TIP I. I read in a book somewhere that you could use a SHARPIE pen as an acid resist. I was a bit skeptical (as I am about most things - except climate change). But !! on the weekend I made a test plate using my new batch of ferric chloride, and I used a SHARPIE pen to rule up the squares, and write the minute numbering in each square (mirrored of course). And..... lo and behold - when I had finished and cleaned up the plate, the lines and numbers masked by the SHARPIE ink were untouched by the ferric chloride. Surely a technique worth further experimentation.
Tip II. I bought the above mentioned ferric chloride in liquid form from Neil Wallace - In the past I have made it up from crystals - buying it ready made wins hands down in my book (I haven't done a cost analysis). * The liquid can't be mailed - so if you can't get to Melb you're stuck with mail order crystals OR (TIP III) ask you know who if she'll get you some next time she goes up :-). JM