Print Dryers.

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by PlasticSpanner, Feb 26, 2006.

  1. PlasticSpanner

    PlasticSpanner TPF Noob!

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    I have a couple of what I really think are print dryers in a load of stuff bought at auction (again! :lol:)

    They're made by Photax and are like a heater element inside a cast housing with a curved, polished aluminium plate, covered with a canvas cover. One is 8X10 size & the other is just under twice that size.

    I presume that when using them I put the print face up on the aluminium surface and lower the canvas cover over it & clip it down? Is this correct and do I need to cover the print with tissue or blotting paper before closing the cover?

    Is there anything else I should know about how to use these?

    Many thanks for any help/advice. :thumbup:
     
  2. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Print goes face up in contact with the canvas. And they only work with fibre. DO NOT use with RC.
    Before you use it you need to give it a thorough clean - especially the canvas.
    It should come off. Give it a thorough wash (washing machine is good - but don't put very much detergent in).
    When it is still wet give it several more rinses by hand in warm water.
    Then soak it in hypo eliminator for 5 minutes.
    Then give it a thorough rinse in warm water - at least six changes.
    Put it back on the drier and use the drier to dry it.
    You can get contamination build up on the canvas and it usually leads to staining the prints so you have to do that wash routine once a year (for average use).
    Fibre based prints can be dried quite hot. The canvas should be stretched down tight over them and locked in position.
    Don't worry if they sizzle.
    When the canvas feels dry the prints will be.
    They may stick to the canvas so they might have to be peeled off.
    This indicates that you have used the drier at too high a temp.
    If you get 'hairy' prints it should polish off when cold. Ironing the inside of the canvas with a hot iron should help cure it.
     
  3. PlasticSpanner

    PlasticSpanner TPF Noob!

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    :confused: Will they?

    Thanks Hertz!:thumbup: I'm on to it now cleaning the canvas. So I shouldn't use it for RC paper? That doesn't take too long to dry anyway and I only have the 1 box of that!

    Welcome back! Where've you been? :D
     
  4. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Drain the prints well before putting them on the drier. They will dry quicker.
    Sometimes water droplets boil underneath the print and it sounds like frying.
     
  5. DestinDave

    DestinDave Master of Non Sequitur

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    I was told once that drying face down on the aluminum gives you a "glossy" print while drying face up (against the canvas) gives you a "matte" print. Any truth to that or do you need different paper types?
     
  6. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Drying face down on the aluminium will weld the print to the dryer.
    I've seen it happen.
    It's because the surface is not smooth enough and offers the gelatine a grip.
    To give the print a true gloss you have to use glazing plates - highly polished chrome sheets.
    It takes great skill - if the plate is too cold then the print isn't glazed. Too hot and steam pockets give you dull spots all over the print.
    One of Photography's lost arts - and not missed by those who have had to do it to hundreds of prints.
     

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