Looking for papers on fine grain emulsion making
Dear emulsion makers,
I am a hobby microscopist, trying to learn the art of microphotography (printing a very small image on a microscope slide). After a rather promising start, I am having a lot of difficulties in producing the emulsion. At the moment I am basically wasting time, not getting anywhere. I have a brief description of the process, but it only touches on the subject of very fine grain emulsion making. For this reason I am looking for two papers:
"Small-scale preparation of fine-grain (colloidal) photographic emulsions" H.M. Stationery Off., 1960;
"The preparation of ultra-fine grain photographic emulsions" Journal of Scientific Instruments Volume 31 Number 9, 1954
both by B.H. Crawford.
If anyone has these papers (or one of them), I would greatly appreciate a copy.
Many thanks in advance, and best wishes,
pm PE.I'M SURE HE'S YOUR MAN.
PE = Photo Engineer.
Originally Posted by RalphLambrecht
“Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”
Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2
I've had "Small-scale Prep...." on my treasure hunt list for a long time. I've never seen it come up for sale or as an e-book. I suspect an e-book, Google or otherwise, will be the first place it's available. If you find it, I hope you share the source.
In the meantime, there are options for you to try. At the very least you'll learn the nuts and bolts of emulsion making and be ready to take maximum advantage of Crawford's work.
A plain silver (i.e., one made without ammonia) is by its nature very fine-grained. If you look here: http://thelightfarm.com/cgi-bin/html...tent=31Aug2013 , you can see the detail possible in a 0.1 inch square negative. The negative of boats in the harbor was made with a Sputnik camera -- not known for laser-sharp optics. The recipe is here: http://thelightfarm.com/cgi-bin/html...tent=07Sep2013 but be aware that it is part of an educational series. If you start at the beginning of the Light Farm tutorials, you will know how to make an emulsion.
Once you have a handle on the basics, and if you feel you'd like to try for even finer grain, there are a few procedural techniques that will get you there. Try them first one by one, and then in various combinations. This isn't near as much work as it sounds, but the truth is, there isn't a shortcut to proficiency. How do you get to Carnegie Hall?
1) Increase the viscosity of the precipitation gelatin. Do this by taking from the Second Gelatin.
2) Increase the rate of the silver nitrate addition. Pour it in all at once in a slow, steady stream.
3) Shorten the time of the "ripening" after the silver nitrate addition. This is the time the emulsion sits in the waterbath after you've added the silver and before you've added the second gelatin.
4) Substitute potassium or sodium chloride for about a quarter of the ammonium bromide. The combining ratios are close enough that you can substitute one-for-one. Silver chloride, by its nature and as a general rule, is finer grained than silver bromide. It's also slower. Experimentation is your friend.
Best of luck and fun,
D, I will have a good look at your suggestions. I have already been thinking about starting with the basics first, to get the experience and feel. The equipment is already at my disposal and a new batch of silver nitrate is on the way, so I suppose nothing is keeping me. Thanks!
I will report back if I manage to obtain the papers.
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