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Thread: Unsticking stuck RC prints

  1. #1

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    Unsticking stuck RC prints

    I've got two RC prints that are processed -- but dried face to face. I've been soaking them in PHOTO-FLO infused water for over 24 hours, without much luck.

    Anyone have a secret to unglue them?

  2. #2

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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    No, any back to back, or belly to belly print (or limbo combo) contact with the smallest drop of water between will permanently fuse the RC prints together, and will only tear the surfaces when you try to pull them away... You gotta make new prints...

    Working tip is to make sure there is not even a pinpoint sized drop of moisture between any, and the prints must be well squeegee'd or damp sponged, and BONE DRY before stacking... And make sure that even a sneezed-on finished, filed print does not enter a stack before complete drying of stray spittle, etc...

    Steve K

  3. #3

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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    You won't get them apart without damaging one or - more likely - both. Sorry. Time to reprint.

  4. #4

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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    Quote Originally Posted by paulbarden View Post
    You won't get them apart without damaging one or - more likely - both. Sorry. Time to reprint.
    Indeed, and it is only logical - the emulsions stick to each other more than to their substrate - once dried, nothing can divorce them. I wish all today's couples were like that. Didn't want to be the first with this news.

  5. #5

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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    Despite you naysayers, I'm making progress. These are 8x10 prints, and I've carefully edged in about 1 inch all around each day without any damage.

    NO, I do not have the negatives -- anymore. They were lost in the mail.

    I suspect I'll have it accomplished in a few more days of soaking.

  6. #6

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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    Good luck,
    One word of caution. I have had the emulsion completely slough off of Ilford rc prints when left in water for several days.

  7. #7
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    If they come apart, there may be some loss of gloss; maybe a ferrotype drying would help. It will also curl as water is between the surface coatings and will not dry evenly.
    I bet warmer water would loosen the gelatin a bit if you want to speed up the process.

  8. #8

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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    Quote Originally Posted by xkaes View Post
    Despite you naysayers, I'm making progress. These are 8x10 prints, and I've carefully edged in about 1 inch all around each day without any damage.

    NO, I do not have the negatives -- anymore. They were lost in the mail.

    I suspect I'll have it accomplished in a few more days of soaking.
    Good luck. If you soak RC prints for more than a few days the emulsion starts to slide off the paper....

  9. #9
    sepiareverb's Avatar
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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    Ugh. Memories may be all you’ll have left...

  10. #10

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    Re: Unsticking stuck RC prints

    FINAL UPDATE:

    Years ago, I read that the emulsion of RC papers is ON TOP of the RC coating, not underneath it. And, as has been suggested on this post, that's correct. In trying to unglue this stack of stuck RC prints, I was able to remove one by the second day -- fortunately, it was the most important print. There was some more unsticking on the third day, but today, the emulsion simply slides off when I try to make any separation.

    Lessons learned:

    #1 -- Dry your RC prints ASAP.
    #2 -- Except in an emergency, don't leave RC prints in fluids for more than a day. They might be OK, but handle them carefully, and DON'T even touch the emulsion!

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