Need feedback on using paper safes : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Hello there,

I am getting tired of opening and closing paper boxes and black plastic envelopes of printing paper. Do you have any experience with paper safes as an alternative, and if you like them, which ones seem to work best and to be most the most convenient?



-- Scott Jones (, August 11, 2001


The kind I like is or was made in Israel under the Restem name. I also have the same style with a Soligor name. It's a black plastic two drawer gizmo that can be stacked and comes in various sizes; 8*10 & 11*14 for sure. You put some paper in face down thru the front door. Whenever you flip the door open it slides out the top sheet for you. When I first saw it I thought it was slicker than gopher grease. There are red plastic clamps that can be used to hold the doors from being accidently opened.

I started off with one 11*14 unit and put a piece of wood in the back to space 8*10 paper forward. A friend then gave me a bunch of 8*10 units. One even had paper in it that had been left there for 6 months. Even after all that time none had been exposed so I think these units are quite light tight.

If you get a used one, try it out with some paper first. The little arms that push the paper can be damaged. Also, the trays can get bound up and become hard to move.



-- Duane k (, August 11, 2001.

My favorite paper safe is an old Brumberger steel chest with tambour door. It accommodates 11 x 14 and has several shelves so I can keep RC proof paper, 8 x 10 fiber and 11 x 14 fiber plus a bunch of cut up test sheets organized so I can get at them without having to box and unbox as I used to. I think I picked this thing up at a camera show for about 10 or 15 bucks and all I had to do to it was clean it out. I've seen them in the 8x10 size as well.

-- Robert A. Zeichner (, August 11, 2001.

Scott, I've been "suffering" with opening paper boxes for a few months since getting my darkroom up and running - although I'm thinking of renaming it my "darkplace" as it is very compact!! I recently bought a couple of very basic safes from Jessops here in the UK as I couldn't find anyone else who stocked them in the sizes I wanted. I now use a safe that takes 50 sheets of 10x8 and one that takes 50 sheets of 16x12. They are very basic affairs, but they WORK!! They have a small twist lock on the front to prevent accidental opening and can be stacked. If you don't have any luck with any others email me and I'll send you details of how to order as Jessops offer mail order. BTW, they make life MUCH easier. Regards Paul

-- paul owen (, August 12, 2001.

I can't tell you which ones to use - the ones I use and like have no brand name on them for some reason - but I can tell you to avoid the Premier brand. I used them for a while and the latch the holds the lid down fell off after repeated usage. This isn't fatal - you can still use them if you are very careful or if you attach the lid with masking tape when not in use - but it's annoying.

-- Brian Ellis (, August 12, 2001.

I use the 3 compartment metal Premier safes (with spring loaded doors) in 8x10 and 11x14 sizes- they work great and are a big convenience. I also use the plastic single compartment types for less often used paper. They are not nearly as good, although the better quality model with the lid hinged in the middle with a metal hinge are far superior to the all plastic model described by others above.

-- David Rose (, August 12, 2001.

if your extremly cheap (like most photographers) you can make them out of paper boxes. ive made severeal for 8x10 that work great. if your interested i can try to email you how i do it.-J

-- josh (, August 13, 2001.

If you just use VC paper, I've found the el cheapo plastic boxes are ok I have one for glossy DW,one for SW, and one for warm tone.

-- George Nedleman (, August 13, 2001.

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