DKT has it right. After trying latex and vinyl, I find the Nitrile gloves to be very satisfactory.
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Well...fwiw, I really suit up in the darkroom most of the time...I wear goggles & a smock as well as gloves when mixing up chemistry at work--and often wear safety glasses w/shields when tray processing, toning or running the deeptank. One time...once, I left the goggles off during a deeptank run (mind you this is 30 minutes or so in the dark) and splashed dev. in my eye--had to use an eyewash in the dark. I worked with a guy who once got a crystal chunk of hypo lodged in his eye & couldn't use an eyewash--had to go get it removed in an emergency room. It's like a carpenter working with a tablesaw for 20 years and one day cutting his finger off by accident. These things can happen--you can never be too careful.
Originally Posted by Aggie
I was only playing devil's advocate for your lab tech friend. Your school probably has a safety officer or someone who makes sure the school follows a "hazard communication" plan or whatever they call it in your state for the workplace OSHA safety laws. Even though you're not an employee, but a student, the school would be stupid not to have a safety plan in place for those who use the darkroom. You can get OSHA to train employees on everything under the sun from respirator fit tests (which in a workplace, to wear a resp. you need to be certified), to help with latex sensitivity & allergies. The MSDS sheets are the tip of the iceberg....
I wear gloves when developing prints or toning, not the type that Doctors and dentists wear, just plain kitchen gloves. There are two reasons, one, to keep my fingers dry so that the when I handle paper during a printing session there will be no risk of contaminating the next piece of paper. No matter how well you wash and dry hands after being in fixer you cannot totally remove it and the risk if marking unexposed paper is high. The second reason is that I hate to have stained and dirty finger nails due to the effects of chemicals.
When I have taken the print through the dev, stop and fix I rinse my gloved hands in warm water and dry the gloves on a towell to ensure that I have no carry over of chemicals.
I just had a flashback to the days of working in a class 100 Clean Room. Some of us did not like the sweaty hands caused by wearing "clean room" gloves all day, so we had the option of wearing "Finger Cots" - one latex covering for each finger.
We used to call those (drum roll, please...) "Condom-minimums"
Ed Sukach, FFP.
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well, see that's what finally got me--sensitization to pHisoderm which is a neutral pH type cleanser--not a soap. I actually use Dove now in the darkroom--and use gloves all the time. I use nitrile or vinyl that run up my arms--for the deeptank. I wash these & dry them at the end of the run. I use the disposable vinyl gloves for everything else and will sometimes burn through a box of 50 easily in a day....but when I used to tray process full time--I mean 8-10 hrs a stretch for 4-5 days a week. At first I did what you do--ran my hands through the process, then washed them with pHisoderm quickly, dried them off and did it again. It was all that excessive washing & wet time that did me in...and you know--it's funny going to doctors with this sort of problem--they tell you to not wash your hands period. Wear gloves all the time. Not get your hands wet. You ever had to work in a lab, and not get your hands wet at least once in the day? Then you get into using vaseline on your hands, or using creams & lotions--but all that waxy, greasy stuff is great for your hands but lousy for prints & negs...or you could use barrier creams, but they're not quite as effective....some people even wear disposable gloves inside of other gloves because it's possible to get sensitized to the powdered gloves or some of the liners they use. Sometimes I can't find the nitrile gloves, and use the vinyl inside of a latex glove.
the bad thing about chemistry is that repeated exposure to it, can cause sensitization. You could be fine, for years & years and then it's all over...my thing with the cleansers was a real wake up call for me, because I thought for awhile I had developed metol poisoning or sensitized to some component in the processors and that would have been bad news. But probably the worst thing that could happen would be to become sensitized to Latex. I sorta worry about that more now than any of the chemistry...
i use examination gloves and a vapor mask when i mix chemicals. vapor mask when i process and print about 50% of the time ( with a vent in the ceiling). when i process film ... i tray process everything in ansco 130. most of the time with no gloves, but once in a while i use exam gloves to see if i can do it, or if i can't feel the film well enough in the dark to shuffle. after the water bath, it goes into the fixer, and i put on the gloves. the rest of the ride i wear the exam gloves. prints ( ansco 130 again) i do the tongs and gloves thing all through.
i don't get alergic reactions, or have any aversion to chemicals on my skin. just figure the less contact, the better ...
you burned of your fingerprints too?
i burned mine off coating glass with collodion
they came back though. i do have cracks/breaks in my fingerprints though, from what i have been told, it is from "fixer burns" ...
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I would recommend Nytril gloves over vinyl. My daugther-in-law works in a dentist office and developed a vinyl allergy. The problem is it not just vinyl - its becomes anything rubber. Pens, streering wheels, gear shift knobs, camera bodies & lenes, etc. She continuily has to fight it down (BTW, she had to change jobs because of it). In her case the allergy seems to be what ever chemicals they use to process or vulcanize the rubber.
I changed to nytril because of it.
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