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  1. #1
    Stephen Prunier's Avatar
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    Darkroom & running water?

    I'm in the design stage for building a darkroom. Other than the final wash of the print do you need to have running water? If there will be a bathroom across the hall would that be OK? I could mix up the chemicals needed before hand so they could be in the trays. I already do my B&W/E-6 in the bathroom. I'm just looking to make prints in the darkroom.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Worker 11811's Avatar
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    I do not have running water in my darkroom and I can work just fine. My darkroom is in the basement, right across the way from the laundry room where there is a large slop sink. I do all my print washing and film developing in the laundry sink.

    For INSIDE the darkroom, I have two five gallon plastic buckets.
    The first bucket contains clean water. I fill it up about 2/3 with water from the laundry sink. The second bucket is for slop.
    When the clean bucket gets empty or when the slop bucket gets too full (usually pretty close to the same time) I take them out dump them down the drain, rinse them and fill up the clean bucket again.
    I bought them at Home Depot just for the darkroom. I use them for nothing else.

    It is, however, a big PITA to have to lug those dumb buckets back and forth all the time!
    Randy S.

    In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni.

    -----

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

  3. #3

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    I used to have my darkroom in the laundry room but later moved it to a spare bedroom that does not have running water.
    I just placed the processed prints in a kitty litter tray with a few inches of water in it then transfer them to the wash sink in the laundry room after I have a few to wash.

    This works well for me.

  4. #4
    bsdunek's Avatar
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    For about ten years I had a darkroom without running water. I worked like Randy S. I had trays of developer, stop and fix, and a tub of water with hypo eliminator. When the tub got full of prints I took them to the print washer in the laundry room. Maybe not the most efficient, but it works well.
    Bruce

    Moma don't take my Kodachrome away!
    Oops, Kodak just did!
    For all practical purposes, they've taken Kodak away.


    BruceCSdunekPhotography.zenfolio.com

  5. #5
    Rick A's Avatar
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    Running water in the darkroom is a luxury, not a necessity. I dont use a slop bucket in my DR, no need, I dont waste that much chemy to warrant one. Keeping clear water on hand is easily handled with a couple of jugs of deionised, and some distilled, for mixing chems. My discards mostly pour down the toilet, those that cant, stored in a marked jug for later proper disposal. I develope film at the kitchen sink, and use the DR for printing and loading film into the can (or LF holders). My fresh prints go in a holding tray until ready to wash, then to the kitchen for that.
    Rick A
    Argentum aevum

  6. #6

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    I do not have running water either. I do all of my film chemical work in bathroom once a film is in a tank. For printing, I have a deep tray with water for temporary pooling place after fixing. I put my paper there and usually take it to my bathroom to do the final wash. My latest procedure works out that the paper never stays in this tray for no longer than 5 minutes.

    What it did was to slow down the pace of my work - which actually was a good thing. I take the paper out to bathroom, wash, then to living room to squeezie and lay it on bath towel. Then I can view the result in more light. I actually reduced the wasted print paper by factor of two....

    It'd be nice to have water but it isn't an absolute necessity.

    I wish I had running water when it comes to cleaning though. I have to move all the dirty trays, tongs, etc to bathroom - wash - dry - and carry them all back in.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  7. #7
    ozphoto's Avatar
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    Me either - although it would be nice to have.
    Instead I fill a 9L bucket and use that to fill my sink that I wash my RC prints in.

    When I process film, I just take the developed film to my laundry sink indoors to rinse - easy as long as I'm not trying to do the laundry right at the same time!

    As others have said - running water is nice, but not necessary - you can always work around it. . . . . . .

  8. #8
    clayne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen Prunier View Post
    I'm in the design stage for building a darkroom. Other than the final wash of the print do you need to have running water? If there will be a bathroom across the hall would that be OK? I could mix up the chemicals needed before hand so they could be in the trays. I already do my B&W/E-6 in the bathroom. I'm just looking to make prints in the darkroom.

    Thanks
    If there is a bathroom across the hall, you can use this. I've used a darkroom without running water for a while - but I won't lie to you - running water is MUCH more convenient and most of all: saves time. It also becomes more important once you start focusing on local bleaching (although you could still do this elsewhere) and really helps when it comes to cleaning trays and the like after a session. The drudgery of carrying water and trays back and forth tends to get to people after a while.

    What are your adjacent rooms? If the bathroom is adjacent or sharing a wall - you can gain access to the hot/cold water supply and tee from there. Most hot/cold supplies are 1/2" or 3/4" copper routed through walls or routed under a crawl space and then vertically run to a fixture. The point being that if you can find them, you can use them.
    Stop worrying about grain, resolution, sharpness, and everything else that doesn't have a damn thing to do with substance.

    http://www.flickr.com/kediwah

  9. #9

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    I don't have running water in my darkroom, you can use a holding tank for prints and take them to another room for the final wash, as for film, use the ilford method Richard

  10. #10
    David Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by clayne View Post
    If there is a bathroom across the hall, you can use this. I've used a darkroom without running water for a while ...
    Yes, it can be done. I have used a laundry separated from the kitchen by a door. Hardly inconvenient, but not ideal. Also, I am not one that prefers to be using darkroom chemistry in a food prep area.

    Quote Originally Posted by clayne View Post
    ... but I won't lie to you - running water is MUCH more convenient and most of all: saves time. ... The drudgery of carrying water and trays back and forth tends to get to people after a while.
    Running water and a drain are not necessary, but don't reach the level of luxury IMHO. In my experience, it's the same as the difference between an outdoor well and an outhouse, and proper indoor plumbing. You can get the, ahem, job done either way, but come on ...

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