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  1. #21

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    O.k. I am hitting this again.

    I have abunch of 1.3mm plates coming in. Actual vintage plates that I am going to strip down and reuse. I also have a supply of 5" square 1.3mm glass.

    I've also gotten a some formulight hardener from the good people at PF.

    Here is my question -

    It says I can harden the gelatin with this stuff. Harden the emulsion before applying, harden in development, and of course I am using a hardening fix.

    That is a lot of hardening going on.

    While the prospect of my emulsion being harder than the arteries of 67 year-old smoker who has been on Atkins for the last 50 years is nice, I want to do this right.

    I figure hardening the subbing layer is a no-brainer. Easy to do. And since the emulsion goes over it, not too much of an issue.

    Now, I think I will want to harden the emulsion as it is poured on.

    This is the tricky part. Apparently I can treat only as much emuslion as I need, as you can't "reuse" emulsion that has the hardener added.

    What exactly does this mean? Do I have a time limit during which I MUST use the liquid emulsion that I have added hardener to, or, as long as I keep it hot and liquid, can I use this stuff? Does the hardening only happen when the emulsion sets?

    I want to reduce waste as much as possible here.

    Also, would it be wise to harden in development or just save it for fix?
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  2. #22

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    I hope that you are aware that anything over 140 ºF will ruin your gelatin. The heat breaks it down and it does not set as well as it should. Perhaps this was the problem.

    Once you add hardener, as long as the gelatin has not set, it is still usable, once it has harden, it no longer can be re used. IOW, you cannot re melt it and use it again.

    As long as you keep the gelatin from setting, without overheating it, you are fine.

  3. #23
    Ole
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    My authoriyt on this kind of thing (Dr. E. Vogel, in "Taschenbuch der praktischen Photographie", Berlin 1904) doesn't mention hardening developer but instead a hardening step between stop and fix.
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  4. #24
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    possible source for glass

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Kennedy View Post
    In my quest to do some dry-plate photography, I have hit so many roadblocks, from the inavailability of glass less than 2.5mm thick,
    If don't mind cutting the glass and, if you have a five and dime/dollar store/discount type store in you area check their out their selection of frames. I found really cheap ($1) plastic frames that use glass that is about 1.5mm thick (using the ruler/eyeball method). They also had the frameless style (the kind with the four metal clips) with glass that hovers around the 2mm mark.

  5. #25

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    Robert

    The first thing I thaught when I read of your problem is that you put the plates in a paper safe to dry, they need to dry in open air preferably with a fan moving the air around. The paper safe probably confined the moisture and did not allow the emulsion to dry properly.

    Try again letting it dry this time in the open. You might try an experiment and coat a few small plates and let them dry in the light and test them for hardness to see what they will do.

    As for subbing, I have never subbed for gelatin emulsions, all I do is wash the plate well with dish soap,rinse,and dry with paper towel. Some times the edge will come up a little but nothing bad enugh to force me to sub.

    For those looking for plain collodion for wetplate, Mavidon Medical Supply has it too.

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