Washing prints in a basin

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arigram

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Since I find the cost of an archival print washer outrageous, I have not forked out my precious little money to get one, so I wash prints in a plastic basin which I have added a wine-bottle tap. The basin is a bit larger than the 30x40cm (12x16") prints I do and it sits under the running water tap and drains down the sink.
I have the prints loose, image to image and back to back so they don't stick and don't really wash more than 10 fiber prints at a time even if I'll go up to 20 for resin coated. I can't remember the height but it must be around 20-30cm. I always hypo-clear the fibers before the wash.
My question would be, is that good enough for archival washing?
I haven't measured the time it takes for the whole basin to empty, but how fast would it be good enough?
 

clogz

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Hello Ari,
For RC prints a 3-4 minute wash will do.
For FB prints: 2 minute wash, then Hypo Clearing, then a 10 minute wash for single weight paper. For double weight:15 minutes.
Hans
 

Donald Miller

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I typically wash my double weight fiber prints for a minimum of thirty minutes in an archival washer. More usually that is extended to 45 minutes to one hour.
 

Les McLean

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I'm with Donald, 45 to 60 minutes in an archival washer is my normal time. Using the method you describe with prints image to image and back to back does not guarantee that all fixer will be removed, there is a danger of uneven washing. Before I used an archival washer I used a Kodak Tray Syphon on a tray one size larger than the largest print being washed but put only two in the tray and regularly turned them over. It was tedious but I never had a problem with staining etc.,
 

clogz

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Donald & Les. Do you use hypo clearing agent?
 

Les McLean

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clogz said:
Donald & Les. Do you use hypo clearing agent?

My washing procedure is as follows;

Fix print and place in holding tray that has water just trickling through.

When next print is made it is placed in the trickle tray and the previous print is moved into a holding tray of fresh water. This sequence is followed throughout the printing session.

When all prints have passed through the trickle tray I put them through a Perma Wash solution, 5 minutes, and then into an archival washer for 45 to 60 minutes.
 
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arigram

arigram

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Hans, are those times with an archival washer?
Les washes them for an hour in archival washer. Considering that I get payed 600 euros a month, a 30x40cm archival washer would need two-three months worth of paychecks to buy (with normal expenses), so until I can make some more money I'm trying to control my budget.
So far all my prints have come out ok, fiber and raisin, but I won't know if they would stain and fade in a couple decades.
Five fiber prints in my basin float very loosely inside and the water change is good enough I believe.
 

Claire Senft

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test to be sure

The best way to be certain that you have adequate washing is to test for residual fixer.

The way I wash prints is to create a make do cascading washer. I use 4 16x20 trays in a stand and a Kodak tray syphon on the top tray. The over running water splls from the top tray to the next etc. I wash 4 8x10 prints in each tray that I separate with 35mm wire reels. The prints are induced into the bottom tray and are moved upward when 1/4 of the time has passed. I have tested this method for residual fixer...kits are available from a number of sources and easy to use.. and have an established time to meet my needs for the regimen that I use.
 

Donald Miller

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clogz said:
Donald & Les. Do you use hypo clearing agent?

My procedure is two bath fixing...followed by selenium toning...followed by hypo clearing agent bath...followed by the wash times that I indicated earlier.
 
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