Sunday, June 17, 2012
How to build a UV exposure unit!
As promised, tonight I am posting on how my father put together my ultraviolet exposure unit that I'll be using for my historical photographic processes this summer. And I realize that it's now a bit past midnight EST, but I can't help that I'm still on PST time...so it's still today somewhere in the world!
The concept and construction of the unit was fairly simple with basic knowledge on carpentry and know-how on electrical output. I say this like I was the one doing it, which I wasn't. I mostly watched and carried or retrieved things when needed. But I did capture all that my dad did for me in the past few days to write this post with.
I had done a lot of research on UV bulbs online and in various articles. This source, by Sandy King gives the best information on the different kinds of lighting sources you can choose from. I choose the BLB bulbs because they fit the type of ballasts we had purchased at Home Depot and they are cheaper than BL bulbs.
OK. I'll admit that I just summed up a huge majority of this DIY in one sentence. Honestly, I couldn't keep up as my dad confidently placed this wire with that and striped this cord to connect that one, etc.
I do however have a wonderful web resource for those still needing all the technical information on wiring here.
I'm incredibly lucky to have such a supportive and handy father. I can't thank him enough, he really is the best. :)
And I'm really super proud that I can now say that I have my own exposure unit.
The Cra Lab timer was purchased off of Craigslist. And an interesting story on that: I had purchased the timer from the Rochester Craigslist while I was still in San Francisco. I had a wonderful friend pick it up for me and hold it until I flew home last week. Thanks again Em!
Darkroom equipment is still pricey in the Bay Area and I knew that it wouldn't be in Western New York. My thrifty thinking strikes again!
In total, with the cost of the timer, my entire exposure unit came out to: $182.00
Hardware, wood, electrical supplies: $100.00
(4) UV BLB T8 Fluorescent Bulbs: $47.00
Cra Lab Timer: $35.00
I would factor in a good two days worth of labor by a hard working father too. :)
Hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to make some tests and see what this baby can expose!
Thanks again Dad. I hope everyone else has a wonderful Father's Day.