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Thread: Print squeegee panel anybody?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I'm fitting out a darkroom and have been considering adding a print squeegee panel at the back of the sink to view/compare test prints under standard conditions.

    Does anyone else use one?

    If so, would you be kind enough to post a picture of yours, or describe the materials and construction, size, your workflow, etc? By that I mean do you view them after an initial quick rinse, or straight out of the fixer, or only once fully washed, etc?

    Any pointers appreciated!

  2. #2
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I observe the prints in the developer, then turn on lights for no longer than 30 seconds to make my assessment before moving on to the next correction.

  3. #3

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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I've always used a big piece of plexiglass for that purpose; it sits behind the fixer tray. I'll put a first-fixed and rinsed print up there to have a look. I got it for free from the hardware store because it was scratched. I use a similar (clean) one for squeegeeing washed prints before putting them on the drying screen.

  4. #4

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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I turn on the lights and view my print after it is in the first wash tray. I make a mental note that it is going to dry down. Of course, sometimes a print goes straight from the developer to the trash. I have been known to forget to stop down after refocusing.

  5. #5
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    My training in lith printing gave me the resolve to look at contrast and density in the developer and its amazingly easy to see potential problem areas as the print is there.. I always make darker and lighter versions depending upon where I want the print to fall... sometimes I like a deep brooding print, other times very light and open with only a hint of jet black..

    Dry down is always a consideration , therefore the extra prints ... I usually end up picking the middle print next day for exhibition.

  6. #6

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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I try not to consider too much what a print looks like while in process, as the density will change later, even after it flattens out in the hot press... At least seeing if the highlights have a bare hint of detail when wet, and learning by experience what shadow level will be open or black out...

    A squeegee board to let water drain away from print (for a minute or two), and then a wipe down of wet print (I like using a sponge) should be used...

    Steve K

  7. #7

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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I use white plexiglas, since the print will end up in a white mat. I think I stole that idea from Alan Ross.

    I turn the lights on for a while - if my eyes have not re-adjusted to room light or my print illumination light, I make bad decisions.
    Bruce Barlow
    author of "Finely Focused" and "Exercises in Photographic Composition"
    www.brucewbarlow.com

  8. #8
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    For up to 20X24 prints, I have a big sheet of plate glass propped up at one end of the sink. For bigger prints, I have a big melamine coated board in the next room with a short length of plastic raingutter under it draining into a bucket. The edges are sealed with marine epoxy.

  9. #9
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I did all my silver printing (1977 to mid-1990s) in a university darkroom. no turning white lights on in the darkroom! So I always fixed the print (at least 1/2 the time), rinsed it, then took it to the outer (daylight) room. I would put it on a large slanted piece of white melamine coated board hung on the wall. I would not look at the print for a minute. I let me eyes adjust to the bright light -- otherwise my first impression would be that the print was lighter than it was due to my dialated pupils. I always felt that this was the cause of some students' "dry-down".

    I had an old piece of rain gutter under the viewing board to catch any drips.
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
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    Re: Print squeegee panel anybody?

    I use a 16x20 piece of white acrylic for judging smaller prints. It sits atop, and drains directly into the fixer tray.

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