Free Darkroom!

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by Dr Croubie, Nov 24, 2013.

  1. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    (Not offering, bragging).

    Went to see my mum yesterday, she told me that she was recently talking to a friend of hers, whose husband passed away a year or two ago. The quote was pretty much something like, "my husband loved photography, had his own darkroom and everything. I was looking for somewhere to give it away, it's just cluttering the shed right now, your son can have it if he wants".

    I have no idea what's in it (at least one enlarger, probably trays, and a bunch of chemicals that are probably expired), and I have nowhere to put it (although, I do have a ceiling-space high enough to stand in, a few sheets of black plastic might light-tight it), but I'm just so happy to get something that will enable me to wet-print (I've been scanning for a year or two and i'm already sick of it, especially the dust).
     
  2. pbromaghin

    pbromaghin Subscriber

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    Woohoo! Good score. Something similar happened to me a couple years ago. I've been using bits and pieces of it for developing film, but not printed yet. It's great that you were able to keep all that equipment alive and working, instead of rotting in a landfill.
     
  3. munz6869

    munz6869 Subscriber

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    Yay!!

    Marc!
     
  4. cjbecker

    cjbecker Member

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    Enjoy and the dust problem is just starting. HahA
     
  5. dances_w_clouds

    dances_w_clouds Subscriber

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    Kind of confusing here. Do you want affirmation on that you received is great or do you want sympathy for what was NOT included ?
     
  6. hoffy

    hoffy Member

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    Welcome to the dark side.... Dust is not a problem in Adelaide, really it isn't :wink:
     
  7. dodphotography

    dodphotography Subscriber

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    same experience here... minus the death.

    There's a community group here called FREECYCLE... basically it's people offering up things they'll likely throw away/ put on the street for trash. 80% of it is crap, but every now and then you find gems. They also allow you to place Wanteds and wouldn't you know... a guy came up with a full darkroom with 2 4x5 enlargers, trays, chemistry, etc etc etc
     
  8. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Does not matter what is there. Jump in. The water is fine. Congratulations.
     
  9. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    Good to see ya, CW! :smile: Been a while!
     
  10. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Yes it is good to be back. Don't wanna hijack this thread though. I'll start an I'm back in the intros for that. Good to be seen, though.
     
  11. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    Wow, well, this guy certainly did like his cameras, too bad I never got to meet him when he was alive.
    Went round there on Monday night to have a look, and besides all the trays and tongs and books and easels and such, the three main items were:
    -Meopta Opemus iii B+W Condenser enlarger, with holders for 6x6 (now that I've unpacked it, it seems to be missing the lamp and pole, I'll have to go back to look for it methinks)
    -LPL C6700 colour enlarger (only has holders for 135 by the looks)
    -Jobolift CPE2 and two drums, 2830 and 2840.

    By the looks of things, he loved his slides, boxes of them in her shed (which she kept of course). And a book on Cibachrome and a 'cibachrome processing drum' (looks like it takes up to 8x10 taco-style). Too bad there was no paper nor chemicals, I know there's a lot of love around here for Ciba. I'll have to see if she's got any Ciba prints I can view, I've only read about them, never seen them in person (maybe I have but didn't know it).
    The only chemical was a 2-bottle kit of 'kodak sepia toner', does anyone know if that stuff expires?
    Actually, I'm most excited by the Jobo, it can do up to 16x20", and I've always wanted to try paper pinhole negatives...
     
  12. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    Paper negs? Bugger that; with a Jobo you can print RA4 without exposing yourself to the chemicals! And you can (much more) reliably and quickly process all your film, including colour. A free Jobo is a real score, even if it's only the little one.

    Once you get to processing 6+ rolls at a time and not having to do all the agitation (especially while washing!) by hand, you will wonder how you ever lived before.
     
  13. CatLABS

    CatLABS Subscriber

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    great score!
    Forget about the meopta - the LPL 6700 is one of the better enlargers around and will be MUCH easier (and way more fun) to use then the meopta...
     
  14. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    Thanks for the encouragement guys.
    That Jobo is the 'small one'? Wow, I'd hate to see how big a 'big one' is. (OK, I saw on the catalogue one that does 20x24", which is bigger than I have).
    RA4 would be nice, for that I'd need to have a really light-tight darkroom though, not sure how this is all going to work (it's either black out the skylight and around the door in the bathroom, or build something in the roof cavity). I figured at least with B+W I can get away with a bit of starlight from the skylight if I do enlarging in the dead of night (nah, maybe I should black it out anyway).

    And one thing I've never known the answer to, can you do B+W enlargements with a colour enlarger? If I turn all the lights on so that it's shooting pure white then I suppose the contrast filters will still work the same. Oh yeah, there was also two sets of Ilfospeed Multigrade II filters, one in 9x9cm gels, one in circular holders, both 0-5 in half-steps.
    I'll only stick with the LPL if I can get it to work up to 6x6, otherwise I'll have to just use both. I'm definitely going to start on B+W, at least I remember some of that from highschool, never done a colour before...
     
  15. CatLABS

    CatLABS Subscriber

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    Printing BW with a color head can be easier then fumbling around with filters, you can make minute adjustment instead of 1/2 grade increments and you can use the yellow to cancel out the magenta for even finer adjustment. It makes split filter printing much easier, and saved a whole lot of time...
     
  16. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    You certainly can do B&W with a colour enlarger; you use the built-in colour filters to do contrast control, no need for separate gels. More magenta = higher contrast. The only drawback is that a grade change (if you move just one knob) will also change your exposure. All that can be calibrated out though with a spot of effort (an enlargement meter, f/stop timer and densitometer). I find it's easier to tweak the knobs on a colour enlarger than to swap filters without bumping anything, so a colour enlarger is actually easier for split-grade. Dichroic glass filters in colour enlargers also do not fade (they are thin metal-oxide coatings that filter using destructive interference), unlike gel multigrade filters (organic dyes in resin).

    The CPA2/CPP2 are the bigger processors, about 1m long. They can take the 3xxx Expert drums, which are especially nice for sheet film and huge prints.

    Black your skylight out and print at night, you'll be fine for colour I'm sure. Even if you don't get to RA4, you can at least do your own C41 and E6 on the cheap now and print them hybrid.

    Your LPL will do 6x7 if it's the enlarger I think it is - I used to have a C7700 which is very similar. You can get an adjustable glass universal carrier for it.

    You really need to come along to one of our AFDUG film-nerd pub-nights. There are a few of us that can demo colour printing for you.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 3, 2013
  17. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    Yep, I definitely need to get to one of those nights, I'm getting the emails but can't reply to them directly, so I'll just rock up one day whenever (doesn't look like it's happening until next year though). If it stays at a city-south pub I'd be happy, I live in Clarence Park so it's walking (just) distance (the joys of being on P Plates, can't have a beer and drive home).

    Meanwhile, I've checked the enlarger manual, and it says max size is 6x7, which is good (and also says it takes same holders as the 7700). But no film carrier that size, only 135 and slide (although the Meopta has a 135 and two 6x6, no idea why). There's some on fleabay for $100 shipped, but i'm in no hurry, I'll just wait for one to show up cheap.

    Got a roll of 135 Provia 100F back from Atkins last night, I spent the night just sliding them into the neg holder and projecting them onto the baseboard, already so much more fun than scanning (too bad I still have to scan them to make prints). Also tried out my various LTM lenses for fun, the 21/4 skopar won't focus but the 90/3.5 Apo-Lanthar looks good, I'll probably just stay with the 50/2.8 el-nikkor that was already mounted though (Until I get a 6x6 neg holder, then I may need to upsize).

    Looks like it'll be a trip past LP on the way home, time to get some B+W paper chemicals and start playing on the weekend...