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  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jp80874

    If you are going to have music in the room you may want to put black tape over some of those neat lights that pop up, like when you tune stations and receive stereo, a light has to come on to prove it. Some electrical outlets have a light the shines if you have a good ground. Smoke alarms sometimes have a light that flashes every few seconds.

    Good luck.
    John Powers
    Interesting... you raise another point. What about all the like reflecting numerals on clocks as well as LEDs (I have a zone VI compensating timer with LEDS). Can these items negatively impact film???

    So far, I am getting a lot of good ideas and it is most appreciated.
    Often wrong, but never in doubt!

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by esanford
    Interesting... you raise another point. What about
    all the like reflecting numerals on clocks as well as
    LEDs. I have a zone VI compensating timer with
    LEDs. Can these items negatively impact film??
    I think many worry too much of a little light leaking.
    I keep in mind that it is the light the film sees and not
    what I see that counts. Baffle with fabric or some other
    sheet good where a real problem exists. A hinged swing
    arm and fabric may be all you need. Dan

  3. #13
    Bob F.'s Avatar
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    Reflecting light isn't a problem as there won't be any light to reflect... Emitting light however, of any colour, is a big no-no for normal film. Cover them or switch them off. I have a couple of flaps made from black gaffer tape and black fabric that flop over the LEDs that are permanently on in my darkroom (having said that, there is one very feint LED on the light switch that I do not bother covering as it is too dim and so far away from where I load film). Glow-in-the-dark clock numerals etc will not fog film if a few feet away.

    I simply fitted my door as best I could with almost-light-tight draught excluding foam strip and used a curtain of blackout material on the outside to keep it completely light tight.

    You say: "Plus, I only used graded papers which is far more ambient light resistant then VC papers" I do not think this is so... You can typically use brighter safelights around graded paper (unless you use LED or sodium vapour based lamps with VC - in which case you can go just as bright) but not white light - which will as happily fog graded as VC paper.

    Good luck, Bob.

  4. #14
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    I took over the apartment in our back yard when I finally became disgusted with renters who did various amazing things to defrost the fridge. The rear ingress-egress window was blocked with sheet cardboard (just taped to the wooden window frame, still opens), then a dark curtain was hung in front of it to cut out all light. It worked. The building was originally a one car garage which was converted to a rental unit.

    Similar treatment for the front window. Front door does allow a small amount of light to pass at the edges (metal pre-hung with translucent magnetized weather strip), but it is small and does not affect the papers for printing. Since it swings in, I still may tape an extra flap of felt to the edge. I did place a small black paper box on the alarm system key pad at the entry, but this turns out to be overkill, no problems there with reflected light from cabinet doors and the lighted keys.

    All film handling is done with lights off in the bathroom, which is located in the center of the building and has no penetrations to the outside world. With the door closed it is dark, as in 100% void of light. There is an extra sheet of melamine which covers the sink and serves as a work surface on the vanity.

    Since earlier this year, I've been using BTZS type tubes for film processing, so lights-on for most processing is the rule now. This is so much easier than tray processing, I wonder how I got along without it in the past. This would be a great help for anyone with light leaks and tray development. It is just better. tim

  5. #15

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    Light tight? Mine leaks like a sieve.

    Just remember. Light goes straight. It doesn't sneak around corners. So the light leak at one end doesn't really raise the light level in the other end. If I'm really worried when loading film I put my body between the light leak and the film. Not being made of glass I make a pretty good light blocker -)

    I wonder if just using deep trays would be enough. The higher the walls of the tray the harder it would be for the light to get in. High enough walls and the light would need to be right above the trays.

    One other thing is to consider the time of your leak. My leaks are all east side and are worse early in the morning. When the sun goes down they totally disappear but even during the afternoon the leaks drop off in intensity.

    FWIW I load film [sheet and roll film], cut down colour roll paper and process VC B&W paper. All in a room with many leaks.

  6. #16
    jp80874's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by esanford
    Interesting... you raise another point. What about all the like reflecting numerals on clocks as well as LEDs (I have a zone VI compensating timer with LEDS). Can these items negatively impact film???

    So far, I am getting a lot of good ideas and it is most appreciated.
    I don't know if they are a problem. From what I have read others do, perhaps I go overboard, perhaps I am protecting the investment of time and effort I have made on that film.

    When I am loading film (8x10) I cover a Gra-Lab timer #450R and sweep second hands with a paper towel and put the read in the dark thermometer in a stainless pitcher. I don't know if these would fog the film, but when you consider all the work that went into making the film, why risk it now?

    I wear a shoulder harness in the car even though I haven't been in an accident since about 1974. As a salesman I covered a lot of miles and it seemed a worth while investment.

    John Powers

  7. #17
    Ole
    Ole is offline
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    My darkroom leaks too - so much that I do film development by inspection without turning on the safelight.

    I feel worrying over light leaks may be far more damaging than the light leaks themselves.
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  8. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by esanford
    So, I would appreciate any help my fellow APUGERs can provide relative to making my door and exhaust vent light tight. Thanks....

    Ed Sanford
    I waved my profisix around in the darkened room, before trying to lightproof it, and got times like 30' at f/1.0, ISO 6400. Given that result, I don't care anymore for small light leaks.

  9. #19

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    I got some black-out curtain material from a fabric store and hung this in front of the door opening. It stops all light, even though the sliding door I built is far from light-proof. The material can be hung to the side to allow easier entry and exit.

  10. #20

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    I use fire doors on the entrance to the darkroom and the archive room from which the darkroom is accessed. Fire rated doors usually come with a thick black seal around them, designed to keep smoke from entering I assume. However they are also the best light trap I have yet to see on a door. In the past I used the light seals that you can buy and screw to the doors and they worked ok, but they still leaked. With the fire doors I can have direct sunrise light hit the door, which it does and zero light comes through. One down side is that you may need to add a light tight vent as these doors literally seal a room. When I first got them and turned on the AC in the room the positive pressure made it very difficult to open the doors.

    The problem with hanging a fabric curtain is dust, they attract it, create it (small fibers) and shed dust every time you open them.

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