I dry my fibre based prints in a blotter book. Make sure to get one that has a sheet of glycin paper between each piece of blotter paper.
1) Squeegie the back then front
2) Place in blotter book for hours to a day (place the print side toward the glycine paper), the prints will then feel slightly tacky from moisture
3) Air dry the rest of the way which introduces slight curl
4) Place under a book when completely dry or use a mounting press
Using this procedure, my fibre prints come out perfectly flat
Let me clear the things. I do NOT use a dryer with a cloth or anything. It's a dryer that is fed with the prints and rolls them through the machine. If the heat is set right it is great, IMVHO.
Originally Posted by Les McLean
If I tried this method I can guarantee the cat would decide to sleep on them, or in Jorges home his otter
Originally Posted by geraldatwork
The back to back on a line method seems to work of me. I then layer them and put a large book on top after they are dry just to flatten them that extra touch.
I dryed my prints face up for years but just recently I reread some place that said face down. Since the prints want to curl toward the emulsion maybe face down is better they seem to be flatter
Originally Posted by Joe Symchyshyn
Squeegee back, flip over, squeegee front. Lie face up on fiberglass screens to dry. When dry you'll need to flatten them. Most people use a drymount press when available. An iron with the prints between clean mat board will likely work as well
I use the microwave for work prints to judge 'dry down'. When I've got the time figured out, I place the final prints face down on fiberglass screens for final prints. Another screen on top of that minimizes curl and a dry-mount press finishes it off. I used to use a large heated drum in a gang darkroom but I'm sure the canvas must have been contaminated with hypo so I use air because it's cheap.
Originally Posted by VoidoidRamone
Microwave is a great idea and a real timesaver. I saw AA use one in a video on his life. So, I think it's required accessory for the Zone System.
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Originally Posted by naaldvoerder
I just did what you suggested. The print got perfectly flat but stuck to the glass and I couldn't get it down. Had to put it into the tub of water to release it. (Both the print and the glass were clean so I don't understand this.) Did I do something wrong?
I've never used glass, but you should either dry totally face up or only face down when no suggestions of surface 'tack' remains on the emulsion side . Is this what you did?
does anyone know what paper manufactureres use when producing their samples as these tend to have slightly more gloss than mine (Air dried using mesh screens). I assume they use heat?
For anyone thinking of making screens, I have used the following materials:
Fine mesh used for making mesh skirts (ballet etc). This is very cheap, but fragile. Unless you intend to chuck the frames about it is OK. Mine are 2 years old.
Fibreglass mesh (looks like plastic to me). I bought a little from Silverprint in the UK for lots of money then happened to see the same stuff in a builders merchant in Spain for 10x less. Bought about 10 metres that time! So as we all know, once the word 'phiotography' is removed from a product it suddenly becomes sensibly priced.
My frames are rubbish (badly made from softwood), so I think time invested doing it properly is worth it (find someone who knows basic carpentry skills !). I will wait until I can make a good frame before chopping up my posh mesh.
Tom, I'm not sure I understand what you mean by 'surface tack' and drying only face up or face down. What I did was that I squeegeed the back side, then face side, placed it (face up) on the sheet of glass, and taped the edges with a paper tape.
Originally Posted by Tom Stanworth
Should I rather use a plexiglass? Should I squeegee only the face side or only the back side? I'm puzzled.
If the back was squeegeed and placed against the glass, I cannot think why it stuck. The emulsion side will of course stick to glass. It wont if it is surface dry. You know when paper feels dry on the surface but is still a bit floppy and the emulsion is no longer soft (dry to the touch), this is what I mean by no surface tack (stickiness). As I say, I do not use glass, so cannot comment on using plexi. I would assime that as both are totally smooth and non porous, both will be similar to identical.
I know a bloke who leaves his prints to go fairly dry (no surface tack remaining in teh emulsion) and then dries them face down on plastic. He has no problems.
Mesh screens is easy with no problems and when dried face down, only a little curling at the edges. Cheap and do not require you to rotate etc as per blotters.
thanks for the explanation. I will also try mesh screens. (If those which I have on the windows as a protection against moskytoes are OK, then my problem will be easily solved.)