Convert to UV light box?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Dawn, Jan 31, 2012.

  1. Dawn

    Dawn Member

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    I have an antique light box - it presently contains about 16 regular light bulbs in it (3 of them are red).
    I am assuming it was used for viewing but here's my question...
    Can I put in UV bulbs instead of what's there and use it for exposing?
    I don't want to blow it up and know nothing about electricity (nor can I afford a UV light source other than the sun and that's hard to come by in February).
    Help?
     
  2. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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  3. Dawn

    Dawn Member

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    Thanks!
    Are you suggesting that one would be enough to expose say an 8x10 contact print? I think that I'm misunderstanding you....how would I test it? Or do you mean just to see if it fits/works at all?
     
  4. jeffreyg

    jeffreyg Subscriber

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    Dawn,

    You haven't given too much information. I have a UV light box purchased from Bostick and Sullivan that I use for pt/pd printing. It takes eight blacklight bulbs that are like small fluorescent tubes. It has a fan and can handle up to 11x14. If you don't get the info you want here try calling them (Santa Fe, NM). They are very helpful.

    Good luck.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/
     
  5. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    No I'm not saying that

    Hi Dawn,
    I'm saying that buy one, run a test with the one bulb on a small test print no bigger than 4x5 inches couple inches away and see if it will work. It wouldn't be prudent to buy a dozen and find out it doesn't work. Put your toes in the water before diving in I say.
     
  6. Vaughn

    Vaughn Subscriber

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    Others have built UV boxes around those types of bulbs. I have recently seen a price of about $75 for a dozen of them. Home Depot, I think. They would just screw into a regular light socket.
     
  7. Herzeleid

    Herzeleid Member

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    I constructed myself an UV box a few months back, with the help of Loris from APUG. The thing about the bulb is you are looking for a BL365 ( Blacklikght in365 nm wavelength ). The bulb from the amazon says it is for ambient lighting and it is purple. BL365 bulbs produce blue blacklight. It is UV-A light and it is hazardous to stare at them or being exposed to them for long.

    This one suits your needs. Look for the wavelength, BL365
    http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/522322602/Blacklight_Blue_Compact_Fluorescent_Lamps.html

    Regular light bulbs are E27 socket and I don't think you can blow it up buy using these bulbs. They are usually 20W bulbs, but check your current bulbs Watt in the light box to make sure.

    Edit:
    BTW mosquito trap bulbs might work too. They are BL350.
     
  8. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    Hi Dawn,

    What exactly does your antique light box look like? If you put anywhere from 5 to 16 curley-cue black-light bulbs in, you'll be doing great. Even 2-3 will work, but it'll mean longer exposures.

    If the light box can accomodate 16 tungsten bulbs, it will accommodate compact fluorescents with ease.
     
  9. Dawn

    Dawn Member

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    Thanks, will give it a try!
     
  10. Dawn

    Dawn Member

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    Great info, thanks! Will look it up!
     
  11. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    I use a 400w metal halide floodlight. (as would be used in a gymnasium or warehouse). It was a freebie from an electrician friend. They regularly sell for less than shipping cost if you bought one used online.

    Having a non-sun source is good for evening work of course, and for repeatability.

    You should be able to get blacklight bulbs from lowes/home depot as well for your contact printing light if you want to go that route.
     
  12. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    If the box allows individual or partial by group control your light box might actually be a contact printer.
     
  13. Dawn

    Dawn Member

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    No, but I thought originally it was a contact printer because it has a timer on it. Its just that there are all those bulbs (reg 60w) that all come on at the same time. That's why I inquired. If it is a contact printer then I need the blacklight....right? Regular bulbs would take for ever - or not work at all.
    Going to test it out tonight...just had to get my hands on some supplies.
    APUG is great - thanks to everyone!
     
  14. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    One thing you might think of is that florescent bulbs don't like being turned off and on a lot. Once they warm up, you might just want to leave them on for the duration of the print session. They don't consume a lot of electricity. I just got done building a light box with some black lights I got from Ebay.
    http://www.amazon.com/24-Black-Ligh...=UTF8&qid=1327103871&sr=1-2&tag=5336612507-20

    I'm going to test it next weekend.