Assembling a darkroom setup on the Cheap.

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by Hamster, Jan 8, 2006.

  1. Hamster

    Hamster Member

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    I have just recently mored to a new city and so I parted with my previous darkroom setup, very sad, I had sold my home made enlarger as scrap. The reason being I was never able to take advantage of my 4x5 enlarger as I never managed to find the right lenses a a reasonable price. I was hoping to get myself a briefcase size enlarger.

    Today, I cam across a 135mm Fujinon Enlarger Lens with 45mm mount for US$10 and I was very tempted to get it, as I have an on-going project to built my own LF camera.

    So my questions is, is the Fujinon worth getting at this price? And secondly, is there an "easy" way to built an condenser enlarger?

    Also, I bought today a "FUJINON-EX 75mm 4.5 enlarger lens", that is something I can definately use, but can anyone here shed some light on what sort of optical arrangement is in this lens? I am thinking I can use it as an modest potriat lens for MF as well as enlarging.

    And finally, I will be getting a 100mm Bellows-Takumar on M42 mount for free in a few weeks, it is possible to adapt this for enlarging? Do I need to mount it in reverse on the enlarger. And when I have this, will this make the aforemention 135mm Fujinon redundant for 4x5 enlargement?

    Many thanks
     
  2. dylder

    dylder Member

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    Unless your just wanting to build the enlarger for the fun of doing it... Just watch the auction sites, you will be able to pick something up cheap. I have a beseler 45 that I paid less than $50 for with carriers, lens and timer. The seller was in a remote area and would not ship. I was the only one to bid. Ended up driving about 6 hours round trip. Good Luck

    dw
     
  3. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Fuji made various enlarger lenses. Supposedly on par with the other guys. For $10 you can't go wrong.

    Making a condensor enlarger? I guess if you can make your own condensor-) Diffusion is easier but for just 4x5 buying will likely be cheaper.

    I don't know how big the throat of the bellows is but I bet it might be a little too tight.
     
  4. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    I agree with buying on the cheap on Ebay. You should be able to get a Schneider, Rodenstock, or Nikkor lens for $50. For the time and money it takes to figure out if the $10 lens is really worthwhile, you should have bought the better lens.
     
  5. Nige

    Nige Subscriber

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    I have a Fujinon 90/5.6, came with an enlarger I bought. I think it's a EX, they also had ES models I think. It compares favourably to my Schneider Componon-S 80/4 (whatever the good one is called). Only reason I use the 80/4 is the better operation afforded by the 'stop down' lever that it has (you flick the lever to go from printing aperture to printing aperture and back for focusing and composing).
     
  6. Hamster

    Hamster Member

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    I might give that lens a go then, I can always disassemble it for lens element reuse if it turns out to be a dog.

    Making would not be too much touble as I live in China and have access to lots of overrun parts and bit leftover from production of various industrial and consumer items, I am quite confident there will be some leftover from some lamp factory that I can use. My problem is ebay shipping is very expensive from outside and I might be liable to tax.

    Making a condenser is not to difficult as I have already located the lenses.

     
  7. Murray@uptowngallery

    Murray@uptowngallery Member

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    Fujinon-EX lenses are 6-element and well respected, although not as widely used as the 'big 3' names.

    I'm interested in how this goes for you.

    I'm planning a homebrew horizontal enlarger in part because I want to be able to modify it for different light sources (homebrew cold head and homebrew point source). An assembled enlarger may be harder to modify, but I guess difficulty is a relative term when faced with building one from scratch AND getting it aligned.

    I'm thinking industrial aluminum extrusion like '80-20' or Bosch. Local metal recycler caters to artists, roughly $1-1.50/pound for aluminum parts, varies with market.