Sunday, January 26, 2014

Printing with Fiber Papers in the RC

Printing with fiber papers

Open up the enlarger lens all the way to focus. Use a grain enlarger to insure critical focus.
Then stop down the lens about 2-3 stops to insure greater optical performance from the lens and to insure an adequate printing time.

Control density for highlight detail. Control contrast for shadow detail. Dodge and burn areas as desired to control local contrast. Split grade print as necessary.

Processing fiber papers demands much more diligence than developing resin-coated papers. Fiber papers absorb chemicals more deeply and quickly than resin coated papers. Each step in the development process is timed to insure adequate time for the chemical to have its affect on the paper while trying to minimize the time it sits in the solution to prevent the paper from absorbing unnecessary chemicals which will ultimately lead to a shorter print life. This is why it is important that you don’t leave your prints sitting in any of the chemical solutions for longer than they need to be.

Developer:  2 minutes with gentle agitation. If there are multiple prints in the developer tray, then shuffle the prints by taking the bottom most print and putting it on the top of the pile. Keeping doing this until the 2 minutes are up. Longer development times will lead to greater print density. This is why it is very important that you are consistent in your print processing.

Stop bath: 15 seconds with gentle agitation.

Fixer: Two fixer solutions are used when processing fiber prints. This is to insure adequate fixing.
First fix bath 2 minutes. Drain for 5 seconds. Second fix bath 2 minutes.

Prewash: 3-5 minutes

Fixer remover: 3 minutes

Final water rinse: 20 minutes

Drying: Carefully squeegee both sides of the print off. Then place prints face down on the drying racks or place between photo blotters. 

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