Splotchy (camouflage-like) pattern

digitalnegative
pzdn
digneg

#1

Hello,

Your guidance is appreciated in advance as I need some help in achieving full-quality prints with the P2-K6 system. Here’s the situation.

— This is my first experience with the piezography system.
— Epson 3800
— I followed the directions from the New Piezography Manual with religious devotion.
— The head-cleaning stepped-lines print is perfect.
— The inks appear to all be in the correct locations
— The transparency film is Inkpress Transparency Film. I realize this is not the officially supported film but this issue is only appearing with the tones that are 45% and darker so I’m not sure the film is the problem. Or that it is okay. That’s a variable. Regardless, I have ordered Pictorico and it will arrive on Friday.

Here’s the problem. Starting with the 45% tones and moving towards black the supplied 21-step chart exhibits a blotchy pattern. The pattern becomes more and more defined as the gradient becomes darker. The blotchiness may be present in the lighter tones and simply not visible because they are so light.

My goal with this project is to make negatives that I can use in my 4x5 enlarger to print on wet-plate tintypes. I’d love to hear from anyone who may have done this process and has achieved success with these inks. The OEM inks worked well on the Inkpress Film stock but (of course) exhibited a dithering pattern that was quite distinct on the very sharp and unforgiving tintype medium.

Cheers.


#2

I have a few questions to determine what’s going on, and how to get you happily printing.

  1. Are you using the K6-Matte and PZDN setup with your 3800?
    If so, please check that the Piezography ink shades are installed in the following positions:
    Matte Black= Neutral shade # 1 (printer must be in MK mode)
    Photo Black= PiezoFlush (unused)
    Cyan= Selenium shade #2
    Light Cyan= Selenium shade #3
    Magenta= Selenium shade #4 (for P2)
    Light Magenta= Selenium shade #5
    Light Black= Selenium shade #6 (for P2)
    Yellow= Selenium shade #2.5 (PZDN)
    Light Light Black= Selenium shade #4.5 (PZDN)

  2. If you are using the K6-Matte and PZDN system with inks installed as above, what is the exact name of the curve(s) you’re selecting?

  3. Are you printing from Mac or Windows? What operating system version? If Mac, are you printing from Photoshop or QTR Print Tool?

Please let me know so I can help, thanks~ Dana :slight_smile:


#3

Hi Dana,

  1. This is the P2 K6-matte ink system and their position matches what you listed above.

  2. P2M-PZDN-X800-Meth3-1_4v3 and 1_8v3.

  3. Mac OS X Mavericks. Using the latest QTR Print Tool and QTR 2.7 Mavericks download.


#4

Thanks for the additional information. Everything appears to be correct for your setup, therefore I wonder if the issue you’re experiencing is related to the film, so please let me know how your results look on Pictorico when it arrives.

Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:


#5

Update time. I received and have started using the Pictorico transparency film and the blotchiness seem to be resolved.

Unfortunately I am now dealing with a printer pattern and would love to know if you recognize it. This image is a scan of the 8-ink step chart, printed in Calibration mode.

The head-cleaning stepped-lines print looks good. Nonetheless, I have done multiple head clean cycles and several power cleans. No change.

Any ideas?

—Josiah


#6

Thanks for the update.

I’m glad to hear the blotchiness issue is resolved now that you’re using Pictorico film.

Please tell me, what resolution and print speed are you printing with? Is this pattern visible in all ink channels, or just a specific strip/channel?
Can you attach a recent printed nozzle check for me to examine?

Thanks- Dana


#7

When I get back to my office this evening I’ll scan and post a nozzle check for your review.

The pattern is visible across channels. Mostly in the mid tones. When I post the nozzle check I’ll post more of the channels.


#8

This will be helpful, also the specific print settings you’re using. If the pattern is across all channel ink strips, then it may be an alignment issue- have you tried realigning your printer to the film thickness?

I’ll be waiting for your update to move try resolving this for you.
Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:


#9

[QUOTE=josiahmorgan;2364]Hello,

My goal with this project is to make negatives that I can use in my 4x5 enlarger to print on wet-plate tintypes. I’d love to hear from anyone who may have done this process and has achieved success with these inks. The OEM inks worked well on the Inkpress Film stock but (of course) exhibited a dithering pattern that was quite distinct on the very sharp and unforgiving tintype medium.

Cheers.[/QUOTE]

You can not use Piezography Digital Negatives for anything other than contact printing. You can not use InkPress Film stock. It can’t hold the ink load.

Jon


#10

Dana & Jon,

Here are some images of the nozzle check I just printed a few minutes ago. An overview so you can identity the type of nozzle check printout and a cropped area so you can see the lines I’m experiencing.


#11

Good to know. Thank you!


#12

[QUOTE=josiahmorgan;2584]Dana & Jon,

Here are some images of the nozzle check I just printed a few minutes ago. An overview so you can identity the type of nozzle check printout and a cropped area so you can see the lines I’m experiencing.
[/QUOTE]

Josh, thanks for uploading those. But, can you print the manual nozzle check pattern (which is the stair-step lines). We can tell more about that.

Please print them onto a sheet of glossy photo paper. Not the Inkpress film.

By the way what was the media you printed on to send us the auto nozzle check?


#13

Jon,

Here is the stepped-lines printout:

To avoid any confusion: I am using Pictorico Ultra Premium OHP when printing negatives. I made the switch the moment I acquired the correct stock—I did ready your guidelines, I just didn’t have any during first two days.

Since I started working on this issue I have been printing on glossy photo paper. These prints were made on a Kodak glossy paper, but I’ve also been using some Epson Glossy Photo Paper.

Thank you!

Cheers.

—Josiah


#14

Thanks that is helpful.

So are you still trying to make negatives to enlarge?
Or are you still getting splotchy negatives for contact printing?


#15

Jon,

I’m still using the negatives in my enlarger, but I’m not trying to enlarge very much. I’m working towards a process camera approach so the negative is the same or a similar size. Because my final product is a wet-plate tintype, contact printing is problematic because the surface is so sensitive while still wet. Thus my pursuit of projecting the image via optics.

At this moment, my pressing hurdle is these horizontal lines…

—Josiah


#16

Any thoughts on what cleaning/testing procedures I should try are welcome.

—Josiah


#17

[QUOTE=josiahmorgan;2592]Any thoughts on what cleaning/testing procedures I should try are welcome.

—Josiah[/QUOTE]

I just know from developing this process that you can not enlarge them. I tried that when I was making the system, and that is not a quality that I tried to overcome and can not overcome with pigment ink. If you contact print Piezography digital negatives. There should be no blotchiness. So you are on unchartered territory.


#18

Uncharted territory…familiar territory :slight_smile:

I’m no longer having any blotchiness issues.

Any thoughts on the lines? I’d love to achieve a good paper print and these lines are in the way…

—Josiah


#19

yes - if you can see lines on your photos something is wrong.
So please send us a K7 photograph printed with the inks and a supported curve for it.
Tell us the media and curve you used.

We will examine the nozzle check with a strong loupe to see if there is some vertical electric interference. That usually is remedied by a head cleaning. Some of these disturbances are related to head electronics. I can’t really see anything like that from your scan. It would be in the vertical lines. They look a little rough but best to send it to us. Please print a manual nozzle check, mark it before, print the K7 photograph, then print a manual nozzle check immediately after and mark it after.

send to:
InkjetMall
re: Splotchy
17 Powder Spring Road
Topsham, VT 05076


#20

Thank you!

I’ll prepare these prints and send them your way.

—Josiah