Print Washing

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by ksmattfish, Nov 20, 2003.

  1. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

    Aug 25, 2003
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    Lawrence, KS
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    I've been thinking about and trying to find info on print washing. It's amazingly hard to get straight info/answers on this subject.

    I've always used a "white tub washer"; it spins the prints (up to 11x14) around, water comes in the top and drains out the bottom. For my 16x20 prints I've been using a hastily made tray and hose contraption. I follow the paper manufacturers recommendations as far as time goes, and leave the water running the entire time. I use a hypo clear bath with FB paper. I haven't seen any problems with my prints (11x14 and smaller, I just started doing 16x20) yet. The oldest are about 6 years, and show no problems that I can see.

    First off, I guess I should be testing my prints. I know that there is some sort of chem that tests if the prints are clear of fixer, but I don't know what it's called, and so I can't find it on supply websites. Does anyone know what this is called or a brand name?

    I would like to conserve as much water as possible. I have read that removing fixer from the prints is more about leeching and soaking than moving water. Anyone have any info/experience/opinions on this?

    The name "David Vestal" keeps popping up as an expert on this topic, but I can't seem to find his website. It's just people talking about what he said. I'd like to get it from the horse's mouth. Any one have any info on this guy?

    I want to build a better print washer for my 16x20 prints (unless it turns out that soaking is sufficient). Anybody made or seen plans for a big DIY printwasher?

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