I've been thinking about the rationale behind doing a contact print rather than having the film in the camera to photograph the step wedge and wondered why Ralph would have written "Alternatively, you could contact print the step tablet onto film, but that will eliminate flare altogether, which is not realistic. "

Its a shame he isn't available to reply right now to defend his thoughts, but I'm not convinced just yet to perform a contact print of the Stouffer step tablet as it will take me a lot more setting up (to rig some shutter to my enlarger or measure the output of a flash unit) and trial and error to get the exposure and other details right. I am using 120 roll film which also makes a contact print more fiddly especially in total darkness (I don't have a safelight for film if there is such a thing).

What Stephen writes regarding eliminating the lens from the test makes sense in theory, but in practice I'd also like to hear about the experience of others who have done both methods to assess how much value doing a contact print really confers over the projection method.