How tall is your sink?
We have recently moved to a new home. I now have room for a permanent darkroom in the basement. I am enjoying planning the darkroom and reading all the threads about it.
One question I have is about sink height. I am building the sink base out of wood. I will build the sink liner out of stainless steel. When standing at the sink for long periods of time, I don't want to get a back ache from leaning over. I'm 6'0" tall. I was thinking about building the sink so that the bottom of the sink would be 40" from the floor. The sink walls will be 6" high. Does this sound ok? How tall is your sink?
I'm 5'11". When I was building my sink, I had the "tub" done and I simply put it on some saw horses and tested the feel of it before figuring out the final height for the base. I have a leaning rail that my arm rests on as I'm agitating the trays, and I made sure that everything felt comfortable. I think 40" sounds a little tall though, but I guess it depends on how high your sides will be. I'll measure mine tonight and get back to you.
I finished my darkroom late last year, if you're interested I've just posted some photos to accompany the drawing at:
Have fun with it.
Mine is too short. I need to build new legs for it. At the College I print at once in a while, the sink bottom is right at my waist, and has 10" sides. Very comfy!
Looks like you've managed your limited space very well.
Originally Posted by David Ruby
The space I'm taking for my darkroom is 8' x 11'6". I'm building a 7' x 2'6" sink. That should be plenty big enough for the 8x10 contacts that I'll do in it.
I'm not going to be building a darkroom sink for several months ;(, so I am not speaking from the experience of building, but from the experience of being 6'4", and getting a sore back from bending over low darkroom sinks!
I just spent a few minutes drawing 40 and 46" marks on a wall, and I think those heights would be very comfortable for me, but that may make it an inch or two too high for you. The advantage of building your own is that it can be customized for your height and arm length, so if it seems right, try it.
One thing to try is to put the sink legs on sideways 2x4 'feet'. That way, if it is too tall, knocking off 1 1/2 inches is simple.
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I think you should try standing at trays placed on your kitchen worktop and getting a feel for the best height that way. My feeling is that the sink base should be a few inches lower than normal worktop height.
My sink is set atop prefab kitchen base cabinets from Home Depot. At the time it was the simplest means of putting a base together. The installation has worked very well and was economical. I'm also 6'0" and I've not found a sink height of 34 1/2" (bottom of the sink) to be too low. I was afraid it would be, but it's been OK. Were I to build a sink stand from scratch, I think I'd raise it up a couple of inches or so. 40" sounds a bit high, though.
What I did find to be a problem with the initial installation was the lack of a shelf at the back of the sink. I pulled everything apart and put it back together with a wide shelf at the back. If the sink were higher, everything mounted to the wall behind the sink would have to be higher, too. If the front-to-back dimension of your sink is fairly wide, you may find yourself with some difficult reaches if the sink is too tall. Even now I sometimes need a footstool for higher items.
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Anyone can appreciate a fine print. But it takes a real photographer to appreciate a fine negative.
My darkroom is a little under 6x6 square.
I built a sink and a work table using the instructions in that famous 'Build Your Own Home Darkroom' book.
What I did, quite simply, was to build the sink itself as per the instructions, which gave a 'shallow end' depth of about 5 inches and a 'deep end' depth of about 7 inches.
After that, I set it up on saw-horses of different heights and played with developing trays to see what I liked best. It worked really well and am pleased to report that all of my work is done without stooping and my arms are at a very natural angle.
I did precisely the same thing with the table that I built for the 'dry-side' of my miniscule darkroom.
I would, thus, humbly suggest that you do the same thing and experiment a bit to find out what height works best for you.
Max Power, he's the man who's name you'd love to touch! But you mustn't touch! His name sounds good in your ear, but when you say it, you mustn't fear! 'Cause his name can be said by anyone!
As a cabinet maker, I was trained by a man who had a simple rule of thumb for sinks. You should be able to stand comfortably at a sink and place your hand with the palm flat in the bottom of the sink. This is a fun experience when shopping for a bathroom vanity at Home Delay.
I used noseoil's technique, just stood and figured out the height that would be confortable for me both standing and sitting on a stool.