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  1. #1
    eddie's Avatar
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    Liquid Emulsion Drying

    When I use liquid emulsions, I've been taping the paper to mat board, applying the emulsion, and letting them dry in empty 50 sheet paper boxes. With the highly textured watercolor papers, they've been warping, and sticking to the box top. I have no way to leave them, exposed, in the darkroom, while they dry. Any suggestions for a solution? Opening the boxes, and finding the paper stuck to the top is very disappointing. Thanks.

  2. #2

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    hi eddie

    i haven't used large sheets as you are using and and even when i coat small
    the paper curls when it dries. ... i am a fan of is waxed paper.
    i know from book making that NOTHING sticks to this stuff
    and at least in some instances it is harmless if you have to peel it off ...
    i haven't used waxed paper with emulsion coating but maybe it is worth a try
    at least with a small piece first as a test, and if it peels off and is harmless
    it might be worth going to a restaurant supply place and getting a big roll.

    maybe the good folks at the light farm have a better suggestion if the waxed paper is a read dud ..


    - good luck !
    john
    silver magnets, trickle tanks sold
    artwork often times sold for charity
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  3. #3
    dwross's Avatar
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    Wax paper is certainly non-stick, but the couple of times I’ve tried to work with it, I couldn’t get it to behave. Everything went in a separate direction, greased pig style. Try this. It will take an online order and an hour or so of prep work, but just the first time. After that, everything will be ready to go.

    1) Measure the inside of your boxes. Then, go to http://www.clearbags.com/art-photo and order a size of Crystal Clear bags that will fit inside. When you get the bags, cut your mat board to fit inside the bags. You’ll want a not-quite-snug fit. You don’t want the mat board to slosh around inside the bag, but you also don’t want it to be so tight that the bag bows the board.

    2) Cut your watercolor paper to the size of the mat board. Make sure you know the grain of the paper. You want the paper to warp parallel to the long dimension, not washboard across the width. Tape each piece of paper to a plastic bag covered mat board at all four corners. Loop the tape clear around each corner so that one cut end overlaps the other. Tape seems to stick better to itself than any other surface!

    3) Now, put the characteristics of the paper to work for you. Start your coating at least two inches down from the top of the paper and end the coating at least two inches from the bottom. The uncoated paper will fight the longitudinal curl of the coated area. You’ve “wasted” some paper, but given the price of commercial liquid emulsion (ouch) it’s money well saved.

    Also and obvious, but I'll mention it anyway: If you have the option of opening the boxes in the dark at any time during the drying, it will go a lot faster.

    Best of luck and fun.
    d
    www.thelightfarm.com
    Dedicated to Handmade Silver Gelatin Paper, Film, and Dry Plates.

  4. #4
    cliveh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eddie View Post
    When I use liquid emulsions, I've been taping the paper to mat board, applying the emulsion, and letting them dry in empty 50 sheet paper boxes. With the highly textured watercolor papers, they've been warping, and sticking to the box top. I have no way to leave them, exposed, in the darkroom, while they dry. Any suggestions for a solution? Opening the boxes, and finding the paper stuck to the top is very disappointing. Thanks.
    If you are taping the paper down on a board, how is it able to warp? If as you say you are using watercolour paper, why not size it first? Soak it in water for about 30 seconds, then tape it to the board while still wet, on all sides with wet gum strip and leave to dry. You can then coat it with liquid emulsion and it should not warp.

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

    Francis Bacon

  5. #5
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Do you have a paper safe? If not, one could come in handy for this work. I put paper into a safe to dry.

    You might also consider the Emulsion forum here on APUG for posting.

    Best wishes.

    PE

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    I have a large table where I coat my sheets. When I'm finished i place developing trays up side down over each sheet and the I cover the whole table with a thick, dark cloth.

  7. #7
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    I use LE all the time as some may know..

    theory: if using too thin paper, they can warp a lot - especially if you try to prevent it using tape....

    I use heavy "Zerkall" paper and it bends, but always in the sides - never in the middle of the paper... IF I taped it, it is locked where it really wants to bend, and then it might do it in the middle of the paper.. Bending in the sides doesn't present a huge problem - it can easily be levelled out again.

    Have you tried a dry blower (for hair)? COLD setting (!!) - you can have the paper set and almost dry in a very short time using this.

  8. #8
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Come to think of it, I have found that taped coated paper buckles more than untaped during drying. This may be the problem here in the sense that it makes the problem worse.

    PE

  9. #9
    eddie's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the ideas. A lot of good ones. It only happens with very textured paper. Smooth paper dries flat. I do use paper safes, when they're available, but they're often filled with other papers. This is happening with 8x10's, and my goal is to go to 20x24 (or larger), so I want to nip this issue in the bud...
    I'll let you know how it works out.

  10. #10
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    Eddie,

    How do you coat? Puddle Pusher, brush? I've only gone as big as 11x14 (with a 12-inch Puddle Pusher). I've tried coating that size both dry and wet. It didn't take me long to decide that wet coating is the only way to go that big (needless to say: my opinion based on my experiences/paper). My work flow doesn't fit with your current situation, but I'll throw it out anyway. This has been a very good thread with great ideas. I hope this will be a useful addition.

    Right before I'm ready to coat, I thoroughly soak as many sheets of paper as I think I'll need, and one by one, lay a sheet of paper on its own piece of thick glass, cover the paper with a sheet of 5 mil mylar, sqeeegee hard to remove all excess water, remove the mylar and do the next sheet. (The mylar protects the paper from any squeegee damage.)

    When I coat, I pour a puddle of emulsion near the top of the sheet and immediately pull it down the sheet with a Puddle Pusher. No paper buckling at all. I keep a atomizer bottle of Everclear ready to spritz the paper if I see any bubbles. The paper dries on the glass as flat as you could ask for. Your challenge would be figuring out a way/space to allow the paper to dry in the open air in the dark. Aside from that, I'm guessing you'd be as satisfied with the technique as I am.

    (One detail: Both ends of the Puddle Pusher are wrapped in tape. I use eight wraps for hot press paper. If you're coating rough paper, you might need more wraps. Also, I rinse the PP in hot water and dry it after each coating.)
    Last edited by dwross; 10-26-2012 at 07:12 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    www.thelightfarm.com
    Dedicated to Handmade Silver Gelatin Paper, Film, and Dry Plates.

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