Moving a De vere 504 Floor Enlarger

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by gbenaim, Nov 3, 2006.

  1. gbenaim

    gbenaim Member

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    Hi All,

    Well, I found a local college geting rid of their darkroom, and they have a free standing De Vere 4x5 enlarger. I may not get a chance to see it before I pick it up, and was hoping someone here can tell me what its dimensions are (to see how big a car I need) and how to best take it apart. Thanks a lot,

    GB
     
  2. ben-s

    ben-s Member

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    Just done a quick search and found these:
    how to move it (disassembly instructions): http://www.photo.net/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg?msg_id=00BNog

    It's column is apparrently around the 85 inch mark, give or take a bit for the leveling screws.
    As regards the rest of the dimensions... maybe somone on here who owns one can jump in?
     
  3. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    When I got mine I used my brother's Toyota Hi-Ace van. It pretty much filled the room from the rear of the front seats to near the rear door.

    Whatever you do be careful of the head, it comes off very easily and is only held in place basically by a spring loaded clip. You'll see.

    You can lift it with two people, but it isn't easy to do. If you have to use stairs then you need a trolly, one with a triangle of wheels for stairs is best,

    Basically it's quite heavy and awkward!

    Mick.
     
  4. CGross

    CGross Guest

    I'll look at my manual tonight and get the dimensions. There are 2 knobs on either side of the column. The lock the neg and head. You will want to make darn sure they are tight. I would also lower the head down as low as possible.

    It will fit in a Minivan such as a Dodge Caravan, etc with all the seats out, but barely. If you don't have to take it apart then don't. There are some very specific steps to take if you have to.
    The link ben-s sent is very accurate, but is easier to understand if you have the manual and you are standing in front of the 504.

    Good luck. You are getting one of the best enlargers around.
     
  5. Mark Pope

    Mark Pope Member

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    I can second this. When I got my 504, I didn't tighten the locking screws. Consequently, when I removed the light source, the negative stage flew up and hit me in the face. I was lucky not to lose an eye, as the edge of the carrier just missed my glasses. I was left with a black eye though.

    Definitely. I love mine now I'm getting used to the sheer size of the thing.
    Enjoy"
     
  6. Peter De Smidt

    Peter De Smidt Member

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    Ok, I have one of these. You can remove the baseboard and separate the stand part from the enlarger part, if you have to. (Basically, this is a bench enlarger mounted to a special stand.) It's a fine enlarger. If it is color, the dichroic filters have probably faded, especially the magenta. De Vere for some reason put the color filters between the lamps and the heat reflecting glass.
     
  7. gbenaim

    gbenaim Member

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    Peter,

    Can it be used as a bench enlarger, without the base? How do you separate the base?
     
  8. Peter De Smidt

    Peter De Smidt Member

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    I bought my De-Vere almost 7 or 8 years ago, and that's the last time I moved it. I expect that it could be bench or wall-mounted, but there might be special equipment needed to do so. How hard this would be, I don't know off-hand. A De Vere manual, which are still available, would tell you more. Mine is awol, or I'd look it up. You could give Odyssey Sales or KBH Photographic a call, and they might be able to help out.
     
  9. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Many colleges have much older De Vere's and the original frames didn't all split, however the current frames do.

    Two precautions first make sure that the head is at the top of the column, and remove the light source'colour head. The reason - once the frame is split the mechanism counter balancing the head is unlocked and the head will move rapidly up the column.

    The Two bolts at the back behind the focus and head height locks must be tightened up fully these lock the gear mechanism in place. If you fail to do this getting the chains back in place is awkward and also messy as they are usually greased.

    I have a manual for my 10"x8" DeVere and can scan the relevant section if you want - the frames are essentially the same. I will admit to making both these mistakes it's easy to do.

    The bench models need a different frame which hlds the base-board. One word of warning the modern floor standind De Vere's are tall !

    Ian
     
  10. leeturner

    leeturner Subscriber

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    I moved a floor standing 504 in one piece. Two people can carry it quite easily and we managed to get it up two flights of narrow stairs! The only thing I had to do was take the baseboard frame off and that's when the chains became unthreaded. As Ian mentioned it's both a tricky and messy job to get them back on as they certainly didn't scrimp with the amount of grease.
     
  11. gbenaim

    gbenaim Member

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    Hi Ian,

    Yes, if it's not too much trouble, I'm sure a diagram or two would help. How do you get them through door frames without takig off the baseboard? Height isn't a problem for me, more so the size of the baseboard. Anyway, gift horse and all, no complaining on my part.
     
  12. Peter De Smidt

    Peter De Smidt Member

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    Definitely remove the baseboard. Just a minute...Ok, taking the baseboard off is easy. There are 4 bolts that run from it down through the support arms. Take off the nuts, and it'll lift right up. Just look under the baseboard, and you'll see the appropriate nuts.
     
  13. leeturner

    leeturner Subscriber

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    There is an optional frame that replaces the baseboard frame and converts the free standing version into a desktop version. Saw one on ebay go for £20:mad:

    I had to remove both the baseboard and frame. When the frame is removed the chain rods are unsupported and that's when the chains come off the cogs.
     
  14. gbenaim

    gbenaim Member

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    I talked to the guy and it has the 32x42in baseboard, which is quite cramped for me. Am I right in thinking that I can use a smaller board?
     
  15. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    You could easily make a smaller board, but the wheels for focussing etc and the rod for releasing the frame will protude. Easy to reduce the width but less so the depth.

    Instructions for assembly/dis-assembly will be sent by email later after I've scanned them. I'll include how to replace a chain :smile:

    Ian
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 5, 2006
  16. Peter De Smidt

    Peter De Smidt Member

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    You really don't want to mess (literally) with the chains if you can help it. Ian is right, making the baseboard narrower would be a no brainer, but making it less deep would involve difficulties. Cutting the focusing and head raising rods shorter wouldn't be that hard, but I"m not sure how much depth you'd save without going downstairs. (Yes, I'm feeling lazy.) If you didn't care about the abitlity to raise and lower the baseboad. You could remove much of the undercarriage and use a modified table as the baseboard. I'd recomend making it three-legged with threaded feet for adjustment.
     
  17. gbenaim

    gbenaim Member

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    Well, tomorrow'ss the big day. Is there any reason not to leave the color head on the enlarger when moving it? I figured I'd just remove the baseboard, leave everything else as is. I'm moving it in a moving truck, so space isn't an issue. Thanks for all the help so far.
     
  18. Peter De Smidt

    Peter De Smidt Member

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    I would remove it, as you don't want to smack it when moving the chassis. It's easy to remove. Make sure to have the carriage travel locking knows tightened though.
     
  19. gbenaim

    gbenaim Member

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    So, oter than the head and baseboard, what else wouldyou remove?
     
  20. CGross

    CGross Guest

    I just wrapped up shipping a 504 from Texas to Cincinnati. I had to fully dissassemble it so it would fit into boxes small enough to go Fed Ex ground. I am putting together a pictorial and steps on the dissassembly process and the reassembly process. I'll post when that is complete, probably in a couple weeks. Let me know if anyone needs a copy when I am done.

    I even took off the neg/lens stage adjusting wheels and the baseboard table assy. It actually wasn't that bad. I shipped the unit in 7 boxes with lots of bubble wrap and it all arrived safe and sound!!!!