[pure-silver] Re: Cleaning Drying Screens

  • From: "Richard Knoppow" <dickburk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <pure-silver@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 19 Jun 2005 19:15:04 -0700

----- Original Message ----- From: "Adrienne Moumin" <photowonder2010@xxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <pure-silver@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Sunday, June 19, 2005 5:26 PM
Subject: [pure-silver] Cleaning Drying Screens

It looks like this may soon be a moot point, but I still have about 25 units left of Agfa Sistan, so here goes: how does one clean the print drying screens from treated prints, since it is not to be rinsed off?

I am wondering whether thorough rinsing of the screens is sufficient, or should I scrub each one down w/Photofinish (which I believe is designed for solid surfaces) and rinse till the cows come home?

I'd appreciate any suggestions from anyone on this.


Adrienne Moumin

This is one of those unanswerable questions because one would have to know the amount of residue left on the screen, the amount of such residue a subsequent print would absorb, and the effect on the life of the print of the absorbed residue.
Since too much Sistan can cause trouble it seems reasonable to rinse the screens. If you are using plastic window screen it won't absorb the Sistan, it will only be on the surface. Probably a simple rinse with warm water is enough. BUT- I don't know how to test for the presense of the residue.
AFAIK, Photofinish is a mild abrasive. I suspect that if warm water by itself is not enough that the addition of a little dishwashing detergent will get anything off the surface of the screens.
Sistan is a mixture of Potassium thiocyanate and a wetting agent similar to one of the ingredients in Kodak Photo Flo.
An alternative is to air dry the prints. Screens are supposed to minimise curl by slowing down the drying of the emulsion side (which is against the screen) in comparison to the support. Curling is caused by the differential shrinking of the emulsion vs: the support. The Gelatin tends to shrink more than the support so slowing its drying rate down tends to equalize the two somewhat. I've tried drying fiber prints by hanging them with light weights at the bottom, like film, and it works pretty well.

Richard Knoppow
Los Angeles, CA, USA

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