 24” and has 16 bulbs? Will this be large enough to accommodate anything larger than 11”x 14”?

    Thank you for everyone’s many fine contributions to this forum.

    Alan B. Davenport
     
  2. donbga

    donbga Member

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    Alan,

    Have you subscribed to the alternative process mail list? The archives are an excellent source of information about alternative processes. IMO, the knowledge base and expertise of the members is much more extensive than this forum provides, although the mail exchanges can be quite testy at times and not very inviting to the novice.

    Good luck,

    Don Bryant
     
  3. Alan Davenport

    Alan Davenport Member

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    Thanks Dan, I have only been lurking up to now. I'll have to subscribe.

    Alan
     
  4. sanking

    sanking Member

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    I agree with Don about the experiece base on the alt-photo-process list. Just learn to duck your head from time to time because, unlike this forum where everybody gets along some of the time, you may see some real spear throwing over there.

    As for kallitype, I am there as well and here and will try to answer any questions you may have. You probably know about my article on kallityp at www.unblinkingeye.com on kallitype? I have recently modifed the development instructions to shorten processing time with no loss of quality and the revised version of the article will appear on another site in a few days. I will post the link when the article is up.

    Meanwhile, an important thing to remember is that the ferric oxalate version of kallitype has paper requirments that are virtually identical to Pt./Pd., so for best results plan to start with one of the highly recommended Pt./Pd. papers so that you don't have to fight the problem of stain, which can be very difficult to clear with some papers. The very best paper for clearing in kallitype in my experience is Cot 320. Cote 320 is a bit on the pricey side but if ever there was a time to not skimp on your materials it is when you start out trying to learn one of these hand-coated processes. Just bite the bullet, buy a good quality paper that is known to give good Dmax and clear well, and work with small negatives for a while as you are learning. That way if you have problems you will at least know to look beyond the paper for the solution.

    Papers that are not designed for Pt./Pd. may give inconsistent results. Stonhenge used to clear well for me but the latest batch has proven very hard to clear. And unlike Pt./Pd., where the clearing agent will not reduce density, a paper that has to be cleared for a very long time with kallitype will lose Dmax because the acid clearing bath will bleach the silver if clearing continues for too long a time. I also used to get great results with Lenox and Strathmore 500 papers, but the latest batches of these papers I used did not give good results.

    Sandy
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 5, 2005
  5. Jon King

    Jon King Member

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    I've only used mine (8x20W bulbs) for cyanotype, so I can't answer the question about times, athough I'd guess you have plenty of UV as it is. Higher power fluorescent bulbs are longer, so they will not fit in your fixture. I'd give it a try as is and don't change things unless you have problems with it.
     
  6. sanking

    sanking Member

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    The 15 watt BL bulbs should give reasonable exposure times. Just try and see. The 32 watts bulbs put out twice as much radiation and should approximately halve exposure times, so if time is a significant factor for you just change out the bulbs. My exposure times wtih BLB tubes at 4" is on the order of four minutes for kallitype printing, and about six minutes for palladium.

    BTW, your printing times will probably lengthen as the bulbs age. I notice that my printing times with my BLB bank are now about 50% longer than they are with my NuArc 26-IK. When the BLB tubes were new they printed slightly faster than the NuArc 26-IK.

    BTW, do you have a good fan in the UV bank? If not, you really need one because as the bulbs heat up they put out less radiation, so without something to cool the tubes it will be very difficult to get any consistency in your exposures. Unless you use a light integrator of course, which is of course highly recommended. But the fan will help matters a lot.
     
  7. scootermm

    scootermm Subscriber

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    speaking of light integrators sandy
    whats a good one to get and what do they usually run, price wise?
     
  8. sanking

    sanking Member

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    Olix by Olec, and you want to buy them used on ebay in the grahic arts printing section. I have purchased them for as little as $50 with probe, though $75- 100 without probe is more common. There are several other brand names that appear similar or Olec so I assume that Olec is the distributor, not manufacturer.

    They seem to appear on ebay only from time to time so you might have to wait to purchase a used one. I just had a look at ebay just now and did not see anything available, but I know someone who purchased two units just a few weeks back.

    Sandy
     
  9. James Bleifus

    James Bleifus Member

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    Sandy,

    What sort of DMAX are you seeing in your Kallitypes?

    Cheers, James
     
  10. Alan Davenport

    Alan Davenport Member

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    Sandy,

    Yes, I know that article and have read about your modified process. Regarding light integrators, can they be retrofitted to an existing light box?

    Alan
     
  11. sanking

    sanking Member

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    I am getting about 1.52 on Cot 320 with double coating, slightly less on Stonhenge because it has to be cleared longer.


    Sandy
     
  12. sanking

    sanking Member

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    Sure. You just plug the power cord of the UV light (or any light for that matter) into the integrator, and the cord of the integrator goes into your power source. You then place the light sensor at some point where it will always receive the same light from the light source, and the other end goes into the integrator.

    Integrators give read-out in units, and most have a mechanism that allows you to set the duration of one unit to whatever value you want in time. I have my light integrator calibrated so that one second of time is approximately one unit.

    Most intregrators allow you to use the unit as both integrator and as a simple electronic timer, usually with readings to 0.1 second.

    For best accuracy it is imporant to use a probe with sensitivity that corresponds tio the light source. For a BL tube this should be rougly 350 - 420 nanometers.

    Sandy
     
  13. Alan Davenport

    Alan Davenport Member

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    I have read about the necessity of having a fan, but I am a little confused. Is the fan for cooling the only tubes or is it for the ballasts also?

    Alan
     
  14. sanking

    sanking Member

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    In my unit the fan cools only the tubes.

    Sandy
     
  15. lallan

    lallan Member

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    This is not good news. Sandy, when and from where did you buy this batch of Stonhenge? I have just run out of a supply I got about six months ago from Kinsella that had no problems and was going to re-order this week. Maybe I should order only a couple of sheets and try it out before committing to a larger order?

    ...lyle
     
  16. sanking

    sanking Member

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    I ordered 100 sheets of Stonhenge last November or December from Daniel Smith. Unfortunately I did not get around to really using it until a month or so ago.

    The stain is deceptive. It is very hard to see it when the print is in the water, but when it dries there is a very slight stain, even with extensive clearing. Of course, there is always the chance that the stain is fogging and not iron stain, but I think not because I don't get any fog at all with COT 320.

    Perhaps an acid pre-soak would help, but it would have to be very brief because any prologed soaking breaks down the paper sizing. If this happens you need a lot more sensitizerr to coat the paper, and the look is more grainy.

    BTW, if you single coat there is very little if any stain. I just like to double coat for the bump in Dmax, but maybe this is just something that should not be done with Stonehenge. Just for the record, I get the same level of stain when double coating with Crane's Kid Finish. But when I double coat COT 320 there is a significant bump in Dmax, and no stain.


    Sandy
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 6, 2005
  17. lallan

    lallan Member

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    Just to follow up on the Stonehenge clearing question. I called Kinsella papers and they pulled aside a package of Stonehenge for me and set me a sample from that package. I tested last night and had no problems with the clearing from this batch so they are sending the rest along today.
    ...lyle