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  1. #41
    DKT
    DKT is offline

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    Sep 2002
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    BTW--I still use a siphon with the automatic processors I use at home & work (a 2150 and a Printo). At work, our toning sequence is to turn off the dryer, take the damp print and rewet it in a 1 min quick wash with a tray siphon on one end of the sink. In the middle are the toner(s), then into another tray with a siphon and into another dryer. It takes me maybe 15 minutes per print this way.

  2. #42

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    I'm currently shopping for an archival washer. Anyone using the fineartphotosupply fish tank mod?
    A semi-local shop has a Zone VI and a Kostiner Cascade washer both used for reasonable cost. Opinions on either?
    Thanks
    Barry

  3. #43
    ZoneIII's Avatar
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    I don't know what the "final word" is in print washers but I do have something to share. I would avoid Zone VI print washers. There are several reasons for this. I owned one and returned it to Calumet. At that time, they told me that many people had returned their Zone VI washers for the same reason that I did and production ceased about time. Zone VI washers, at least the later models, had some very bad design flaws. The worst was the fact that if you washed the largest size prints that the washer was designed to take, the prints actually stuck out over the dividers and could fold down over one another impeding the flow of water. In addition, that meant that the compartments were not separate which is an obvious disadvantage. Also, the plastic caps that you laid over the dividers to prevent prints from rising, were not slotted and, for some bizarre reason, the end dividers had ends that were higher so the cap did not even lay on the top of the dividers, allowing the prints to float up. Really terrible design! In addition to that, water only entered the washer at one end. There were other bad things about Zone VI washers too but I just can't remember those things off-hand. Calumet was very nice, as usual, when I asked to exchange my Zone VI washer for a Calumet washer (made by Gravity Works, I believe.) I have had that for many years now and it's great. It doesn't have any of the problems that the Zone VI washer had and it also injects water from both ends of the unit in a cross-fire pattern which gives better and more even turbulence. It's a MUCH better print washer than the Zone VI.

    When talking to photographers, it becomes obvious that many don't really understand the processing of print washing. It is really a process of dispersion and as long as the water has a lower concentration of hypo in it than the paper does, hypo will disperse into the water. You do not need to have rapid water changes - like every five minutes - as is often reported. However, it does speed things to do a total dump and refill a couple times but it's really not necessary. Washing in trays is fine unless you are washing many prints which, unfortunately, is usually the case. But there are ways to do it with reasonable efficiency and I used those methods years ago. You can even wash prints by simply letting them sit in water for a while and then changing the water or moving them to a tray of fresh water. Residual hypo test should be done if you do it this way. But, again, washing works by dispersion.

    There are many designs of print washers on the market. Some are better than others. I would only suggest that you NOT get a Zone VI washer unless it is the older style with the dividers that were taller than the maximum print size that the washer was designed for. Ansel Adams used the old style Zone VI washers. I have no idea what Fred Picker was thinking when he changed the design. But Fred was known for hype more than good design. I used to love reading is sales pitch that said, "Hypo is heavier than water and the last time I check the law of gravity had not been repealed" or something to that effect. Utter nonsense!

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