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Archive 2013 · Mounting - hot or cold?

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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Mounting - hot or cold?

I recognize that archival mounting seeks to preserve the art without irreversible damage- but the kind of mounting popularized by Ansel Adams continues to this day - with photographs sealed to a mounting board with adhesive tissue that is activated by heat. There have since been many cold adhesive sheets as well using cold lamination. As I have no experience with either method, I wonder what the experiences of others have been. I have some photos that a customer wants to hang in a lobby and archival mounting is not needed.

Of course, no one like to recount tragedies where one of their prized images became a source of grief. And anectodal evidence is just that, to be taken with a grain of salt. Still I wonder what is less likely to fail with delamination, discoloration and deterioration of the photograph. Is there a thread that has struck a chord for people ?- my google skills do not reveal a consensus.

Apr 14, 2013 at 07:12 PM
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Mounting - hot or cold?

Drymounting with heat activated adhesive is probably still the most popular but digital caused cold mounting with roller presses to be used more because too much heat can ruin an inkjet print. To make this worse, older dry-mount presses do not have accurate temperature control. In either case, their are too keys to permanent mounting. First the adhesive must be evenly and fully applied to the entire print. Drymounting or roller press cold mounting can achieve this with adhesive in a tissue, or already applied to the material you are mounting to. Sprays and liquids make this much more difficult. The other important factor is that the adhesive be fully and consistently activated across the entire print. It is not hard to do this on a 8x10 inch and smaller prints but this is difficult on 16x20 and larger. That is where a dry mount press or a roller press work their magic. A great book on this topic is Mounting and Laminating Handbook by Chris Paschke

Apr 18, 2013 at 06:50 PM
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Mounting - hot or cold?

Be aware that some sprays do not work well with some substrates.

3M photo spray requires a porous board so ends up delaminating if you use gatorboard. It also may not be strong enough for large works (24x36").

I've used Krylon's spray adhesive on large works with good results, but it has no forgiveness for repositioning.

I've even used a gatorboard that came with adhesive and peel off backing which was a near disaster. The adhesive was so strong -- I ruined some mounting with folds. Since the image I was mounting was using Kodak's Endura which is also plastic, I ended up with large air bubbles. Luckily these were for Christmas presents and I could put stacks of books on them for weights. It took literally months to get all the air bubbles out. Unfortunately the gatorboard vendor had not paid enough attention to keeping a clean environment so there were some particles that showed through to the surface.

In the last year I've been using 3M 568 Positionable Mounting Adhesive with good results. Note that it's possible to get some of the adhesive on the face of your work and is near impossible to get it off. So be careful when applying. I've also started applying a protective coating before mounting to help circumvent this problem. Since I do not display with glass or acrylic, it's just altering the steps in my work flow.

Apr 20, 2013 at 06:25 PM

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