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Thread: Metering Light For Tintypes

  1. #1

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    Metering Light For Tintypes

    Can someone help me out in understanding how you would meter for a tintype? I've heard the ISO can be as little as 2--did I hear that right? Is there some kind of mathematical equation in figure this out?

    I'm very new to these photo forums, so if I'm placing this in the wrong area, please let me know. Also, I'm very interested it talking more about tintypes, so, if someone knows of a better forum for me to be in to learn more about the process and techniques, I'd love for you to let me know!
    Thank You!!

  2. #2

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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    You don't meter for wet plate, since the sensitivity is low and doesn't match the spectrum in light meters. It's all done by experience-- not as hard as you might think.

  3. #3

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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    Quote Originally Posted by BarryS View Post
    You don't meter for wet plate, since the sensitivity is low and doesn't match the spectrum in light meters. It's all done by experience-- not as hard as you might think.
    So it's just trial and error?

  4. #4

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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    Quote Originally Posted by mkvidt View Post
    So it's just trial and error?
    Yes...and experience.

  5. #5

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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    The effective speed of collodion emulsions canbe as low as -10(10 below zero) depending on the ultra -violet radiation at the time and place.

  6. #6

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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    Why not use an actinometer? You know the Watkins Bee-type with a sheet of printing out paper that you turn a bit to expose a fresh section through a small hole in the device. Next to the hole is a reference tone, and you time how long it takes for the paper to reach that tone.

  7. #7

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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    There are a lot of ways that you could go about setting up a system to meter for collodion, but none are as easy as a test plate. If you wanna get real high tech, you can do a test plate that shows a multitude of exposures, like a test strip. I sometimes use this method with larger plates, with steps for 1, 2, 4, and 8 seconds total. Thats if I am feeling really fancy, but normally since you are working on one image at a time it just easier to go from 1 exposure. Collodion isn't really that hard, but we all do our best to over complicate things. Remember, every plate is developed with inspection, so you will know when its right or wrong pretty quickly.

  8. #8
    indecent exposure cosmicexplosion's Avatar
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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    what dave said

    just pour a plate and open dd at 2 second intervals

    find the closest one to what looks good to you

    and go from there
    through a glass darkly...

  9. #9

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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    Thanks a lot all! I really appreciate the advice. I guess another question I have is, how long do you have from the time you make the exposure until you need to get it developed? Is it something that needs to be done immediately after making the exposure?

    Do you all have tintypes you have done posted online somewhere to check out?

  10. #10
    taulen's Avatar
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    Re: Metering Light For Tintypes

    It has to be moist/wet. Depends alot on temperature. All from 10min to well over 30++ minutes.

    edit:
    www.flickr.com/photos/taulen/

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