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  1. #1

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    Image size on dried fibre paper

    Hi there, this may well be an odd question - but here goes...

    Had anyone else noticed a difference in the paper size once a fibre base print it dried?

    Ok, so I print on 8"x8" paper with an image size of 7"x7". The paper is cut accurately on a trimmer and the image size is consistent on the easel. I dry the paper by taping it to a glass sheet with artists brown tape. When the print is dried, one dimension of the image size has gone up to 7 1/8" and the other dimension has reduced by 1/16". This is consistent over about 20 prints that have been printed/dried over the last few weeks using a variety of Ilford papers.

    Has anyone measured the finished image size of their prints? If so, have they remained the same as the initial exposure print size. Not sure what to do with this info but it does seem consistent on my workflow!

    Thoughts welcomed.

  2. #2
    Maris's Avatar
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    Fibre base paper changes size when taken through a wet/dry cycle. The direction and magnitude of the change depends on the individual paper and the machine direction of the paper fibres. If accurate registration of multiple images is required then RC paper is consistently reliable.

    Soaking and drying FB paper prior to exposure and processing reduces the size change problem but is such a nuisance I only tried it once before going to RC.
    Photography, the word itself, invented and defined by its author Sir John.F.W.Herschel, 14 March 1839 at the Royal Society, Somerset House, London. Quote "...Photography or the application of the Chemical rays of light to the purpose of pictorial representation,..". unquote.

  3. #3
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    Yes, this size change is normal for FB paper and Acetate film base. This is one of the seldom mentioned benefits of RC and Estar type bases.

    PE

  4. #4

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    I knew about fb paper, but not film. Are any current B&W films even coated on Estar? I'm surprised about the film changing size. If this is true, how is it that masking works? Wouldn't the mask be out of register once processed?

  5. #5

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    *Just musing to myself here really*
    I have been aware that the fibre paper swells when wet (and potentially shrinks when drying), I guess that up to actually measuring the print image size I hadn't followed the logical thought process that with the "grain" of the paper fibres going in one direction the actual swelling/shrinkage may not be totally consistent across a sheet. What I think I mean is that if the centre of a print is the reference point the top/bottom and left/right sides may not expand equally by the same amount.

    The follow-on thought is that the image on the paper has been stretched/distorted (very slightly) in one measurement e.g. width in relation to the height. Ho hum - good job I don't have to produce a dimensionally "accurate" image of the subject!

  6. #6

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    I noticed Ilford MGIV shrinks quite a bit.
    I also noticed Adorama house brand paper doesn't change its size.
    I have a book somewhere here that talks about a peper that actually expands when dry....

    The rate of change seems to be pretty consistent, so I just account for it when size is important. I always let it dry overnight then hot press, then cut my mat because of this.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael R 1974 View Post
    I knew about fb paper, but not film. Are any current B&W films even coated on Estar? I'm surprised about the film changing size. If this is true, how is it that masking works? Wouldn't the mask be out of register once processed?
    All masking and matrix film was made on Estar. It was done to prevent registration problems.

    All paper materials shrink or expand depending on length vs width (warp vs woof! ).

    PE

  8. #8

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    Right, but most people currently use either regular fine grained films or ortho or ortho litho-type for things like unsharp masking, not specialized masking film (does Kodak even make that stuff anymore?). So I wonder why nobody is having problems... ?

  9. #9
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    Some films are on acetate and some are on Estar and it is up to the user to check the support.

    PE

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maris View Post
    Fibre base paper changes size when taken through a wet/dry cycle. The direction and magnitude of the change depends on the individual paper and the machine direction of the paper fibres. If accurate registration of multiple images is required then RC paper is consistently reliable.

    Soaking and drying FB paper prior to exposure and processing reduces the size change problem but is such a nuisance I only tried it once before going to RC.
    You've done that? Wow, you were very brave!

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