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Thread: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

  1. #1

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    Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Hi There,

    I'm in the process of designing and acquiring equipment for the wetside of my darkroom.

    I found this picture on google and it looks like the best solution as it would drain away any splashes directly into the tub. The problem is i cannot find any material online that is similar. Does anyone know what it is he/she is resting the trays on? Have any of you got a similar solution that is easy to pick up at a shop somewhere?

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  2. #2

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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Looks to me like a standard shelf from a wire rack sitting on two PVC sewer pipes cut to length. You can get them both at Home The Pot.
    Michael W. Graves
    Michael's Pub

    If it ain't broke....don't fix it!

  3. #3

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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Even cheeeper, easier is cutting up 2 or 3 pieces of 2X4 lumber that go across the length of the tub... (Space them so they will support your size tray) They can just sit on the tub ledge, and easily removable for normal tub use... (They will store upright behind the bath door, in the corner) Give the raw wood a power or hand sanding to remove splinters, and apply 2 or 3 coats of outdoor Varathane to waterproof it... And if you find an old small tabletop or board (Ikea type stuff), you can have an additional flat surface for smaller stuff, too... (Seal the edges) So you can hose or shower these after you finish... And this is much sturdier, without vibration or bounce... And you can reach the tub underneath for additional storage space while you work...

    (In fact, as I type this, I'm processing/washing sheet film on one of these in the bathroom...)

    Steve K

  4. #4

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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Where are you located?

    Shelving: http://www.homedepot.com/p/ClosetMai...4717/100040570
    They can cut it to length at the store. This type of shelving is available from several hardware stores

    The support looks like pipe: http://www.homedepot.com/p/VPC-6-in-...06-2/202564459. I might be slightly worried about the stability of using the pipe.

    Steve's idea of using 2x4's is good, although you could combine the two ideas and use the 2x4's cross-wise across the tub to support the shelving. One advantage of supporting the shelving with pipe is that the shelving can be lower than the side of the tub, which would help with containing splashes or "oops" moments. One advantage of using 2x4's for support is that the size of the tray is not limited by the size of the tub.

    Regards,
    Rob
    Last edited by rbultman; 8-Aug-2015 at 05:32. Reason: typos
    My flickr stream

  5. #5
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    I'd go with Steve's design. Add a small piece of wood beneath the front of the 2X4s to keep them from sliding forward and dropping into the tub. Tray racks that vertically stack trays saves space and reduces some bending over. Many years ago Richard Mfg. Co. of Fernandina Beach FL made plastic coated steel wire racks for this. Used sets may still be found online.

  6. #6
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Milk crates or the fold-up stands short people can stand on would be preferable to sewer pipe for me. Might as well pick up a piece of anti-fatigue or yoga mat for your knees if you're going to be working at that height.

  7. #7

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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Having seriously thrown my back out once washing prints in the tub, I recommend that as long as you are making stands for the rack you make them long enough to use the trays while standing. Otherwise, it looks like a great idea.
    Thanks, but I'd rather just watch:
    Large format: http://flickr.com/michaeldarnton
    Mostly 35mm: http://flickr.com/mdarnton
    You want digital, color, etc?: http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradofear

  8. #8
    LF/ULF Carbon Printer Jim Fitzgerald's Avatar
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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    I use a small camp stool to sit down while developing in my tub. I cut a piece of Hardi Backer cement board that is rigid enough to hold the weight of trays unsupported from below. I develop negatives up to 14 x 17 this way but I need to use the toilet and counter as well for this size. Doable but tight. I've made all pf my carbon prints in the same set up. When I move in a few months things will be different.

  9. #9

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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Make sure you use the little caps for the 4 cut ends to avoid scratching the tub. 2 5 gal buckets (or equivalent size where you are) would be a good support.

  10. #10

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    Apr 2014
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    Re: Darkroom Bathtub Tray Stand

    Thanks for all your suggestions.

    Unfortunately live in the UK so I don't have the luxury of cheap hardware superstores such as Home Depot. I will have a look around in our equivalent but they are nowhere near as inexpensive.

    I'd not considered the bending over issue! I had simple wooden planks over the bathtub in my last flat and it frequently ended in disaster. For this set up I want something more solid like you suggested. I am looking at narrow folding tables that would fit into my bathtub so there would not be as much bending over. This would obviously not be as good as the grate for drainage but comfort while I am working negates this.
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