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Articles from The Science Of Fingerprints

Central Pocket Loop

Drying The Fingers

X-ray Photography

Fingerprinting Equipment

Chemical Development Of Latent Impressions

Radial And Ulnar Loops

Classification Of Scarred Patterns

Whorl Tracing


The Plain Arch

Drying The Fingers

In many instances it will be found that the outer skin is gone and the
fingers themselves are saturated with water. A quick method of drying
out the fingers is to place them in full strength acetone for
approximately 30 minutes. The fingers are then placed in xylene for
about an hour or until the xylene has overcome the reaction of the
acetone. After removal from the xylene the fingers should be placed on
a blotter until the surface of the fingers appears dry. They are then
ready to be inked and printed.

It will be noted in this procedure that when the fingers are removed
from the acetone they dry and harden in a matter of seconds. The
purpose of the xylene is to resoften the fingers. After this
treatment, should the resulting inked impressions be unsuitable for
classification purposes, the ridge detail should be photographed.

Next: X-ray Photography

Previous: Water-soaked Fingers

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