Not burned, just "lightly singed"...

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by Ole, Dec 20, 2006.

  1. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    All right, that's not the most descriptive thread title, I know.

    But the point is that I just bought a bunch of enlarger lenses on ebay. Nice lenses, nice price, but when they arrived I discovered the packaging had been a little less than optimal: A Componar 135/4.5 was dented (outer ring), and a Componon 135/5.6 was not only dented but had three loose aperture blades, and a "Kodak Enlarging Ektanon" 161mm f:4.5 had two small dents on opposite sides. An Elgeet Colorstigmat 135mm f:4.5 survived unscathed, as did a Componon 60mm f:5.6.

    I checked the picture in the auction closely, and it appears that all the damage has occurred in the mail. Bummer. At $50 I'm not bothering to complain, though. Especially as all the lenses except the Elgeet came with mounting flanges.

    So: Does anyone have any experience with any of these lenses? Should I expect the Componar to be much worse than the Componon, or are they just optimised for different enlarging ratios? And what about the Kodak and Elgeet - are they decent or letter presses?
     
  2. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    The Kodak is supposed to be quite nice. Top quality for it's time.

    I picked up a 135mm Componon-S last week but haven't had a chance to compare it to my Nikon. I expect it to be equal in quality but I'll need some time.

    IIRC the componar are all four element.

    But with all used lenses alot depends on condition.
     
  3. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That's the sad thing - all five lenses were[/] in pristine condition. The glass still is, not even a hint of a scratch in the coatings. But dents and dings make some of the apertures hard to operate, even if I've managed to "reattach" the loose blades.

    I believe all but the Componons are Tessar-types; the Componons are six elements in four groups.

    Oh well. I'll do a practical comparison test during the holidays, I think. If I can find a super-sharp 4x5" (or 9x12cm) negative. And a way to get the lenses to stay in place, well aligned and centered, on my Durst - without needing to scour ebay again for lens boards (I only end up with more lenses that way).
     
  4. jstraw

    jstraw Member

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    Please, for everyone's sake...leave feedback that reflects the seller's poor packing.
     
  5. Terence

    Terence Member

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    My Kodak is my oldest, but best, enlarging lens. It's slightly less contrasty than my newer ones, but like an old camera lens, makes a beautifully rounded image. Not unsharp and not out of focus, just different. Tough to describe.
     
  6. ricksplace

    ricksplace Member

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    I actually use my 161 enlarging ektanon on my speed graphic as a taking lens. Stopped down, it is surprisingly good. Maybe yours will be too. You never know until you try. I also have a 150mm f4.5 D.O. Industries (fuji) that I sometimes use as a taking lens. One of these days I'll try some of my other enarger lenses as taking lenses. I haven't had good luck with componons as taking lenses.

    Does you durst have round lensboards like a 606 I used to have? I made lensboards for that critter out of stiff cardboard.
     
  7. Parsifal

    Parsifal Member

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    The Elgeet would have been considered a semi woofer....
     
  8. Curt

    Curt Subscriber

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    Ole, where did the lenses originate? By what mail method did they use?

    Curt
     
  9. epatsellis

    epatsellis Member

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    Ole,
    packed somewhere I have a barrel for the 135, I bought one and just for kicks put it in a #0 shutter, needless to say, it never left and I have the barrel packed up, somewhere. (I'll be glad when I find a place in WI and get all my s#$% moved)

    erie
     
  10. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    The lenses were sent from the US by USPS. I'm not blaming the carrier in this case, it was clearly a case of insufficient padding.

    Enlarger lenses in metal barrels are small, compact, hard, high density items. One single layer of bubble wrap won't change that much - they're still small, hard, high density. Put five of them in a small cardboard box with a little extra space, and they will move. Being small high-density objects, they will impact each other.

    Any other time of year I might have been lucky, but anyone who has been in a major post office sorting central in December (I worked in one for five years, after school) knows that everything must be double-extra-super-padded in December!