Before the rush

Before the rush
by evan-pak

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I have a print which has stuck to the the glass in its frame. I tried to pull it off, resulting in some small tears before we stopped. How can I remove it without damaging it further?

Unfortunately, we don't have the negative, so making a new print isn't an option.

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

I'd recommend option 2: scan the picture in its frame or take a picture of the picture.

If the picture itself can be saved maybe also depends on the used paper.

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I've had good luck scanning pictures on glass for customers. Maybe you scan it at as high a resolution as you can on a flatbed scanner first and then try jrista's solution? That way if getting it off the glass degrades the picture past the point of acceptability at least you have a scan which you can use to make prints. If you are able to get the print off the glass, you can always pay a few bucks to have Kinko's put it on a drum scanner so you get an ultra-high resolution scan from which you can generate any future prints... – Jay Lance Photography Jan 4 '11 at 4:27
I'm marking this one accepted because it seems like a logical first step no matter what physical separation procedure is attempted. I'll report back after we try the separation! – Reid Jan 9 '11 at 16:39
Good luck to you :) – Leonidas Jan 9 '11 at 21:25

I can't say whether this will work for a print stuck on glass, but I recently had very good success separating a bunch of prints that were stuck to other prints by putting the brick of stuck prints in the freezer for about 1/2 hour. I was floored when it actually worked, but I got every last print unstuck this way.

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You could try warming the glass in the areas where the print stuck to the glass. Depending on the type of ink, it may not have permanently bonded, and a little heat might go a long way towards loosening the hold between the two. I would take it slowly, and with care, to avoid smearing or bleeding the ink too much. There might be some quality loss regardless, but if you have already torn the print a little bit, I can't imagine anything worse than that.

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