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Thread: Archival stability of dye-transfer prints

  1. #61
    Drew Wiley
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    SF Bay area, CA

    Re: Archival stability of dye-transfer prints

    Heck, it's all one form of technology or another, and damn little of its is completely original.
    Even wasps knew how to make paper before we did. But I'd merely point out again that
    some processes are more tactile than others, for those of us who have logistical preferences. As far as the final image goes, it has a lot to deal with the specific skills of
    the printmaker and how well a given image mates with the chosen medium. I've seen
    abalone shells printed on inkjet, RC digital paper, as well as halftone carbon (Evercolor). Anything naturally iridescent like looks pretty blaah on a relatively flat paper. Ciba would have done the trick. Need the right tools for the job.

  2. #62

    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Summerville, SC

    Re: Archival stability of dye-transfer prints

    This is an interesting thread. I have always wanted to try this......

  3. #63

    Join Date
    May 2012
    NE US

    Re: Archival stability of dye-transfer prints

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    Type C prints and RA4 processing are not in any danger of disappearing. The market is still
    huge. Cibachrome mfg has recently shut down. Dye Transfer would ironically be one of the
    easiest processes to revive because all you'd need to remanufacture is the matrix film (its
    been done several times already - but you need money!). Dyes are readily available. Window light tests only tell you about permanence in window light; but yes, you could use
    alum foil. The problem with inkjet prints in general is that there are so many possible combinations of paper and ink. You could probably solicit samples from forum members.
    And inkjets probably will hold up better for awhile in UV exposure. But the whole flaw in
    accelerated aging tests is that not all lumens are equal. Cooking some dyes in the window
    is not the same thing as long-term exposure to lower levels of light.

    I was lucky today to get a print sample of Fuji Crystal Archive from Walmart. They told me they are taking out the wet process Fuji machine in a few weeks and going to a Fuji dry paper jet. As I told you, Type C may not be going bye-bye right now, but the writing is on the wall Drew.

    My dye stability tests are almost complete with the setup stage. Have a couple of other items to add this week. I am very grateful to Ctein for some help on this. He poo-poo'ed everything I suggested at the dye transfer forum. From thinking about his complaints, it inspired me to expand my testing to include many other areas I would not have thought of if it had not been for Ctein.

    Drew, the idea for sun testing was not my own. In the 70's when I was showing off my Agfacolor prints Bob Pace, he agreed they were nice color. But he told me the color wont hold up. He told me to paste them up outside and see what happened. So I put up a Agfa color print and a Type C in the sun. Sure enough, within a couple of weeks the Agfa started to fade in the sun. Type C Kodak held up fine within the same time frame.

    Now, Bob may have changed his view on this before he died. I had no contact with him after the mid 1970's. But the sun test idea was his - not mine. And if I had to gamble on who is right, it would be Bob Pace and not Ctein. Ctein seems to be under the delusion that if the idea does not come from within is useless and wrong. But as I said, naysayers are of great use to us as they can force us to take a second look at an idea to defend it from the eternal doomsayer like Ctein.

    In the case of Agfacolor, the sun fade test prediction held up with the verification in the long term test results as well. All my Agfa prints faded within a decade or two, whether in the dark or in a frame with normal household illumination.

    Here is what Kodak said on the subject, from an article in Pop Photography Jan 1982 Have the forum members found Kodak's prediction to be factual?

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