Appreciate all the suggestions - easiest to test was changing the proportion of the ferric oxalate 1 and 2 from 50/50 to 2/3 1/3 luckily that did the trick - tonality is very smooth, and the blacks are what I had hoped for, now all I have to do is tweak the curve.
When I first started using Platine I got a speckly look.
The SIMPLE solution for me was to add 2 drops ilfotol (ilford's photo flo) to my emulsion. This is for 8x10. This is when I coat with a glass rod.
Also, I make many passes with the glass rod, perhaps 10 or so. Platine does not abraid very easily... unless you use a lot of pressure.
I do make a number of passes with the rod, and finish off with a brush to get rid of the residual puddle. My prints at this point are 5x8 and when I get to 8x10 I may try just the brush. With respect to ilfotol, is that similar in effect to Tween?
I've never used tween, we I tried it once it it wasn't good, as I understand it, it doesn't work with some papers very well.
Give photo flo a try.
Interesting post i have recently encountered this exact problem with Arches platine and can vary from print to print, i have since added 1 drop of tween to 2ml of platinum/palladium sensitiser when mixed,(Tween is a polysorbate surfactin and has the effect of decreasing the surface tension of the mixed sensitiser which allows more adequate wetting of the surface fibres of the paper), the problem has not been eliminated but is significantly improved, and i have smoother results, it does seem as though there is a slightly colder hue shift with the tween but i would expect this could be counteracted with me heating my developer. Adding two much tween will result in water spots which will appear in the final dried down print.
Before the tween i would have around 6-8 passes with the rod, now its only 3 with a drop of tween before the mixed sensitiser runs out. My darkroom temp and humidity is 15C and 50 rh respectively and i use Potassium Oxalate as developer so i dont use Ferric oxalate solution 2, i found that that mottled a lot of my highlights.
I was reading Stan Klimek's comments in the Dick Arentz book on platinum printing last night and i found his comments quite relevant to what platinum printers go through :
'The quest for the perfect platinum print is similar to aiming at a moving target. After all these years, I still learn something new every time i print. Techniques I’ve been using become ineffective. Materials change or another printer comes up with an improved procedure. But after i chase it down, work it through, and come through with an image i am satisfied, I am allowed to relive the moment that i made my first platinum print.'
I am having similar problems with Kalitypes and will give the tween a try, if not I will have to ask the master of the process ‘Sandy King’ for some help!
Originally Posted by Davec101
Dave (I suppose that"s your name),
my advice would be to use another paper. I have used Platine"s different batches over the years, and have seen quite a number of bad batches, and non-announced changes in quality. I have run into trouble several times, and the time and energy I spent every time made me to discard this paper. Perhaps Arches tinkers with it for inkjet purposes and the like, even though they market it for Platinum.
You may run into further problems should you use other iron-salt processes which are more paper-sensitive than platinum (kallitypes are rather easy to manage either, though they also have their issues, but Mike Ware's formulation of New Cyanotypes or New Chrysotypes are considerably more sensitive).
Update to my original post...
I've finally managed to get a pretty good result. At the end of the day:
1/3 2/3 ratio of platinum to palladium (I started with 50/50)
2/3 1/3 ratio of Ferric Oxalate solution 1 to the restrained solution 2 (again I started at 50/50)
48 drops for an 8x10
I use a rod, then brush out the last puddle.
warming the pt/pd also helps
A big change was aggressively humidifying the Platine over a steam bath and then letting it rest for a few minutes- this cut my exposure time by 1/3, but necessitated constructing a new curve.
Good thing too, I've just about run out of my first batch of chemicals.
Took me 44 tries to get to where I was satisfied, but in fairness that includes a bit of a goof at the beginning when I was printing on the wrong site of the Platine (I didn't notice the watermark till after a few prints) and a few other dead ends. :)
Anyway I'm hooked. The downside is that now my inkjets look cold and lifeless - almost like trying to sculpt a figure with a meccano set.
Did the white specks go away with the new procedures?
I've experienced the white specks with a number of papers and in every case a small drop of TWEEN does the trick. I use both rod and brush with excellent results. I also allow the sensitizer to soak in until the surface has no sheen and then dry it with a small hair drier on the lowest (very low) temp. I rarely need more than a few drops of #2 if a skight contrast boost is needed but always use 1 drop minimum to prevent fog.
Give the TWEEN a try.
Yes, possibly attributed to the humidification.
Originally Posted by Blunt