print washer???

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by emile_de_leon|9, Feb 27, 2003.

  1. Hello all,
    I'm finally breaking down and looking/having to buy an archival
    print washer. There are so many on the market but I'm considering
    them all. The Cascade seems cool with its unique, efficent fountain
    like system, the Nova doubles as a filmwasher but is expensive, the
    Versalab is inexpensive but tough, the Cachet Ecowash is efficent
    and not too badly priced, but the one that has caught my eye is the
    Dunwright & Vogel/Adorama acrylic model that is inexpensive(sort of)
    at $499.00 for a 16x20 that also can do 6 20x24's all the way down
    to 4x5's and doubles as a filmwasher(for all types including sheets
    and rolls) too.Seems pretty versatile.
    My question is this...has anyone ever used the Dunwright & Vogel
    washer? And can you offer your opinion on that company's
    products.Also, any opinions as to what you don't care for in
    relation to other companies print washers would be most helpful and
    appreaciated in my decision making process.
    Thanks much,
     
  2. Emile, VERSALAB. It is a lot of washer for the money, even though you will need to assemble it yourself. The D&V 16x20 print washer is also available at Midwest Photo Exchange (mpex.com), at a slightly lower price than Adorama. I've never used the D&V, but I do own an 11x14 Versalab and a Nova 16x20 Washmaster. I like both of them.
     
  3. Emile, I can second the versalab. There is a kit for the 16x20 model that'll handle 20x24 too.
     
  4. Emile:

    I have a Calumet 20x24 washer, that I like and seems to work well. However in the last few months I have learned a lot about the more efficient method of soaking print more that just leaving the washer on for a couple of hours. So what I do is fill the washer and then let the print wash for a few minutes then turnoff the water and block the release valve and let the print soak for a while then wash again for a few minutes. I do this a few times. The fix seems to leech out by just the soaking.

    This method may have some bearing on your decision because you really don't need to buy an ecological archival washer that advertises water efficiency in its method of circulating. The soaking method used very little water.

    Michael McBlane
     
  5. VERSALAB, VERSLAB, VERSALAB!!! Don't waste you money on the other ones. Versalabs are as good as if not better than all the others and they are less expensive. Nothing more needs to be said.
     
  6. I've used many different slot washers in the various workshops, schools, etc. I've attended but I haven't used the one in which you're most interested so I can't comment on it. I would suggest that you ignore anyone who tells you to buy only one specific washer. Most of the upright slot washers do a good job. I like the Zone VI I use but it's certainly not the only good washer out there. My only thought would be to be careful about buying a 16x20 or 20x24 washer unless you consistently make prints in those sizes. If your most common size is say 8x10 or 11x14 a larger washer will not only use more water than you need but it may also be difficult to reach down in the thing to get your smaller prints out. The washer at Anderson Ranch (sorry, don't remember the brand) was like that - it probably was great for 20x24 but it was almost impossible to get your hands down in it far enough to remove 8x10 prints without taking the thing apart. As I recall, they had a special tool that you were supposed to use but it tended to scratch the prints. If you only make the occasional 16x20 or 20x24 print, you can drape the prints over the slots of a smaller washer when needed. I do that with my 11x14 Zone VI on the rare occasions when I make prints larger than 11x14.
     
  7. This new company has an interesting print washer kit. You buy a fish tank in your area and fit their kit into it. A lot less $$$.$$ than a Zone VI. I know - I have the Zone VI.

    P.S. I have no interest in the company, financial or otherwise. Just a suggestion that you may want to look into.

    http://www.fineartphotosupply.com/index.htm
     
  8. I can't speak for the print washer, but the Dunwright & Vogel sheet film washer is excellent. The fit and finish are superb as well.
     
  9. After a quick look through all of this I gotta say this: Can't any of you use a HACKSAW???

    All of these washers, especially the last two cheap ones, can be made out of a fish tank or plastic square tub, and then glue some dividers into it.

    I live in the northwest, so I'm local to Tap Plastics. They will happily sell you cheap sheets of plastic for your tub or tank. Add the hose yourself. There, you're in business for $20 and some elbow grease.

    To keep prints from sticking to the sides, each divider takes two sheets of plastic, each of which has a "rough" (moulded pattern) side. Smooth side in and glue the sheets together, rough side out.
     
  10. I would like to put in a good word for Summitek's Cascade washer. It's not just an ecological question -it uses so little water -- but one of energy conservation; with my old washer when I was in high production no one could take a bath in the winter because there would no real hot water. It is, however, more or less useless for washing 8 x 10 negs, and I would welcome any suggestions posters may have.
     
  11. "I would like to put in a good word for Summitek's Cascade washer. It's not just an ecological question -it uses so little water -- but one of energy conservation; with my old washer when I was in high production no one could take a bath in the winter because there would no real hot water. It is, however, more or less useless for washing 8 x 10 negs, and I would welcome any suggestions posters may have."


    Here here! What's a good washer for 8x10 negs as opposed to prints?
     
  12. Patterson makes a washing tray which has a hose inlet at one end, and then an outlet at the other. Alternatively, there is the tray washing adapter from Jobo, which adapts a hose and a siphon host to an ordinary tray. Both are about $20-25.
     
  13. "...Summitek's Cascade washer...however, more or less useless for washing 8 x 10 negs, and I would welcome any suggestions posters may have."

    I use an 11x14 Cascade to wash 8x10 negs all the time. Simply follow the instructions that came with it, i.e. use a Kodak dental x-ray clip on each negatives and hang the clip's hook over a divider edge. When washing is done, hang the negative to dry on a string using the same hook.
     

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