Quote Originally Posted by keithwms View Post
With most papers, you can use a red safelight or red filter over your enlarger lens so that you can see what you're doing when you line the film up. I do that to get the framing just right, if I want clean white borders.

Yes, I always do emulsion-to-emulsion, and for bendy negs I weigh them down with a thick piece of clean glass. Everything needs to be dust free, of course.

Rather than pushing and pulling negs in and out of sleeves for successive prints, I move the neg onto fresh paper right after each exposure. Once I get things about right then I just go quickly from one print to the next.

Oh and having your enlarger at f/2.8 probably isn't such a good idea, why not stop it down quite a lot, say f/16 or more, to produce a more collimated beam. That will also improve sharpness. (And, in my experience, a contact print done through a protective sleeve shouldn't be terribly unsharp if you do have a well-collimated light source.)

Do take the time to track down any light leaks that might give you some non-collimated exposure.
Keith, thanks. I was unsure as to the correct setting, I initially used f/2.8 as it provided the largest light source and would decrease the amount of time that I needed to develop the print. I also read (can you tell I'm learning all this stuff on my own...thank goodness for APUG) that I should set the enlarger at its highest setting, meaning as far as it will go on its column. Is this incorrect? Do I need to bring it back down once I have placed the negatives underneath as long as there is enough light to cover the outer edges?