The chief complaints made against separate baths are (1) the possibility of double tones, and (2) that the prints sometimes turn yellow and remain so. Such obstacles may easily be removed by exercising a little care. Double tones, may be prevented by soaking the prints in a 10 per cent solution of common salt before the preliminary washing, and by not touching the films with the fingers; and the second objection could not be raised provided fresh solution were used, with no excess of sulphocyanide, if this be the bath adopted.

A very satisfactory solution may be made as follows:

Sodium phosphate. .. 20 grains

Gold chloride........ 1.5 grains

Distilled (or boiled) water............ 10 ounces

This tones very quickly and evenly, and the print will be, when fixed, exactly the color it is when removed from the bath. Good chocolate tints may be obtained, turning to purple gray on prolonged immersion.

Next to this, as regards ease of manipulation, the tungstate bath may be placed, the following being a good formula:

Sodium tungstate. ... 40 grains

Gold chloride....... 2 grains

Water.............. 12 ounces

The prints should be toned a little further than required, as they change color, though only slightly, in the hypo.

Provided that ordinary care be exercised, the sulphocyanide bath cannot well be improved upon. The formulas given by the various makers for their respective papers are all satisfactory, and differ very little. One that always acts well is

Ammonium sulphocyanide........... 28 grains

Distilled water....... 16 ounces

Gold chloride........ 2.5 grains

For those who care to try the various baths, and to compare their results, here is a table showing the quantities of different agents that may be used with sufficient water to make up 10 ounces:

Gold chloride, 1 gr. to 1 oz. water... . Borax .... Sod. bicarSod, car-

12 dr. 60 gr.

16 dr. 10 gr.

16 dr. 20 gr.

11 dr. 20 gr.

11 dr. 40 gr.

14 dr.

Sod, phos-


Sod. tung-


Amm. sulphocya-


17.5 gr.


We may take it that any of these substances reduce gold trichloride, AuCl3 to AuCl; this AuCl apparently acts as an electrolyte, from which gold is deposited on the silver of the image, and at the same time a small quantity of silver combines with the chlorine of the gold chloride thus:

AuCl + Ag = AgCl + Au

When toning has been completed, the prints are washed and placed in the fixing bath, when the sodium thiosulphate present dissolves any silver chloride that has not been affected by light.

Besides the well-known, every-day tones we see, which never outstep the narrow range between chocolate brown and purple, a practically infinite variety of color, from chalk red to black, may be obtained by a little careful study of toning baths instead of regarding them as mere unalterable machines. Most charming tints are produced with platinum baths, a good formula being

Strong nitric acid .... 5 drops

Water.............. 4 ounces

Chloro-platinite of potassium........... 1 grain

The final tone of a print cannot be judged from its appearance in the bath, but some idea of it may be got by holding it up to the light and looking through it. A short immersion gives various reds, while prolonged toning gives soft grays.

Results very similar to platinotype may be obtained with the following combined gold and platinum bath:


Sodium acetate...... 1 drachm

Water.............. 4 ounces

Gold chloride....... 1 grain


Chloro-platinite of potassium........... 1 grain

Water.............. 4 ounces

Mix A and B and neutralize with nitric acid. (The solution will be neutral when it just ceases to turn red litmus paper blue.)

Another toning agent is stannous chloride. Two or three grains of tin foil are dissolved in strong hydrochloric acid with the aid of heat. The whole is then made up to about 4 ounces with water.