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Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: Ray Morgenweck ()
Date: December 03, 2011 01:44PM

I am aware of premixed chemistry, from several sources has came, and some has went, over the past few years.

It seems to me that its been a two edged sword, while more are introduced, many are stymied by problems since they then lack the background 'mentality' of how it 'works'.

Calls for help on internet forums sometimes get astute answers, other times replies are hilariously wrong, but given with good intent.

thoughts?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/16/2011 01:02PM by Ray Morgenweck.

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: phuphuphnik ()
Date: December 05, 2011 08:25PM

Well, I'll tell ya,
you remember about 10 months ago when my chems went all wonky? I tried everything to get it to work right, Ty spent an hour on the phone with me, Artcraft was WONDERFUL help, and even sent me new stuff. Still no good. I ordered the ready made collodion form B&S and have not had a single issue. I agree with you that it is a double edged sword, though. An understanding of the chemical processes and how it all goes together is helpful if you need to troubleshoot, but I don't think that it is a hard and fast necessity.

Anyway, it has been a huge help to me, I was about to toss the whole thing out the door, the premix saved the bacon.
cheers,
chriso

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: Richard Mellor ()
Date: December 06, 2011 11:52AM

'Well, I'll tell ya,
you remember about 10 months ago when my chems went all wonky? I tried everything to get it to work right, Ty spent an hour on the phone with me, Artcraft was WONDERFUL help, and even sent me new stuff. Still no good.'


With all due respect, if you got chemicals twice from art craft and you still could not make it work . It really sounds like user error. In one of your prior posts
asking for help you came to the conclusion that you were plunging the plate before the collodion had set. hundreds of users are making their salted collodion and developer from the chemicals from artcraft (without problems)





Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/06/2011 04:37PM by Richard Mellor.

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: phuphuphnik ()
Date: December 06, 2011 05:16PM

Richard,
Believe me I'm positive that is the issue. I was doing something wrong along the way. I hope I didn't give the impression that it was faulty chemicals, it was User error mixing them. I was giving credit to Artcraft for standing by their product and trying to help me figure out the issues.
My point is that I was about to leave the hobby. I tried the B&S kit as a last resort and it has never failed me. Rain or shine so to speak. In my case the premix brought the enjoyment back because I didn't have to worry weather or not I had effed up my chems. When things calm down a bit at home, I'll try rolling my own again but for now...
cheers,
chriso

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: Monocle ()
Date: December 13, 2011 12:34PM

Just out of curiosity, who sells premixed chemistry, and in what amounts?

Frank Brower
Monocle Photography
Bangor, Al.

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: AmberMai ()
Date: December 14, 2011 03:34PM

Bostick and Sullivan sell premixed chemistry.
I thought about buying it but decided to get the individual items and mix. It has caused me quite a headache at the outset but in the end, it worked and I'm so glad I did it the tough way, for exactly the reason Ray states. I feel like I'm gaining an understanding of how it works and will therefore be able to troubleshoot down the line. The learning curve has been tremendous especially for me, since I hated chem in high school. Never thought I'd have to use it in real life!

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: profkleindorf ()
Date: December 15, 2011 09:04PM

It,s cheaper to make your own.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/30/2012 02:09AM by profkleindorf.

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: Mark Osterman ()
Date: December 21, 2011 07:59PM

Understanding the actual process is as important as understanding the difference between over exposure and over development. You don't need to be a chemist, but if you actually want to make images on a regular basis with the wet collodion process, you need a basic understanding of how to mix the chemicals and what each element of a solution does.

Formulas are just a starting place. What works in the Southeast may not work well in the West or the South. If something works well all summer and then stops in the winter...you need to know why. If you can't work your way out of a jam, it's a very frustrating and expensive way to make the images you want by happy accident.

Most of the solutions used in collodion are as easy to make as instant coffee. Learn how to make them and what they actually do. It's the difference between learning a few phrases in a language or enough of the grammar to form your own sentences.

Here at George Eastman House we teach the grammar.....


Mark

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: redbird ()
Date: January 05, 2012 10:52PM

Well I'm going with Mark on this one. The other nice thing about making your own is that you can kind of craft your collodion (a bit) and your developer (alot) to make accommodations for thing like weather, what YOU want the end look to be etc.

The one thing that does interest me about premix though is getting chemicals to a distant place. Here in NYC there is no way but driving that I can get my chemicals into the "field". Frankly I'm less likely to drive and more likely to fly. I don't think I'd like to do a shooting trip to a distant place, dunno say the painted desert or Vegas and then have to mix in a bunch of chemistry. I've looked into it a bit and getting certified to send such chemistry seems really onerous. Has anyone done that? I'd be really interested to hear a positive experience in that type of certification.

When traveling I'd welcome decent fairly fresh collodion. I guess B&S makes quick clear?

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: davidjohnlotto ()
Date: January 26, 2012 04:17PM

It is certainly nice to have to have the option of Premix chemistry when needed and Dana( bostick & sulivan)is so helpful... The chemmistry is always right on!

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Re: Premixed Chemistry...has it been a help or a hinderance?
Posted by: johnmilleker ()
Date: January 26, 2012 07:06PM

I'm a darkroom junkie and love mixing my chemicals. I did buy the pre-mixed kit from B&S so that I knew what to expect from a quality mix. It also gave me time to perfect the many other aspects of the art without worrying if I mixed something wrong. If there was a problem, it was something with my technique.

Now I mix everything from raw chemicals and I'm glad B&S gave me an idea of what I should expect in the end.

I wouldn't hesitate to buy their kit or other mixed components again if I got the the point where I didn't have time to roll my own.



davidjohnlotto Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It is certainly nice to have to have the option of
> Premix chemistry when needed and Dana( bostick &
> sulivan)is so helpful... The chemmistry is always
> right on!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/26/2012 07:08PM by johnmilleker.

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