This section is from the "Studio Light Incorporating The Aristo Eagle - The Artura Bulletin 1917" book, by Aristo Motto. Also see Amazon: Studio Light Incorporating The Aristo Eagle - The Artura Bulletin 1917.
Many photographers have a habit of taking exposed plates out of the slides and putting them in a plate box until they are ready to develop. There is nothing wrong with the idea, but the way the plates are laid in the box makes a great difference. The first plate should always be placed in the box glass side down. This prevents the emulsion side from coming in contact with any chemical dust or moisture that may have been taken up by the pulp board of which the box is made.
When you lay the first plate in the box glass side down, and the second plate glass side up, with nothing between the two, you bring the emulsion sides of the two plates together, and they will be perfectly safe until you are ready to develop them.
Traces of perspiration and chemical impurities are transferred from the fingers to the backs of plates during handling.
These marks from handling will do no harm if the emulsion sides of the plates are always packed together. But if the first plate is laid into a box emulsion side up, and the next plate the same way, the emulsion side of the first plate comes in contact with the finger marks on the glass side of the second plate and these marks are offset on the emulsion. When the plate is developed, the marks sometimes show as distinct finger prints and sometimes only as irregular opaque blotches. Bare hands never come in contact with either the glass or the emulsion side of a plate in manufacture or packing. The plate makers and packers wear clean gloves and they handle the plate entirely by the edges. Plates are always packed in the boxes face to face and back to back.
Handle them the same way in your dark-room and you will not have any of your negatives ruined by finger marks.
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