There is normally a lot of confusion when it comes to using a dip tank. How long do you leave the screens in for developing vs reclaiming, what chemicals to use, this guy told me this, but I’ve been trying this. Let’s try and answer this as simple as possible in this Dip Tanks for Dummies post.
The first thing we will cover is reclaiming a screen in a dip tank. For starters you are going to want to use a 2 in 1 emulsion and ink remover style chemical in your dip tank, we recommend Dipper Stripper to get the most out of your reclaiming process. Follow your dip tanks instructions on what the chemical to water ratio is and stick to it. Don't be cheap thinking i'll add less and make it last longer because you wont and later on you'll be complaining that the product sucks and didn't do its job.
When reclaiming you will card away as much ink as possible like normal, then go ahead and dunk your screen into your dip tank filled with the Dipper Stripper or any 2 in 1 chemical and let it sit for a couple minutes. The key is to have the chemical help you loosen up the ink and emulsion, not to fully remove it in the tank.
Some people also wonder how long their chemical will last. By letting the ink and emulsion start to fall off in the dip tank you are shortening the life span of the chemical because its going to stay active attacking the ink and emulsion particles. This also has to do a lot with how many screens you are doing and also how long you are leaving them in the tank.
The simplest way to explain this is that a bear hibernates in the winter time. So, the 2 in 1 chemical is hibernating while there isn’t any emulsion or ink to keep attacking. By not letting the emulsion and ink break down in the dip tank you can extend the life of your chemical.
Now you can also use a dip tank to help develop screens. The only difference here is that you are going to have a tank devoted to developing, and this one will be filled with water.
For developing you would let your screen soak in the tank after you do your exposure. Let it soak for a few minutes and take it over to the washout booth where you will finish washing the screen to get your image. That's all there is to it guys, go give it a shot and good luck.
Catch you guys later and remember if you have any questions drop a comment below on this blog or reach out via Instagram or our live chat.
- SPD Crew!