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  1. #21
    Monophoto's Avatar
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    I built a UV box using spiral BL lamps that works just fine for pt/pd printing.

    I used six bulbs spaced on 6" centers (two rows, three bulbs per row). The height of the box was designed so that the space between the surface of a printing frame the bottom of the bulbs would be about the same as the center-to-center spacing. I cannot detect any variation in illumination with this spacing.

    I put a laid a sheet of aluminum flashing across the surface to act as a reflector before mounting the lamp bases. I don't know if that was necessary or even if it is of value - it just seemed like something that made sense, and I had a roll of flashing left over from a previous project that I could use.
    Louie

  2. #22
    Uncle Goose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mainecoonmaniac View Post
    I made a lightbox out of black light tubes. It works for salt prints, but for cyanotypes, it doesn't work well. The emulsion washes off when a develop it. Don't know why. I'll return to using the sun for cyanotypes. Looks like I'll have to buy need tubes. Any recommendations?
    You can buy unshielded UV tubes for aquariums and such, I believe Phillips makes these in various lengths and you don't need a ballast. You can place them in any TL tube box and they work well for me, I've done Gum prints, salt prints and Cyanotypes with them, no problems at all.

    If you need a type number or so let me know, I can look it up on the tubes.
    Sure, I could give you a boring explanation who I really am but I rather let the Origami do the talking.

  3. #23

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    I used simple 2X20W fluorescent striplamp fixtures and 360BL fluorescent tubes. These are readily available at big hardware outlets. You can also use regular Edison bases and spiral blacklight tubes, as noted above. These are available from the same places. There are two disadvantages to these boxes: the 360BL tubes (with filter) do not put out as much photographically effective light as unfiltered 360 lamps or unfiltered and un-phosphored high intensity discharge lamps; and they are area sources rather than point sources, which can affect sharpness in some cases. The spiral lamps may also have a warmup problem and not reach full output until a couple of minutes after being turned on. The time to full brightness varies with temperature, line voltage, and lamp construction so the output from each lamp can be irregular for several minutes. The tube type fluorescents are less troublesome but still may show some variation, especially at low temperatures. High intensity discharge lamps are excellent, but they also need a warmup period. Commercial frames generally have a special actinometer that measures the UV output and adjusts the exposure time accordingly. Discharge lamps also resemble point sources, which takes care of any sharpness problems.

  4. #24
    Mainecoonmaniac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uncle Goose View Post
    You can buy unshielded UV tubes for aquariums and such, I believe Phillips makes these in various lengths and you don't need a ballast. You can place them in any TL tube box and they work well for me, I've done Gum prints, salt prints and Cyanotypes with them, no problems at all.

    If you need a type number or so let me know, I can look it up on the tubes.
    Hey thanks for the advice! I did a search on the Internet and found a few. I'm going for the Phillips Actinic UV tubes.
    "Photography, like surfing, is an infinite process, a constantly evolving exploration of life."
    Aaron Chang

  5. #25

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    HI Ken,

    Thank you so much for the offer. I was able to find a cached one on the internet. I think I should provided a link here for those interested.

    http://web.archive.org/web/200101270...com/Ubldit.htm
    I made my UV box with these instructions off the net and sourced all the materials for about $250. The ballasts were the expensive part and I was able to get the bulbs for about $4 ea. I have a wood worker cousin who helped with the box, but the whole thing works very well and I get about 5 minute exposures with my gum prints and can print up to a 16x20.

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