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  1. #1

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    Kallitype Stain?

    Here's another version of the Cathedral door detail printed with the kallitype process.



    This one is dev'd in Borax/Rochelle Salts and cleared in Citric Acid. No toners applied. The Paper is Arches Aquarelle HP 300g

    My question here is why am I getting the stain most noticable at the top of the image? Is this incomplete clearing? It is clearly where the sensitizer was applied.

    I have printed this before with just Borax dev and dont remember the stain on the same paper.
    Any ideas?

    Cheers

    Phill
    It is not tradition that secures the survival of our craft, its the craft that secures the survival of our traditions.

  2. #2

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    Phil,

    There are several possibilities. You may have coated the top of the print with more of the sensitizer than the bottom.

    On the other hand, I am not sure how much of the bottome we are actually seeing. There also appears to be stain on the sides and bottom of the print. If this is so, then something is wrong with the basic procedure, i.e. either your paper may be one that does not clear well, or your developer is base and the iron stain started then, and if not then, in an ensuing wash.

    The Borax/Rochelle Salts are not good developers for kallitype, IMO since they work at a base pH which encourages the formation of iron stain. Try one of the devopers used for Pt/Pd such as ammonium or sodium citrate, or potassium oxalate.

    But I really like the photo.

    Sandy King




    Quote Originally Posted by philldresser View Post
    Here's another version of the Cathedral door detail printed with the kallitype process.



    This one is dev'd in Borax/Rochelle Salts and cleared in Citric Acid. No toners applied. The Paper is Arches Aquarelle HP 300g

    My question here is why am I getting the stain most noticable at the top of the image? Is this incomplete clearing? It is clearly where the sensitizer was applied.

    I have printed this before with just Borax dev and dont remember the stain on the same paper.
    Any ideas?

    Cheers

    Phill

  3. #3

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    Cool photo.

    Looking at the step wedge, it would appear that you have a clearing problem. You seem to have the same tone in steps 18-21 that you do at the top and I would expect paper white by that end of the wedge (at some point at least). You could verify a clearing issue by masking part of the coated surface during exposure.

    -Paul

  4. #4

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    Sandy, Paul

    Thanks for the replies. I have some sodium citrate now so I wiill try it with the acid dev. Cheers

    Phill
    It is not tradition that secures the survival of our craft, its the craft that secures the survival of our traditions.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by philldresser View Post
    Sandy, Paul

    Thanks for the replies. I have some sodium citrate now so I wiill try it with the acid dev. Cheers

    Phill
    Phil,

    Just make sure the developer acidic after you mix it up. There are acidic and base types of sodium citrate and if you have the base type you will need to add a bit of citric acid to make it acidic.

    The staining may also be happening in the water baths. If your water is alkaline this is highly likely. I just skip the water bathes and go directly to the clearing baths.

    Sandy

  6. #6

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    Sandy

    My water supply is very alkaline and high in calcium deposits. I use a water bath between dev and clearing which I will omit as well. I also did not know that sodium citrate could be base. Fortunately I have lots of citric acid.

    Thanks for the help

    Phill
    It is not tradition that secures the survival of our craft, its the craft that secures the survival of our traditions.

  7. #7
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    I eliminated a similar problem by making my first rinse slightly acidic. I follow Sandy's procedure of utilizing a single tray. This enables me to mix 500 ml of dilute citric acid and use about 30-50 ml to acidify the first rinse. When I follow this with a running water wash prints are 70-90% cleared prior to placing in the clearing bath.
    [FONT=Comic Sans MS]Films NOT Dead - Just getting fixed![/FONT]

  8. #8

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    Thanks Jim

    I'll give it a try. I do an acid rinse for cyanotypes just never put 2 and 2 together :rolleyes:

    Phill
    It is not tradition that secures the survival of our craft, its the craft that secures the survival of our traditions.

  9. #9

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    I have been trying the Sodium Citrate dev tonight (on Arches Platine) and still see some of this stain. Whats more is when I pour in the developer I get a grey/black precipitate forming over the image. I assume this is the silver being removed! The preciptate gently floats off, but its this that leaves the stain. So I have come to some half baked conclusions
    1. that I may have an agitation problem and I'm not removing the precipitate fast enough and it stains. My trays are about an inch bigger than the paper which does not leave much room for movement of the paper and chems. I will try the next image with a bigger tray.
    2. the dev volume is not enough (I use 300 ml for a 5x4, which I use for 5 prints max). First print tonight did not have stain, all subsequent prints using the same dev solution have go it.

    Other observations :
    The colour of the Sodium Citrate deved image is very cocoa in colour. Nice for some images but toning will be needed for others
    I lose about 1.5 stops of contrast by using Platine and Sodium Citrate compared to Aquarelle and Borax/Rochelle salts. Is this possible?

    Phill
    Last edited by philldresser; 12-27-2006 at 07:19 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: Added paper and 2nd idea
    It is not tradition that secures the survival of our craft, its the craft that secures the survival of our traditions.

  10. #10

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    Hi, Phill. I see you're busy printing away!

    A yellow stain is always going to be ferric oxalate trapped in the paper. I'm not sure how this would effect the kallitype process, but I might suggest adding a small amount of EDTA to the ferric oxalate solution. About .5 g per 25ml would be more than enough. I would suggest trying it with a very small amount of ferric oxalate in case the EDTA precipitates the silver nitrate from solution.

    We find that many papers are difficult to clear completely, so adding a small amount of the EDTA to the sensitizer means there is already clearing agent in the image. The EDTA is also a chelating agent and aids in the solubility of iron compounds, so it's used in many fertilizers to help the plants absorb iron from the soil.

    I've only had experience using Borax and Sodium Acetate as developers for Kallitype, but I'm suprised to read that Sodium Citrate is causing the silver to precipitate.

    It's a silly question, but have you tried developing your images upside down? Many gum printers I've talked to will do that to limit staining. Perhaps it could work as a fix for you.

    I'm always a little skeptical of using acids as clearing agents. I've seen Daivd Michael Kennedy pulling his hair out using HCl as a clearing agent. Acids are used as hardeners in silver fixers. The literally harden the gelatin on the surface of the print. Starches, gelatins and gum arabic are all used as sizing agents in modern papers. These compounds can harden when exposed to acids and trap you emulsion in the paper. This leads the printer to harsher methods of clearing.

    I recommend to my 'hard luck' cases a combination of potassium metabisulfite and sodium sulfite to clear the most stubborn prints. 20-50g of each per liter of water will clear a tattoo off the back of your hand! Not really, but almost!

    A funny anecdote, and then I'll leave you alone: My wife bought a very nice, and extremely expensive set of sheets for our bed. About six months after she bought them disaster struck.

    One afternnoon I hear a scream and whimper from the laundry room. I run in expecting to find her bleeding on the floor. Instead, she's holding her sheets in one hand, and a red sock in the other. She had left the sock in the washer from a previous load and had missed it when loading the whites. There were streaks of red on her sheets and she was nearly in tears.

    "I'll be right back, I'm going to work, you find grab the mop buck from the garage and wash it out!" I yelled, as I grabbed my car keys and ran out the door.

    I returned home with 250 g of pottasium metabisulfite, 250 g of EDTA and 250g of sodium sulfite. I filled the bucket with about 6 liters of hot water from the tap. I stirred in the contents of each container I procured from work. The sheets then soaked for about 2 hours, after which I dumped the whole contents of the bucket into the washing machine. I set it on HOT and punched start. "Just you watch, honey, you can clear the worst pigments out of a gum print with the stuff I brought home!"

    "Huh?" Was her reply.

    45 minutes later I was a hero. My wife lifted the sheets from the washer and gasped in amazement.

    "Wow! Not only did it completely remove that stain, but I've never seen these sheets come out SO WHITE!!" She said, with an incredible sigh of relief.

    I decided at that point that someday you'd see me hocking Sullivan's Super Miracle Laundry Cure on late night TV. Maybe when advertising rates get cheap enough?

    Thanks for reading.

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