Re: Chrome Alum Gelatin hardener

From: Judy Seigel ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 02/08/04-01:04:06 PM Z
Message-id: <>

On Sun, 8 Feb 2004 wrote:

> .....The
> glyoxal works fine when I do a handful of prints at a time and know that I am
> going to get to them in a few days, but they always represent a ticking time-
> bomb after I size the prints.

Clay, you leave me curious-- have you experienced the yellowing from
glyoxal yourself, or only *heard* about it? I've used glyoxal for about 5
years, and only seen this yellowing on a couple of occasions -- and that
*not* over the whole print, just along an edge that had a heavy rim of
gelatin. (And disappeared after a long soak in water.)

And another thought -- do those who've had yellowing from glyoxal RINSE
the paper after hardening?? I did some tests with that a few years ago,
but not specifically for yellowing -- it was for how long you had to
actually soak the print in glyoxal before before rinsing to get the
hardening effect... As I recall (I probably have those notes somewhere,
I'm sure), less than 2 minutes hardening in glyoxal before rinsing didn't
really harden. Three minutes was better, but no problem with 5 minutes --
gave the full hardening effect. Hpwever, I never hardened longer -- maybe
that does the yellowing?

Since that time I do always rinse post-glyoxal...But I didn't get
yellowing before I rinsed -- and always keep paper ready to eat, sometimes
for years.

This leads me to speculate about conditions of the yellowing -- & I have
heard from someone else whose paper did yellow in a drawer... Is it a
combo of particular paper and length of hardening? Or maybe of a heavier
than mine coat of gelatin?

As for other methods of hardening, having used formaldehyde for years, and
suffered the burning eyes and throat even of the most careful use
(outdoors), I don't long for that "hard-to-find" item (tho if you can get,
or forge, a doctor's prescription, most US pharmacies have it). The
trouble with the chrome alum, IMO, is, among other things that presumably
the gelatin will harden as soon as it sets. When I mix a couple of liters
to fill a big tray, I like to be able to stretch use over a few days,
maybe even a week with storing in refrigerator. I've never printed on
alum hardened paper... don't know if there's a difference there.

Received on Sun Feb 8 13:04:25 2004

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