Ok, what is it with this paper that gives such ugly grainy skies?.
Here is my experience maybe someone can explain to me why the prints look so crappy.
I started a printing session, the negative has a 1.4 range and I started with a #7 solution FO#1 12 drops, FO#2 12 drops, Pd 18 drops and Pt 6 drops....exposed, developed...and ugly, ugly skies, the print was correctly exposed and the tones in the subject area looked beautiful...but those skies...jeez I have never seen anything so ugly in my life....So I thought ok, maybe it is the potassium chlorate, since I dont have any dichromate (it is in transit) I figure I use hydrogen peroxide in the developer as per the tip Clay gave me....so my new emulsion was...21 drops FO #1, 18 drops Pd, 5 drops Pt, and 2 drops sodium platinate 25%.
Expose develop....better but still butt ugly skies. So I thought Ok, I am on the right track, I lowered the FO a little and restrainer in the developer helped, so my next thought was maybe is the "cold snap" thing Sullivan mentions in his book, so I heated the solutions to room temp in a water bath....so, made the emulsion same as above with only FO#1 and exposed and develop....better but still looked like the skies were licked by my dog....so, I am thinking...ahaa...I am getting better result, maybe the paper is too alkaline so if I dip it in oxalic acid maybe I should get more even skies....so I did this, and success.....great smooth skies...but crap! the brush strokes were apparent in the print...so I am thinking ok, I got it handled, I made the same exact emulsion with heated solutions, paper dipped in OA and dried overnight, so nest print.....same ugly grainy skies...
So I finally gave up after many prints and grabbed the platinotype....first print...beautiful, even smooth skies...so now I am weary, I am thinking, Jorge you are new at this, this must be beguinners luck...so I make the same exact print and again...beautiful even skies...and I thinking..ok, lets try another negative with more contrast.....again, perfect...so my conclusion, they should label socorro paper in the catalog not as "advanced platinum" printing but as "buy if you are a stubborn masochist".
The thing is, I love the tone of this paper and the way it dries to give rich beautiful tones...unless there is sky, that is! So, any thoughts, help....or should I use this paper when the subject matter has no smooth even tones only?...if so this paper is more trouble than what is worth.
BTW I have to thank Clay for the tip on the oxalic acid bath, it really is useful.