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Thread: Darkroom Designs

  1. #11

  2. #12

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    374

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    My 4 trays for 14x17 (internal bottom 16x20.5) butted up agains each other lengthwise is 75 in.

    Figuring a 20x24 tray is proportionally wide 4 trays would take up 94 inch so very tight for a 96 in sink. I don't have any trays for 20x24 so I'd like to know if I can get those trays into a 96 inch sink. BTW, what is a recommended depth of the sink. I mean vertically not out from the wall.

  3. #13

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    Apr 2009
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    374

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    I saw a YouTube video a while ago.... it was from a french darkroom I think... the girl working it had a vertical "polished" sheet metal at the end (after washing) that she slapped the print on and squeeged the print on. As I remember..... ??

    I guess you need a second sink for washer etc. - assuming you keep the tray sink to 96in.

  4. #14

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Peterborough, NH
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    31

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    A number of issues of Lenswork Extended contain video clips showing the personal darkrooms of a number of famous b&w photographers -- with discussions about working habits, layout, useful tips, etc. They are well-worth watching (closely!) several times. You learn to build your perfect darkroom by building several less-than-perfect ones. As someone has observed: Education is expensive! Cheers, Dave

  5. #15

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    374

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    There is a surprising amount of books in print on how to build a darkroom. Then you have YouTube videos and of course forums like this. It's a great time to indulge in an old art.
    Not to speak of purchasing darkroom equipment for practically nothing. I now have equipment for outfitting a large darkroom with multiple enlargers. Even a sink available locally if I can find the space for it. And a LOT of (expired) papers.

    Good times!

    But nothing beats actually personal experiences and advice.

    That's what I am looking for here. Thanks to everybody that have contributed so far.

  6. #16

    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    97

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    A couple of things I have learned as I expanded/changed my darkroom over the years:

    1. Chances are you will change your darkroom. If you put in permanent cabinets, you may have to tear them out later. I use shelves and drawer units that can be taken apart and moved.

    2. You don't have to have everything up against a wall. My darkroom is 14'x14'. I found I could get much more storage and work space by putting a long sink on the wall and a short sink at a 90 degree angle. It cuts the room in half and I have a storage shelf behind it. My work are is U shaped, even though the room is square.

    3. Don't make the darkroom too efficient. When making my latest darkroom, I moved the enlarger a few steps farther away from the sink than it had to be, I put my paper safe a step away from the enlarger, I have to reach to adjust the timer. Stretching, reaching, walking, it makes a big difference in how I feel after a long printing sessions.

  7. #17

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    I comfortably print up to 20x24 gallery grade prints in my 5x6 foot darkroom, did a big show this week in a space houses a large film freezer not to mention snowboards, mountaineering gear, etc.

    The key is to think out of the box and be innovative. For example, all my spendy 4 blade easels are in storage as I have turned the baseboard on my 45MXII into a magnetic easel using 1" strips of plexiglass cut to several different sizes for different papers. I use either 11x14 or 16x20 trays on slide out shelves in a stacked array, developer on top under a dimming Nova 5 Star LED safelight system with 4 heads, two over the tray. For 20x24 I use a Jobo 3063 and it works great.

    All my dodging tools are homemade. I cut three different lengths of coat hangers, painted them flat black and put small pieces of Velcro on the ends to accommodate a wide variety of shapes and sizes including custom ones that live in the file of print editions as a "kit". Burning tools are similar in that there is a rotating cutout with various sizes for all kinds of custom inserts. All this stuff is highly modular so it will require no custom work to the space it goes in next.

    I look forward to the day I can have 400-600 square feet to have 4-5 stations and teach workshops, but for now, my hi tech closet works amazingly well.

  8. #18
    C. D. Keth's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
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    Salt Lake City, UT
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    2,082

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    There's an ongoing thread at APUG with photos of various members' darkrooms. There are literally thousands of photos there with tons of ideas.
    -Chris

  9. #19

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    Apr 2009
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    Re: Darkroom Designs

    I found that french video I mentioned in a previous post.

    What do you think of her darkroom?

    1. She seems to have surfaces above the sink (vertical) in a lot of places, where she can plaster the print on and squeege the water out or doing selective "wash" ?
    What i she doing there with the water hose and a brush?

    3. Does she have a water filled box with two lids, one in the darkroom and one in the fully lit room? I can't tell for sure what she is doing there.

    Neat video!

    http://youtu.be/qz2dC5MXjSY

    /gth

  10. #20
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
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    15,324

    Re: Darkroom Designs

    Really a very well done video, showing the romantic aspects of solid darkroom technique. The French do know how to live!

    I have already sent this video to many and put it on my FB page.

    Show this to students the first day, first thing.


    Quote Originally Posted by gth View Post
    I found that french video I mentioned in a previous post.

    What do you think of her darkroom?

    1. She seems to have surfaces above the sink (vertical) in a lot of places, where she can plaster the print on and squeege the water out or doing selective "wash" ?
    What i she doing there with the water hose and a brush?

    3. Does she have a water filled box with two lids, one in the darkroom and one in the fully lit room? I can't tell for sure what she is doing there.

    Neat video!

    http://youtu.be/qz2dC5MXjSY

    /gth
    2022

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