tacking iron.. whats the temp range?

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I went to the local (only one) hobby shop, and they have what they call a covering iron. it's used to heat the film covering on model airplanes and it shrinks tight to the frame. the knob that regulates the temp just has lo, 1 through 10 and hi settings. I called the dist. and they said the heat range starts at about 200 degrees (best guess.), and tops out at 400 to 450 degrees.

question is : for tacking drymount tissue what is the heat range needed?

this thing is $15.00, teflon coated, and appears to be well made. the brand is : Hangor 9 made by horizon hobby. it looks remarkably like that other brand we all know so well that's more expensive. will this work?

thanks for your educated input.


-- dee seegers (deesee@pinn.net), March 20, 2002


Coulkd be the same thing...???

The temp. around 225 degrees sounds about right for drymount tissue... - check with the tissue manufacturer (info in box...).

Zone VI manufactured one with a smaller tip (now selling through Calumet...) Here is the URL:

http://www.calumetphoto.com/default.taf?_UserReference= 88FC9ED89283D25037E819D0.

The smaller tip can be good for corners, although the standard wider "plate" on the regular tacking iron probably works better attaching the tissue to the center part of the print / board...

$15 sounds like a great deal. Try it - If it works you will save some money!!!

-- Per Volquartz (volquartz@volquartz.com), March 20, 2002.

dee, you should tack at about the same temperature used for dry mounting. This depends on the specific mounting tissue you use. Very roughly, the range is about 180 to 220 degrees F with specific types of "low temperature" mounting tissues for color prints at the lower end of the range.

-- Bill C (bcarriel@cpicorp.com), March 20, 2002.

thanks, i neglected to mention that i ordered a drymount press. i don't have it yet. its on the way. also, i don't have any tissue yet as i don't know what i'll need to mount b&w prints, so i don't know what the temp requirements are. different temps for different tissues for different types of paper. ie: fiber, rc, ect. i just wanted to make sure that the iron i mentioned above would cover the heat tacking range of mounting tissues available. any suggestions on types of tissue to use? i heard that there is a kind available that can be removed by repressing/heating. do you favor one brand over another and why? again, thanks for your kind help and information in this matter. dee

-- dee seegers (deesee@pinn.net), March 20, 2002.

if you use a dry mount press (the one i have is by seal), the material to use for mounting is called fusion 4000. this is a plastic material that melts into the mount board, filling in even the minute areas. the tempature to put on the backing of the photograph is 190 degrees for about 30-45 seconds. i don't use a tacking iron with this material. i just place the picture on the material and put it in the press.the actual mounting on the mat is 180 degrees. the time depends on the mount board, but around three minutes for 4 ply mount board is about right. with the seal dry mount press is directions for usage, but try and use only fusion 4000 material. howard

-- howard schwartz (howards@ameritech.net), March 20, 2002.

I Have been using a cheap hobby shop tacking iron for tacking dry mounting tissue with excelent results. I set it at the lowest heat setting and it works perfectly. Play with the heat setting on some scrap prints, it should work just fine.

-- Scott Dordick (acratech@ix.netcom.com), March 20, 2002.

This isn't something that needs to get overly complicated. Almost any temperature will work, the only thing you want to avoid is a temperature so high that while you're tacking the tissue to the photograph the tissue adheres to whatever is underneath it no matter how brief the time. I have a tacking iron from Light Impressions or Zone VI, I forget which. It's been set at around 125 degrees ever since I bought it years ago but I don't think this is a precision instrument and who knows what the temperature really is. If the temperature is on the low side, it just means it will take a few more seconds to work than if it was higher. The one you describe sounds like it should work fine but I think you could get one with known temperature settings (more or less) for about the same price from many photography supply places.

-- Brian Ellis (bellis60@earthlink.net), March 21, 2002.


I have used an even cheaper tacking iron for as long as I can remember (no jokes about my memory please) and it works very well. It is the back of a spoon which has been heated over a stove. works great.


-- Kevin Kolosky (kjkolosky@kjkolosky.com), March 21, 2002.

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