Durst 138 condensers when printing 4x5?

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by haziz, Sep 1, 2006.

  1. haziz

    haziz Subscriber

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    I have a Durst 138 enlarger (original version not the later 138S but I don't think that should matter much). My condensers (Latico) include 2x240, 180, a chipped/cracked 160, 130 and 85. I also have the original cold light head.

    With condensers the illustration for printing 4x5 using a 150 mm lens shows the 240 on top with the 160 in the bottom slot. Since my 160 is chipped/cracked to one side (probably mostly outside the image area) I tried to avoid using it. Instead using the enlarger with the two 240 condensers (the 210-240 mm lens configuration). That however has tended to produce long exposure times (50 seconds to several minutes at f8). I am using graded paper (Oriental Seagull G2-4 and Nuance expo G2-3).

    So what should I do?

    1. Continue to use two 240 condensers in both top and bottom slots with the 150 mm lens. Which is what I did the whole weekend despite the long exposure times. The prints as expected are tack sharp.

    2. Use the two 240 condensers with my EL Nikkor 210 (non-Apo) lens. The 150 is giving me good coverage. I am not sure if the 210 would give me an advantage?

    3. Use the 160 in the bottom slot (with the 240 in the top slot) with the 150 mm lens as per instruction book illustration. The chip/crack will likely not intrude on the image?

    4. Use the 240 in the top with the 180 in the bottom slot with the 150 mm lens. A configuration not illustrated in the instructions for any lens, the 180 seems intended as the top condenser (flipped the other way around) for shorter lenses. I seem able to focus fine with this configuration and light coverage appears grossly OK by visual inspection but I have not printed with this configuration.

    5. Use the cold light head? I am using graded paper anyway. The exposure times with the cold light however were also fairly long.

    Thanks.

    Sincerely,

    Hany.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 1, 2006
  2. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    The proper condensers for 4X5 with this enlarger and a 150 mm lens are the 240 and the 200. This will give you1.0 to 8.6X enlarging capability. The double 240 combinations that you are using will give you .4 to 1.0X enlarging with a 150 mm lens according to the Durst manual for that enlarger.

    With a 210 mm lens and the double 240 condensers, you will have 1.2 to 5.3X enlarging capability. That is unless you have a 240 R condenser as one of the condensers. That changes things. A 240 T is another possible condenser as is a 240 H...these all do different things. There are also the PT and the HR condensers that were made for this enlarger too.

    Durst has condensers for specific enlarging lenses. Componon and Rodagon lenses use different condensers in certain configurations.

    The 240 mm lens does not improve things for you.

    I designed a 1000 watt point light source for my 138S ...it kicks ass as far as exposure times.
     
  3. haziz

    haziz Subscriber

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    According to the photocopied 138S manual I got from Glennview (I asked him for the earliest one he had since I wanted the closest match to my enlarger) the configuration for a 150 mm lens is Latico 240 on top and the 160 in the bottom slot. The 240 on top and 200 in the bottom slot is one of the recommended setups for a 180 mm lens. I also don't have a Latico 200. The longer lens I have is the EL Nikkor 210 which I intend to use for enlarging 5x7. So far I had only been contact printing 5x7.

    This is my first use of the 138. Up till now I have been using a Saunders LPL 4500 which I still have. The 150 mm lens I am using is a fairly modern Componon S, but I also have a Rodagon 150 and a diff design (looks also modern) Componon S with a smaller sized barrel but with a slightly flared filter ring. I also have an EL Nikkor 135 mm.

    Can you provide more info regarding your design for a point light source?

    Thanks.

    Sincerely,

    Hany.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 1, 2006
  4. lee

    lee Member

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    I concur with Donald and answered your question on the largeformat forum also with the same info. 240x240 for 5x7 is what is recommended also. Try it with 4x5 and the 240 top and the bottom 180. I dont know the enlargment ratios but it should cover.

    lee\c
     
  5. Clueless

    Clueless Member

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    Would the original poster indicate exactly which lamp his is using? What is the typical size print is being made for the exposure times? Is the negative being held between metal or glass inserts?
     
  6. haziz

    haziz Subscriber

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    I believe (but cannot confirm) that the lamp is the original opal lamp supplied by Durst (I am not sure if it is the 200W, 300W or stronger version). These appear now to be rarer than hen's teeth and fetch outlandish figures when they appear on ebay or through resellers. I picked up the enlarger from the studio of a local pro photographer who is semi-retiring. He used exclusively the cold light head on the 138 (and later on a Zone VI enlarger) and therefore this bulb is probably at least 20-25 years old, possibly older. I did order as a precaution the recommended modern replacement GE bulb and may try it out when I go back into the darkroom.

    I am enlarging 4x5 negs to 11x14, most are printed close to full frame. I am sandwiching the 4x5 negs in glass (top is AN glass) in the 5x7 Nega carrier. I do use the masking blades of the 138 enlarger without impinging on the 4x5 negative. Most of the prints were made using f8 though some were at f11.

    Sincerely,

    Hany.