I was thinking of this too. I have the Saunders standard easel and a few other ones. I used to use fixed size easels since they are easy. But some of the standard sizes are too small for my standard photo frames. So I had to get more print from the borders. I tried a couple of things and all work fine.
I have an old easel that there is a knob used to adjust size of the borders. So I adjusted the borders to be very thin, 1/4 or smaller if you like. I also used a 4 bladed easel (like the Saudners) and set the borders to be thin too.
A photo amateur
Sinar P2/F2/Nikon F5/F100/Bronica ETRSi/GS/Saunders 4550XLG/Jobo CPP2/CPE+/ColorStar 3000
I regularly use a Saunders 11x14 four bladed easel and print with a 1/4 inch border.
For small prints (4x5 or 4x6) I have a Beseler borderless easel. This one has two "bars" that are adjustable and I make these to be about 1/16th inch or 1mm smaller than the long dimension of the paper. this holds the paper flat and gives a borderless print.
"She's always out making pictures, She's always out making scenes.
She's always out the window, When it comes to making Dreams.
It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up."
Get the paper flat is the biggest priority. For wide paper cut from roll, you'll have to put on the blade to flatten it. 2-blade probably won't do it.
Add a couple of strong magnets to the arms of a two bladed easel and you will find that they are much better at keeping paper flat.
“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 tried using some double-sided scotch tape tonight to hold the paper flat on the easel and that worked out well. Six small pieces were enough to hold it down and no problems getting the paper unstuck.
I picked up some 3M Scotch 667 double-sided tape from my local office supply store. This type of tape is supposed to be removable and photo-safe and so far no problems at all with the paper. I'm using Ilford MG IV FB so results may vary with other papers I suppose.
I've resorted to the same kind of double-sided tape since I started this thread. It works well, but the trick is not to apply too much pressure when placing the paper on the easel; otherwise the tape will come up with the paper.