need ideas about building a simple filter tray

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by David Lyga, Oct 1, 2012.

  1. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    I have a couple of simple VIvitar enlargers that I bought for next to nothing. But they do not have filter trays. The filter tray slot is about 3 inches wide and just over 1/2 inch high. The depth is about 5 inches and the front, due to the enlarger head being round, is curved.

    Do you have suggestions on what material I might use to make an endurable tray? I do not want to use heavy cardboard, even if then covered with duct tape. But I do not want to have to buy hacksaws to cut metal either. Making a simple tray should not be not rocket science. Probably a type of plastic that is both fairly rigid and also can be cut would be good. As far as for the front of the tray, I would probably use a thin metal and curve it to mesh with the enlarger head. I would then cover that part with felt to keep light out. Thank you. - David Lyga
     
  2. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    Thin aluminum can be cut with heavy scissors.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 1, 2012
  3. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    And where do I buy sheet aluminum? - David Lyga
     
  4. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Hobby shop.

    You can also look at sheet styrene (plastic) there too. Building one out of that material may be a decent option to consider.

    ... or plywood. Hobby shops generally carry 1/16 and 1/8 inch plywood that can be easily manipuated into photographic things like lensboards, filter holders, etc.
     
  5. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    Aluminum, brass sheet stock, both are good options. Another option would be some plexiglass - it is fairly easy to cut, comes in a rainbow of colors (black is very common and makes a good option) and many thicknesses, and is easy to cut and shape. You can get plexi in sheets at the hardware store, or you can order it online from specialty shops.
     
  6. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    Good suggestions. I knew that there would be people who would know this. - David Lyga
     
  7. Jeff Searust

    Jeff Searust Member

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    Go take a look at the grocery store at the pots and pans aisle--- look at cutting boards (usually good plastic that can be cut easily), or other items including cheap aluminum pans that can be cut or bent into shape.
     
  8. Alex Muir

    Alex Muir Member

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    I have a Durst M601 that came without a filter drawer. I contacted the Durst repairers in the Uk and they supplied the part. You could check out whoever dealt with Vivitar parts where you are. You might be lucky. The M601 was long out of date when I got the part I needed. The other thing to consider is simply blanking off the drawer opening and using filters below the lens. That would certainly work with the Ilford Multigrade filter set, but I don't know if it would be an option for colour.
     
  9. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    Geez David--I just got rid of an E-34 or I could have sent you pics and dimensions of the drawer.

    BTW-- theres a piece of heat absorbing glass in the drawer that the VC filters sit on.
     
  10. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    Rick A, I actually bought THREE of the Vivitar enlargers, for $10 each, and ONE has a filter drawer so I know the dimensions already. - David Lyga
     
  11. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    Maybe balsa wood from a hobby shop. Quite cheap and you can cut with a knife. Then wrap with gaffer or black tape. Or paint. You can glue balsa wood
    Very easily together too.
     
  12. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    Also I have used a moldable plastic called instamorph to create custom pieces such as camera grips. This may be a solution but it's a bit pricey for what is is. It also activates by heating it in a pot of boiling water. I am not sure if it may stand up to your enlarger lamps to long periods of time.
     
  13. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Tin snips are better.
     
  14. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Stiff Plastic Card and the adhesive to stick it together with from a hobby/model shop would be an easy way to make one, and you could paint it with acrylic paint to match the enlarger .
     
  15. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    Now that is a great idea, Ben. I do have some thick plastic card but it is transparent. That 'problem' can easily be corrected as I would have to 'opaque' only the front. I have many different glues, including Gorilla glue. - David Lyga
     
  16. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Be careful with that stuff. It was originally designed for adhering Apes together. It swells and foams and can be a mess to work with... and takes a long time to dry. Thre are much better glues to use.
     
  17. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    I think the hobbys shop plastic, whcih is white and opaque, is styrene. So a styrene glue would be best. A regular white glue might be best (or a carpenter's yellow glue) if you opt to use baltic plywood. The hobby shop can give you some good advise on which glue to use for the material you select.
     
  18. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    I think the hobbys shop plastic sheets, which are white and opaque, is styrene. There are some other transparent and colored that maya be PVC. So if using styrene a styrene glue would be best. A regular white glue might be best (or a carpenter's yellow glue) if you opt to use baltic plywood. The hobby shop can give you some good advise on which glue to use for the material you select.

    Here is an example of the plastic sheet a well-supplied hobby shop should have:
    http://www.hobbylinc.com/midwest_model_scratch_building_plastic_sheets_rods_tubes_strips
     
  19. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    The adhesive that's used for this plastic sheet Brian is a solvent cement that "welds" it together , like the adhesive that plumbers use to join plastic cold water pipes, they sell it in model shops.