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September 30, 1978 STORM-TRACK Vol. 1, No. 6

Fairfax, Virginia $1.80/year Bi-monthly

Starting in October, a new star joins the early morning skies as Mike Mogil and two other NWS
meteorologists begin hosting an early bird (6:45 AM) weather show on the Public Broadcasting
System. Mike will be based in Baltimore for this new venture. Good luck, MM!

Since last issue, a letter has been received from fellow Storm Tracker, LTJG Jan Curtis, on
duty in the Indian Ocean at a Naval Weather Service Detachment on the small island of Diego
Garcia. Jan notes a big difference between tropical weather there and his experiences along the
Atlantic coast while stationed at Norfolk. “Clouds from cirro-cumulus to lenticular are quite
common.” Thunderstorms are quite rare but “when it rains, it pours” -averaging 120 inches a
year. Double and triple rainbows have been observed, along with the “green flashes” at sunrise,
“and -of course- the beauty of the southern hemisphere night sky.”

– – – Sounds nice for a “hardship” tour.

Those who have a Kodak Carousel projector can buy a low wattage bulb that is easier on your
slides: the ENH 120V 250 Watts. The standard bulb that was being pushed when I bought my
Carousel several years ago was the ELH 120V 300 Watts. You may have to look a little to find
the ENH, but your slides will appreciate it.

FUNNEL FUNNIES: “Just leave the money, and let’s go!”

-Contributed by Randy Zipser
VI. FEATURE – Cibachrome Printing [by David Hoadley]
This issues feature presents the author’s experience with Cibachrome printing, as well as his
initial efforts at any kind of print making. It is not offered as an endorsement either of the
process or equipment. Rather, it is intended to dispel some of the mystery surrounding printing
and some of the inhibitions that readers may have which black their venturing into this area. I
had long been dissatisfied with the print quality from inter-negatives of slides and was
reluctant to send originals to the sometimes chancy fate (smudges and scratches) of Kodak
printers. Having promised myself to thoroughly study the merchandise before buying (one
inhibition), I kept putting it off because of the research necessary to properly do this.
Finally, and somewhat impulsively, I made the plunge -in response to a sale. The following were
purchased for about $600:

(1) Beseler dichro 67 enlarger; (2) El Nikkor f2.8 50mm lens; (3) EPOI PRINTROL – Electronic
Enlarging Timer; (4) Beseler Power Supply’, (5) metal print-framing board; (6) Chromega Dual-
Action Agitator; (7) Cibachrome Color Processing Drum; (8) Cibachrome thermometer; (9) Falcon
print dryer (cranking rubber rollers) and wire drying rack; (10) rubber gloves; (11) Cibachrome
Glossy Print Spray; (12) Cibachrome Chemistry Kit Process P-12; and (13) Cibachrome 8 X 10-inch
color print material-Type A (20 prints).
Briefly, here’s the procedure (assuming all the gear is set. up and plugged in).

(1) Separately mix three solutions -developer, bleach and fixer. Although the bleach is mixed
with a powder at over 100 deg F, it must be cooled (brief refrigeration helps) to 75 deg F
within 3 deg F. All solutions must be in this range.
(2) Apply the proper colored-filter-mix to the enlarger for the slides being printed
(Kodachrome, Ektachrome, etc.) as specified on the back of the print package. This mix will
vary with different print packs, depending on the color balance of a particular production run.
(3) Set the electronic timer and adjust the f stop on the projection lens.
(4) Arrange the framing board to properly position the print to be placed on it, focus the
image, turn out the lights, remove print from pack and place on board.
(5) Depress timer button to automatically expose the print for the pre-set time.
(6) Remove the print, place in the plastic processing drum, cap the ends & lights on.
(7) Over the next 9 minutes, pour in each of three solutions (90ml. each) and mix.
(8) Remove the print with rubber gloves (protects finish and fingers) and rinse with running
water at 75 deg F for 3 additional minutes. Since I rinse by hand, I allow an extra 1 to 2
minutes for a thorough job (more professional procedure would be to use a special rinse tub).
Too short a rinse can leave a blemished print.
Total elapsed time is about 20-25 minutes per print, allowing time for drying the drum (after
each print), focusing and setting up for the next exposure Incidentally, by using 80ml. rather
than 90ml. for each mix, you can process up to 24 prints from a single P-12 kit (listed for 20
prints). One disadvantage -when mixed, you have to use the chemistry within 3 weeks or one
solution fails. Some misconceptions which didn’t prove out:[(a) Although no bouquet, the odor
is not a problem. I have never felt the need of a fan or made any other special arrangements in
this regard (darkroom is in a moderately large basement); and (b) The chemicals aren’t that
acid to exposed hands. I usually rinse off splashed solution -but ignore occasional drips. At
the worst, the bleach will give a slow burn as from a car battery’s water -nothing more.”>
Before discarding the chemicals, all are mixed together and a baking soda type powder is added
to neutralize the acidity and protect your plumbing -on the way out. Incidentally, don’t add it
all at once or you’ll have a foaming witches brew boiling out all over the place. Another
inhibition that delayed my start in printing was the assumption that I needed an enclosed dark
room with running water. Not so! I set up in the corner of a basement, 20 feet from a standard
wash tub and -when necessary- cover the windows with aluminum foil and tape. I occasionally
vacuum around the enlarger However, the normal moisture in a room with a washer and dryer tends
to suppress free floating dust. Prints left out on a table overnight have surprisingly little
or no dust on them in the morning.

I have found that, contrary to Cibachrome’s advertisement, you don’t necessarily produce
“prints as rich and detailed as your original transparencies.” A weak contrast slide which
looks good in a projector will look worse when printed. Any fault in a slide will be magnified.
Likewise, a sharp-colorful slide will give an excellent print. However, a slide with too much
contrast -such as made with a Polaroid filter on a bright day- will produce a print with the
light areas bleached out and lacking detail. This can be controlled by “dodging” or “burning”
your print exposure, which is the selective shading of the print to suppress or high- light
parts thereof. This is a highly challenging technique, difficult to master, and is still part
of my “learning curve.”

However, one uncompromising standard that was satisfied from the outset has been image
sharpness. Cibachrome can produce prints distinctly sharper than comparable work done by Kodak
(both using the same original slide). Moreover, you need no longer entrust those valuable
slides to Kodak’s sometimes careless handling.

When thoroughly dry, I spray each print with Cibachrome Glossy Print Spray. It protects the
somewhat delicate print surface and permits wipe-cleaning of smudges. Finally, if you want, to
print from negatives, you need only add one or two more pieces of equipment. In short -like
anything else- once you learn the routine, its not half bad. After one or two superb prints,
you should be hooked. Then you can experiment with changing filter values and exposures to
enhance or dramatize individual slides. Good luck. – Hoadley

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