Cheap & Easy Contact Frame

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by JamesD, Apr 28, 2006.

  1. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    I figured this was the better place to put this, since it's specificially for the darkroom... if it needs to go in the "How-to" section instead.....

    Anyway... I'd been using a sheet of glass from a cheap picture frame when I made my contact prints, but I stumbled across an idea sometime last night...

    If you get the kind where everything slides into the bottom, even 35mm contact sheets should be easy: just lay the paper on the backing, place the negs on top, and lay the glass on top, then slide the whole thing into the frame. And use a larger frame than sheet... for instance, an 8.5X11 picture frame for 8X10 sheets.
     
  2. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Have you had a chance to try it out? :thumbup:
     
  3. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    Give me an hour or three for a photo. I did a brief test however, merely sliding two sheets into the frame, they appear to keep good contact. The frame I bought has a thick cardboard spacer between the cardboard back and the paper to be framed, which helps with keeping everything in good contact.

    But like I said, gimme an hour or three....
     
  4. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    sure! I'm interested in seeing how it goes. :)
     
  5. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    As promised....

    It works pretty well, but I've discovered the following things:


    If the frame back has the cutouts (the little folding leg so you can stand it up, for instance) replace it or put another sheet of cardstock in front of it.

    Practice in the light, because (at least in my darkroom) it can be a little tricky under safelight.

    It's easiest to have the back and the glass slightly into the frame, then slide the negative/print sheets in... at least with 4X5 negatives.

    I still prefer it over holding the glass down.
     
  6. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Very cool idea. :thumbup: Thanks!
     
  7. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    I don't do darkroom any more but I used to have a contact printer that was a piece of picture frame glass with a piece of masonite attaced to it with duct tape. I just folded it up put the paper and negs down on the masonite side and swing the glass back onto it. contact printer for about two bucks todays prices I think...

    The duct tape was applied like the binder of a book along one of the long sides of the glass. You can make it any size you want. Just a thought from time gone by.
     

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