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  • Inkjet print longevity

    I found this site several months ago and had my eyes opened. Livick has quite a long history of posts on the Dpreview site concerning print longevity. He became so obsessed with inkjet print archival ratings that he began his own quest to determine exactly how long inkjet prints wouild last.

    http://www.livick.com/method/inkjet/pg1.htm

    While his testing methodology may or not be up to the best or the most acurate. I can determine that his proceedures are documented and that all of his tests are exactly the same on each type of paper and ink. So, like Wilhelm, the interpolated test results may or not translate to realworld acurate longevity ratings. But, since all the testing methodology is the same, a comparison between the different ink and paper combinations can be made. That is what I have always liked about the test that Wilhelm has done.

    What I found very interesting on his site is that he put three dyesub images through the same tests, the results will surprise you.
    Last edited by KevinBE; 11-23-2002, 10:22 AM.

  • #2
    Wow - this is fascinating Kevin. And a good source since the Wilhelm site seems to be under constant construction. (They now have a note that it will be up and running Nov 25, but I'm not holding my breath.)

    The only other test I would like to see is against prints made via traditional photographic process. Perhaps I'll send in that suggestion.

    Jeanie

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    • #3
      Hi Jeanie,

      I wonder who is doing the work on Wilhelm's site. They must be keying in at least one or two words per day. I can't imagine why it would take this long to re-work a web site.

      I would also like to see a comparison between the pigment inkjets and the traditional printing processes. Livick's site used to have several dye ink printer comparisons but he has since changed to testing only pigment ink tests. In fact his original purpose in longevity testing was to determine how long his Canon S9000 prints would last. When the tests came back so poor he began this crusade to find the ultimate archival process.

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      • #4
        Hey, good find Kevin. I book marked it for more indepth perusal later on but I like how the tests are coming out for Epson so far. I also have been spraying all my prints with a varnish specifically made for artwork and photographs. They have the inkjet sprays but the cost was ridiculous.
        DJ

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        • #5
          Hi DJ, what sprays are your using? I am planning a big project to print and frame images for Christmas gifts. I've almost decided on what paper I want to use but still looking at frames. I'd like for the images to last for the persons I give them to and have been looking into sprays. There are several different coatings available so I am looking for input as to other users success with a particular product.

          Thanks,

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          • #6
            Kevin,
            To be perfectly honest I haven't done a solar test on the sprays but they sure repell water. I get them at an art store. They're called Blair Coatings Clear Spray. I buy Gloss and Matte finishes and pay about $6 a can. Someone mentioned a spray specifically formulated for Inkjet prints and were paying about $24 a can. I thought that was BS sold at a high price but I can't say for sure. The Blair coatings specifically say for use on all types of artwork and photographs so I figure they should work just fine on inkjet with out the high price tag. As I said though, I can't make any claims for longevity. Here's a scan of the product I use.
            DJ
            Attached Files

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            • #7
              Thanks DJ, I'll give it a try.

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              • #8
                Kevin, I have some prints under glass that have been hanging on the wall for six years now, with no sign of deterioration (maybe the air here is cleaner ). I also have been testing a commercial laminate, and those also show no signs of deterioration after a year in my rather sunny office.

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                • #9
                  Hi BigAl, I imagine that your air is cleaner than it is here in Louisiana. I think that I should have no trouble making prints that last. Most tests show that just displaying under glass has a very positive effect on slowing down fading. I am going to try a protective spray just to see what they do to the print.

                  Thanks for your input. I will be looking for your feedback on your experiences with the commercial laminate.

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                  • #10
                    Al, Is the laminate to reduce mold harming the photo? I know in Viet Nam every photo that anyone wants to keep for any length of time is laminated because the humidity is so high. They even laminate photos that go behind glass in a frame. The mold would start forming literally within a couple of months if the photos weren't protected!

                    Jeanie

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                    • #11
                      Jeanie, the air is too dry here (where I am anyway) for mold to be a problem. I wanted to see how efficient the plastic would be at stopping UV, and if it would discolor with time. I'd be worried about the varnish that DJ's using for that reason as well.

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                      • #12
                        BigAl, is that a hot process lamination? If so how much heat is applied to the image? My area has a problem with high humidity almost year round. Are those sprays considered cold lamination? Sorry for all the questions but I haven't explored this process till now and have a lot to learn.

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                        • #13
                          Kevin, it is a hot process lamination, but I can't tell you what the temperature is at the moment. I'll try and find the manual later in the day. The laminating machine can also do cold lamination, but I can't get the sleeves for that process in SA (Cold lamination was discussed briefly earlier in the year on RP).

                          I'm not sure that you'd call DJ's varnish a cold lamination. Rather a sealer.

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                          • #14
                            Just found out that Wilhelm's web site is back up.

                            http://www.wilhelm-research.com/index.html

                            He hasn't posted the results of his Epson 2200 test data yet. But, he does have a lot of test data on the Epson 9600 which uses the same Ultrachrome pigment ink. It looks like all of the black&white test he ran came in at greater than 100 years when kept under glass.

                            His data has to be taken in the proper context. The acuracy of his excelerated test interpolation to real world conditions may be up for debate. What I feel in important is that all of his test are conducted under controlled conditions and each paper/ink ratings are based on identical test methods. While we may argue that his interpolation may not be 100% acurate. You can derive comparisons between the different paper/ink combinations and choose the best combination. I think his work is very important and am glad to see his site back up.

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                            • #15
                              Hi Chuck. I am also interested in printing on canvas. I know that Inkjetart.com redriverpaper.com and several others offer canvas media for inkjet printers. I haven't done a lot of research in that area but will soon because I think that printed canvas would have a commercial application if it had good archival qualities.

                              I can recommend the Epson 2200 for printing up to 13 x 19. The newest large format printers from Epson the 7600, 9600, and 10600 use the same pigment ink as the 2200.

                              If you find any good information about canvas on inkjet I would be interested also.

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