Drying FB Paper

Discussion in 'Darkroom Developing and Printing' started by Neal, Feb 23, 2005.

  1. Neal

    Neal Guest

    I am pretty handy in the darkroom in terms of getting the image I want
    onto my nice easy RC paper, but I've agreed to sell someone one of my
    prints for a pretty good chunk, and I'll be shipping him the print on
    11x14 fibre paper, which I have never used.

    How do you dry your fibre prints? We've agreed that he will get it
    mounted and framed when it arrives to cut on shipping cost (to
    hawaii).

    Thanks for any suggestions.
     
    Neal, Feb 23, 2005
    #1
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  2. The traditional method is to dry the print emulsion side down on a
    screen. Modern fiberglass window screens work fine. The idea is that
    the screen keeps the emulsion side from drying out too fast and causing
    curl. Curl happens anyway but is probably not as severe.
    Another traditional method is photo blotters. These used to come in
    books and rolls with an intermediate sheet of water proof paper. The
    idea is the same as the screens, to allow the drying to happen from the
    support side first. Blotters have the disadvantage of being slow and
    posing the risk of contamination.
    A method I've found works well is to hang the prints using clothes
    pins. One at each side at the top, two more at the bottom corners as
    weights. The disadvantage is that the pins leave marks. If you are
    going to mount the prints you will probably be trimming the edges off
    anyway.
    Heated print dryers were used for commercial and photofinishing work
    but are not good for the emulsion or backing. Let the prints dry
    slowly.
    Flattening is best done in a dry mounting press even if you don't
    dry mount. The technique is to place the print on a sheet of two of
    thick Kraft or construction paper which has already been dried out in
    the press. Put a sheet of release tissue over the emulsion side and
    another couple of sheets of paper over this as a cussion. Dry in the
    press at around 190F or less for a minute or two under light pressure.
    Then place the entire sandwich of print, paper, and release tissue
    under a flat weight to cool for a few minutes. The prints will be flat
    and will not curl. The idea of the release tissue is again to prevent
    the emulsion side from drying out.
    Prints which are to have a very glossy surface must be dried on
    ferrotype plates. This is a process which requires some care and is
    usful only for this purpose. If you are interested in this I will
    describe the procedure I've found reasonably successful.

    Richard Knoppow
    Los Angeles, CA, USA
     
    Richard Knoppow, Feb 23, 2005
    #2
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  3. Neal

    dan.c.quinn Guest

    I use a blotter stack. The stack begins with
    a corrugated board at bottom with a blotter placed
    on top then prints, another blotter and board, all
    topped off with a few books or other weights. The
    stack can be built as high as you like.
    Prints are dry and ready to mount out of the stack.
    Tuck it easily away when not in use. Likely you could
    put one togeather for under $5. I'll provide more
    detail if you're interested. Dan
     
    dan.c.quinn, Feb 23, 2005
    #3
  4. I use a procedure a little different from mostly everyone else "nothing
    new on my part".

    I dry them face up on a plastic screen, I do this because I had noticed
    on the onset some prints face down had screen marks in the emulsion.
    Maybe because I did not squeegee them? Anyway I have yet to see
    water drop marks from my doing drying face up probably because I very
    diligently wash my FB prints. They do curl a lot, but I flatten them in
    a dry mount press using a sheet of acid free board above and below the
    print using a press temperature of 200 degrees F.
     
    Gregory Blank, Feb 23, 2005
    #4
  5. Neal

    PGG Guest

    I simply hang the prints by clipping it at the corner with a binder clip.
    Leaves a little mark, but nothing that bothers me.

    Regardless, how will your customer feel if you send him a unmounted,
    curled fiber print? Even if you use drying screens, blotters, etc, the
    print will still curl without dry-mounting it.
     
    PGG, Feb 23, 2005
    #5
  6. Neal

    bob Guest

    I dry mine face down on a screen overnight and then press them flat.
    8x10 I just stick inside a large book. 11x14 I would probably lay flat
    on a table and press with something like laminated hardboard. Or maybe
    foamcore. Weighted with books.

    If you let them continue to dry unweighted they will curl up.

    You don't mention if you're familiar with FB paper or not. If not, then
    be sure to read about the somewhat different fixing and washing methods,
    too.

    Bob
     
    bob, Feb 23, 2005
    #6
  7. Neal

    Lloyd Erlick Guest


    feb2305 from Lloyd Erlick

    I've got an article on my website about drying FB
    prints. It's under the 'technical' heading in the table
    of contents.

    I like to handle a print in such a way that nothing
    touches the face/image area while it is wet. I decided
    the only way to be sure nothing has contaminated the
    print is to permit nothing to touch it while it is wet.
    Obviously certain things must touch it, like solutions
    and the tray, but I've worked out a working method that
    reduces it to the absolute minimum. That means no
    fingers, gloves, tongs, squeegee, etc. It also means no
    chemical exposure at all for skin, among other things.

    I dry my prints by hanging them, and in place of a
    squeegee I sluice down my hanging prints with distilled
    water, both sides.

    regards,
    --le
    ________________________________
    Lloyd Erlick Portraits, Toronto.
    voice: 416-686-0326
    email:
    net: www.heylloyd.com
    ________________________________
    --
     
    Lloyd Erlick, Feb 23, 2005
    #7
  8. Just one thing--you don't re-use the blotters too many times, do you? Seems
    like a big risk of contamination otherwise (from residual chemistry in the
    prints).
     
    David Nebenzahl, Feb 23, 2005
    #8
  9. Me, I'm a hedonistic philistine. I use an Arkay paper drier.
    Used paper dryers are available cheap.

    I haven't had any problems in 40+ years of drying prints.

    If you buy a used drier you may want to wash the canvas
    for peace of mind. Do it by hand in _cold_ water with
    Woolite (hair shampoo is a dandy Woolite substitute [wool
    is hair, right?], but don't use shampoo in the washing
    machine). The canvas will shrink if washed in hot water,
    why I don't know, it's been damp and hot for most of it's
    life.
     
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Feb 23, 2005
    #9
  10. Neal

    Tom Phillips Guest

    You're likely using a screen that is not chemically inert
    (as far as drying anyway.) Drying screens should not leave
    impressions in the emulsion.
     
    Tom Phillips, Feb 23, 2005
    #10
  11. How do you figure that?
    No they shouldn't but it may have been a different
    screen set than the current nylon? screen I use now
    and what I am doing works so I ain't gonna fix it by
    putting the prints face down :)
     
    Gregory Blank, Feb 23, 2005
    #11
  12. Neal

    dan.c.quinn Guest

    Of course one must be sure, or at least satisfied,
    that all that can be done has been done to remove all
    possible of the chemistry prior to drying.
    After spongeing I pre-dry on a metal grid allowing
    some of the H2O molecules to escape. While still damp
    and quite flexable they are placed in the stack. The
    blotters are of a non-woven hydrophobic material
    which can be found at any fabric shop. They'll
    likely clean as do the screens some use.
    My working premise is, a CLEAN print transfers no
    chemistry. I could argue that the use of blotters must
    be part of any archival sequence. After all else has
    been done prior to drying, the blotter may coax some
    minute additional chemistry from the print. One
    might even think of using a blotter stack as a
    sort of post wash HCA. Dan
     
    dan.c.quinn, Feb 23, 2005
    #12
  13. That's cool--washable, reuseable blotters. Good idea.
     
    David Nebenzahl, Feb 23, 2005
    #13
  14. If you have residual chemistry in the print, then it has not been washed
    sufficiently, and the print is no good, so you might as well ditch it.

    Steve
     
    Steven Kefford, Feb 24, 2005
    #14
  15. Neal

    Frank Pittel Guest

    : In article <>,

    : > You're likely using a screen that is not chemically inert
    : > (as far as drying anyway.)

    : How do you figure that?

    : > Drying screens should not leave
    : > impressions in the emulsion.

    : No they shouldn't but it may have been a different
    : screen set than the current nylon? screen I use now
    : and what I am doing works so I ain't gonna fix it by
    : putting the prints face down :)

    I dry my fiber prints face down on screens from Calumet (zone VI)
    and when I remove the dry prints prints they have the screen pattern
    on them. It looks like the screen made indentations in the soft wet
    emulsion. I am of course carefull not to drag the wet print on the
    screens. I've also noticed that the with time the marks fade. I've
    always attributed it to the emulsion relaxing with time.

    I'm sure that I'm all wet with what the screen pattern is and why it
    fades with time. All I know for sure is that the screen pattern is there
    when the prints first dry and after a while the screen patterns fade.

    My biggest problem is when I get lint, dust, etc on the screens and I
    don't notice until the prints are dry and the junk from the screen is
    embedded in the emulsion of the print. I've ruined more prints then I
    care to think about that way.
    --




    Keep working millions on welfare depend on you
     
    Frank Pittel, Feb 24, 2005
    #15
  16. Well, of course; what I was getting at was the possibility that residual
    chemistry can be absorbed by a blotter and accumulate over time, so that
    eventually you have a *lot* of junk which can transfer back to prints, even if
    the prints have been reasonably well washed.
     
    David Nebenzahl, Feb 24, 2005
    #16
  17. Yes and over time those minute amounts contaminate the prints
    unless one chucks the blotter.
     
    Gregory Blank, Feb 24, 2005
    #17
  18. See given enough time you always find two people that will agree >:-D
     
    Gregory Blank, Feb 24, 2005
    #18
  19. Neal

    Frank Pittel Guest

    : In article <>,

    : > : In article <>,
    : >
    : > : > You're likely using a screen that is not chemically inert
    : > : > (as far as drying anyway.)
    : >
    : > : How do you figure that?
    : >
    : > : > Drying screens should not leave
    : > : > impressions in the emulsion.
    : >
    : > : No they shouldn't but it may have been a different
    : > : screen set than the current nylon? screen I use now
    : > : and what I am doing works so I ain't gonna fix it by
    : > : putting the prints face down :)
    : >
    : > I dry my fiber prints face down on screens from Calumet (zone VI)
    : > and when I remove the dry prints prints they have the screen pattern
    : > on them. It looks like the screen made indentations in the soft wet
    : > emulsion. I am of course carefull not to drag the wet print on the
    : > screens. I've also noticed that the with time the marks fade. I've
    : > always attributed it to the emulsion relaxing with time.
    : >
    : > I'm sure that I'm all wet with what the screen pattern is and why it
    : > fades with time. All I know for sure is that the screen pattern is there
    : > when the prints first dry and after a while the screen patterns fade.
    : >
    : > My biggest problem is when I get lint, dust, etc on the screens and I
    : > don't notice until the prints are dry and the junk from the screen is
    : > embedded in the emulsion of the print. I've ruined more prints then I
    : > care to think about that way.

    : See given enough time you always find two people that will agree >:-D

    :)
    --




    Keep working millions on welfare depend on you
     
    Frank Pittel, Feb 24, 2005
    #19
  20. Neal

    Neal Guest

    I'd wondered about that but assmed that shipping it in plastic
    sandwiched between stiff cardboard would not permit re-curling.
     
    Neal, Feb 24, 2005
    #20
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