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  1. #31

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    A question for the masses . . . When was the first ready-to-use silver gelatin emulsion sold to the public? I am speaking of emulsions similar to Rockland's liquid light, etc. I would guess it must have proceeded the commercial sale of dry-plates themselves, but I would be very interested in learning of the actual history behind these emulsions. And not to steer the thread to far into left field.
    Last edited by DannL.; 10-14-2013 at 03:27 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #32
    gandolfi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwross View Post
    Hi DannL,

    $-wise, homemade is a lot cheaper. Time-wise, of course you are right. Every step of d.i.y. does add time to a process.

    I've come to think of all this as Slow Photography, done for all the reasons gardening and real cooking are done. I'm on the same page as MDR. Knowing your materials and process adds a whole new layer to the experience. Also nice to know that a paper or film will be available for as long as I want to make it, not for as long or short a time as some commercial interest decides they want to.

    !
    First: MOMUS: NO this isn't America! site is worldwide and run and owned from New Zealand....

    A couple of things: first remember not all here are from America, and I can for one state with out question, that a ready made emulsion here is FAR less expensive than the home made one!

    Secondly. a lot of the raw chemicals are next to impossible to get here with out a police permit. And a VAT registration... So it is limited what one actually can do, even if we want to...

    I have made my own simple emulsions from scratch and it was a fun challenge - and I truely would like to do more...

    Also "you" have a formidable opponent these days: the Wet Plate imagery... It is like this has quickly become the thing to do for so many people.. And no matter how bad images made the applause is always great and loud...

    I would like to learn wet-plate - incognito, and learn to master the dry method publicly and loudly.... (albeit I think I am almost alone in that..)

    However a photographic asylum in America might be first on the agenda..

  3. #33
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hexavalent View Post
    Unfortunately, there has been a history of "pissing matches" regarding emulsion work on APUG: unsubstantiated technical claims, dismissal of advanced techniques/chemistry as being "unnecessary", and often, a bizarre bias against anything related to EK. For this reason, I've taken the majority of my discussions off-line.
    Your last paragraph need addressing, it's not that there's a bizarre bias against EK rather that some here think that was the only cutting edge company. Ilford were way ahead and so were Agfa in terms of B&W emulsions and chemistry until the 1980's. And then it's conveniently forgotten that much of Kodak's cutting edge research took place outside EK at Kodak Ltd, Harrow.

    I rarely post on emulsion making here despite having over 10 years commercial experience because there is such a heavy bias towards one persons work which skews threads into there's only one way.

    There's many way to skin a cat There's different approaches which can give near identical results as I learnt for myself when I worked with an Ilford emulsion for a short time (early 1980's) alongside our own emulsion.

    Ian

  4. #34
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    Emil,

    Your situation may not be as grim as you think! "Polder", here on APUG, has been making wonderful progress with emulsions in Germany. He has written a number of articles for TLF (all of which I have enjoyed immensely) but one in particular might be useful to you. http://www.thelightfarm.com/Map/Inde...emicalList.htm

    You are an amazing and eclectic artist. I can imagine you'd like to try ALL of the processes someday. I wish you all the luck in that, but would it be OK if I hope you declde to do more silver gelatin emulsions? The portrait made on a simple Br paper you posted a short while ago was stunning. Don't listen to the voices that say an emulsion has to be more complicated than the one you made. (Ian: please note that I said doesn't have to be, not shouldn't be.)
    www.thelightfarm.com
    Dedicated to Handmade Silver Gelatin Paper, Film, and Dry Plates.

  5. #35
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    Ian,

    Indeed there are many ways to skin a cat. Ilford, Agfa, Polaroid, Fuji, CIBA and a host of others have all been key players in raising the bar of photographic chemistry. In strange way, EK is a easy target to be labelled as having some sort of "industry arrogance", much in the same way that people target Microsoft.

    Oh well, I'm just trying to gather information, cram it into my skull, and hopefully use it to further my emulsion projects.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    Your last paragraph need addressing, it's not that there's a bizarre bias against EK rather that some here think that was the only cutting edge company. Ilford were way ahead and so were Agfa in terms of B&W emulsions and chemistry until the 1980's. And then it's conveniently forgotten that much of Kodak's cutting edge research took place outside EK at Kodak Ltd, Harrow.

    I rarely post on emulsion making here despite having over 10 years commercial experience because there is such a heavy bias towards one persons work which skews threads into there's only one way.

    There's many way to skin a cat There's different approaches which can give near identical results as I learnt for myself when I worked with an Ilford emulsion for a short time (early 1980's) alongside our own emulsion.

    Ian
    - Ian

  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    it's not that there's a bizarre bias against EK rather that some here think that was the only cutting edge company.
    I don't see any bias against the EK Company. However, I think we all know who have been involved in 'pissing matches' regarding emulsion making here in the Forums.

  7. #37
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hexavalent View Post
    Oh well, I'm just trying to gather information, cram it into my skull, and hopefully use it to further my emulsion projects.
    That's the important part and it's the sharing of experience that's important.

    Strangely what I don't see is how changing certain parameters has large effects on the resulting emulsion, something I learnt very ealry on.

    Ian

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prof_Pixel View Post
    I don't see any bias against the EK Company. However, I think we all know who have been involved in 'pissing matches' regarding emulsion making here in the Forums.
    Well I've never said there was a bias against EK, I've only ever seen the exact opposite a huge bias for EK However I've only seen you post as is, no Bias, sure there can be an EK perspective.

    Ian

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post

    Strangely what I don't see is how changing certain parameters has large effects on the resulting emulsion, something I learnt very ealry on.

    Ian
    I'm not quite sure if I'm addressing your statement about "parameters", but I'll offer that I've learned (the hard way) that time/temp/reagent conc. during "finishing" (sulfur/gold) can be critical when trying to squeeze another stop or two from an emulsion. Some of the procedures are probably easier done a large scale as opposed to a basement lab scale.
    - Ian

  10. #40
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    still have three teenagers in the house and a job.
    Me too. Actually 4 teenagers (girls). I'll be the first to tell you that other than the holidays when I may cram in a few batches, I get to make a run about every other month. Actually, my last batch (and first ortho) made in June is about 1/2 used. Checked it last week and it hasn't grown fur so it should still be good. Right now I don't have time to coat the rest of it and still two rolls to shoot up from the last coating. My batches are about 150ml each. I have made single jet and double jet runs and while I haven't actually achieved VAg control, I can accurately measure and track VAg and rudimentary control is within my grasp. That means it isn't hard. There is noting in my setup other than the silver wire that didn't come from a local hardware store. The silver wire I bought online.

    Due to time, work and extra-curricular constraints I have never taken any classes. Out of about a dozen runs that I have made, one was a complete dud and one other, the first, wasn't great. Everything else has given something very usable.

    Get a credit card that gives you cash reward points and use the points to buy Silver Nitrate. 50 grams will go a long way at small size batches, say 6 to 8 and maybe more. The other chemicals are relatively cheap. Depending on how well I can coat I get 8 to 10 120 size rolls out of a batch. The subbing problem has been solved for coating on PET (there are various ways) and glass I understand is not a problem at all.

    VAg control is not necessary at all. Don't even think about it unless that curiosity level strikes you. Cyanine dyes for panchromatic film get expensive but erythrosine for ortho is not. (Search here and figure out why) Again, don't worry about panchromatic till that peaks your interest. You don't need T-Grains - although it is one of those holy grails.

    Use your moments of down time to read some of the old literature or search out some of the landmark books from the used online bookstores. Yes, there are pristine copies of Glafkides listed for well over $400. You don't need pristine. Patience will find you a serviceable set in the $50 range. Baker's 2nd edition is often well over $100. I got mine for about $40 and it is like new except for a faded spine. I missed a copy on the big auction site for a whopping $2.48, no doubt to someone within our ranks here. (Congrats if it was you!)

    You do not need EK, Ilford, etc. consistency and quality just like you don't need a Ferrari to go to the grocery store or the latest, greatest Nikon to take a picture of your kid. Fords work just fine. Keep that in mind.

    Carbon printing is a mystery to me. And what in the world is gum printing? Gum is something for teenage girls that I can't possibly imagine printing anything with.

    Tweak the knobs.

    -- Jason
    All this has happened before, and all this will happen again.

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