DIY neg carriers for 4x5 Beseler enlarger?

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by mooseontheloose, Oct 2, 2008.

  1. mooseontheloose

    mooseontheloose Subscriber

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    I've got the opportunity to buy a used Beseler 45 MX enlarger cheaply. It comes with good lenses, but only one negative carrier (4x5). I would need both 135 and 120 neg carriers (at least 6x6 or longer) and don't want to pay more for those than I would the enlarger -- which would be the case if I went through the used department at B&H.

    I've been looking at some old threads and have found some references to making my own neg carriers out of mat board. Is this a decent long-term solution? Does the kind of mat board make a difference? Anything else I should consider?

    Cheers.
     
  2. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    just a good 4ply board will do.

    have you checked out ebay, as carriers go for far less than at b&H
     
  3. pelerin

    pelerin Member

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    Hi,
    My experience is that they are not satisfactory as they do not really stay flat over time. Additionally, 4ply mat board is a considerably less burly than aluminum when you are faced with the task of clamping old curly film. If you wish to make them yourself and cannot cut aluminum sheet you might try a stiff plastic as a compromise. I have seen examples cut from thin black plastic that worked well. If the material is thicker than about 1.5 mm you probably want to bevel the edge of the opening you cut to minimize anomalies at the edge of the image. (can't hurt at any thickness) The biggest chore is not cutting the opening but rather duplicating the register system (the nubbins on the bottom that make sure the carrier/image is centered). Taping the film to the carrier eliminates the need for building film guide into your carrier design.
    Best.

    Celac
     
  4. Konical

    Konical Subscriber

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    Good Evening, Rachelle,

    I regard mat board as a good, quick expedient. As I have mentioned in other threads, however, my first preference would be something a bit more substantial, such as 1/8" tempered Masonite. The aluminum mentioned above is a great choice, but Masonite can be handled with the simple woodworking tools most people have. Used Beseler carriers are also easily available on E-Bay at bargain prices.

    Konical
     
  5. boyooso

    boyooso Member

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    3/16 gator works! I printed cibachrome commercially for years using carriers made of 3/16 gator board. 2 layers, The bottom layer is essentially a window (4x5 inches or so). The outer layer is another window that is taped to the first, and it contains the glass, holds it in place and such. Be sure to tape off all the edges so you don't get a bunch of gator bits in your glass sandwich.

    Good luck,

    Corey
     
  6. Chazzy

    Chazzy Member

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    Beseler negative carriers go so cheaply on eBay that I would never consider trying to make one. The exception is the 4x5 glass carrier with anti-newton glass.
     
  7. Jim Fitzgerald

    Jim Fitzgerald Member

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    I have a 645 and a 6x9 Negative carrier for the Beseler 45 if you need them. Just let me know.

    Jim
     
  8. Whiteymorange

    Whiteymorange Member

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    Buy 1 of these and make masks for every other negative size. I do it for 9x12, 6x12, etc. Works fine.
     
  9. Chazzy

    Chazzy Member

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    What did you make the masks out of and how did you make them? An Exacto knife and black construction paper, or did you think of something better?
     
  10. TheDreadPirateRobins

    TheDreadPirateRobins Member

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    I have a 4x5 Beseler enlarger negative carrier for which the previous user had made a few smaller masks by cutting the new size out of a couple of piece of black mat board. I haven't tried to use any of these, yet.
     
  11. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    I have made a mask to use in a 4x5 carrier by cutting the right size hole in a 4x5 sheet of film and then taping the negative down with tape.

    You can make a hinged negative holder with two pieces of black matting and a piece of tape, but you always have to be careful to get it put in the right place over the lens.

    You could also tape the film down to a piece of glass and mask it off and slide it in there. But again you have to be careful about alignment.

    Best just to buy the Beseler ones.
     
  12. mooseontheloose

    mooseontheloose Subscriber

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    Thanks everyone for the advice. I'll try to pick up carriers where I can and make the others as I need them.

    Cheers.
     
  13. NormanV

    NormanV Member

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    I think that this is a lot of fuss about nothing. Just cut yourself some carriers out of a piece of thick card and paint the edges with black ink. Then you will be able to get on with making some prints. Too many people are being to fussy about details that make a miniscule difference!