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  1. #1
    LF2007's Avatar
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    How to avoid making test strips without expensive equipment?

    Hi,

    I've been printing on baryta papers for a while now and found that I waste appr. 2-3 sheets of paper before I have found the right exposure/ density for my print....

    Is there a way to do it correctly the first time without making a test strip and wasting paper.

    I know about expensive equipment available (I think from Heiland) but..... is there a cheaper alternative?

    Thanks!

  2. #2

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    Just about any color analyzer has an exposure mode, they're not much $$. Ilford EM-10(?) and several others like it.
    You still have to calibrate the meter but after that just take a reading.
    Heavily sedated for your protection.

  3. #3
    LF2007's Avatar
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    Thanks! And what about black and white? I only print black and white.

  4. #4

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    Have you ever tried a projection print calculator?

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...tor_Scale.html

    It might simplify your process.

  5. #5
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    If you find the way to do that and hit it everytime for a year or so, buy me a Powerball ticket, will ya.

    Unless you spend days upon days upon days hunched over an easel and then trays in order to build up an instinct for how a negative will look as a print after innumerable variables you can't expect to cheat it with a shortcut. There's no way. And even then, you wouldn't get it right EVERY time. You would be really close, but still garner a second so-how-does-this-one-look sheet of paper.

    Sometimes I wish I had more time and could get to exposure on printing paper I was happy with in less time. And then I recognize my own delusion and proceed as usual.
    Thank you.
    CWalrath
    APUG BLIND PRINT EXCHANGE
    DE Darkroom

    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  6. #6
    Worker 11811's Avatar
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    Whenever I cut paper down to make smaller prints there are always scraps left over. I use them as test strips. I've got a whole box full of them. I've got no problem using two or three test strips to make one print. It's a whole lot cheaper and it's faster, too.

    You can also use test strips to help determine exposures for areas you want to dodge/burn. It's a whole lot better than using a whole sheet of paper.

    It might be more economical to cut one or two whole sheets of photo paper up into test strips rather than use whole sheets when you know there is a likelihood you're going to toss it anyway. Why toss out a whole sheet when you can just toss a 2 inch wide piece?
    Randy S.

    In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni.

    -----

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/randystankey/

  7. #7
    dehk's Avatar
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    Same here, i use left overs or cut my paper in to tiny pieces and position it/them strategically. I can use one 5x7 to do "test strips" for around 8-10 prints.
    - Derek
    [ Insert meaningless camera listing here ]

  8. #8
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    Me, personally, I really like to be able to look at each gradation across a full sheet. I might miss something otherwise. I tried to cut strips from one sheet once, but for me it is very disconcerting.
    Thank you.
    CWalrath
    APUG BLIND PRINT EXCHANGE
    DE Darkroom

    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  9. #9
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    If you figure out what settings are right on for a normally exposed negative, you can then look at any negative you are about to print and estimate how far away from normally exposed it is (in stops), make adjustments on the enlarger to compensate, and you will be pretty close all the time on your first test strip.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2F/2F View Post
    If you figure out what settings are right on for a normally exposed negative, you can then look at any negative you are about to print and estimate how far away from normally exposed it is (in stops), make adjustments on the enlarger to compensate, and you will be pretty close all the time on your first test strip.
    I use this same concept but just look at the projected image on the easel and adjust the aperture till it looks about right, the I use an equivalent exposure. I'm truly surprised how well this works.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

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