nothing seen in grain focuser

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by Christopher Walrath, Apr 30, 2009.

  1. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    2500 or so posts and I'm just getting around to printing. Ok. Played hookie today. Mixed chems. Set up enlarger et al. Selected neg. Turned out lights. Turned on enlarger. Look in focuser. I see nothing. What am I doing wrong?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2009
  2. Thomas Wilson

    Thomas Wilson Member

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    After 2,500 posts, you know the drill. More information please!
     
  3. Jon Shiu

    Jon Shiu Subscriber

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    sometimes there is a cover over the mirror that needs removing.

    Jon
     
  4. johnnywalker

    johnnywalker Subscriber

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    Not even light? Is there a cover over the mirror that has to be flipped back? Did you roughly focus with your eye first?
     
  5. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Ok. Focus by eye first. When I look into grain focuser there is light and I see the focus bar (?) But nothing of the projected neg to focus on.
     
  6. David William White

    David William White Member

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    possibles:

    a) need to adjust eyepiece so line is crisp
    2) needs to be near the middle of the print area
    c) depends upon magnification & size of negative -- 35mm enlarged to 8x10, as you adjust focus, grain SUDDENLY pops into view like a slap in the face. From 4x5 not so much.
     
  7. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Then I will get to fiddling with the focus til I get it. Thanks, all.
     
  8. cowanw

    cowanw Member

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    Try to place your finder along an edge of light /dark in the image to give you a contrast to help assess what's going on. Also you may have to make sure your eye is aligned correctly.
     
  9. Bob-D659

    Bob-D659 Member

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    If you have a Paterson, focus the eyepiece on the double line with the image well out of focus. The eye's accommodation can show both the image and the line in focus if you aren't careful.
     
  10. Ian Cooper

    Ian Cooper Member

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    If you're using a slow 50asa film and not enlarging it much, then actually seeing the grain can be difficult. In these circumstances look for high contrast detail in the image itself, dark lines on pale backgrounds etc. and focus on them instead.
     
  11. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    make sure your lens is wide open too.
     
  12. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Well, I opened up to 2.8. Focused by eye. Messed with the GF for a good ten min. Decided tp practice that later. I know focus is not spot on,but good enough for a test and two prints so far. More news as events warrant.
     
  13. tim_walls

    tim_walls Member

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    Best of luck! I struggled with the grain focuser the first few times too - the one tip I'd give is that it really does need to be directly below the lens, not off to either side, to work best. Don't worry if that's not a high contrast area of the picture - it's not the picture you're trying to focus on after all, it's the silver grains.
     
  14. Bob F.

    Bob F. Member

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    Just to reiterate, the focus does snap very rapidly in/out of focus so go slowly or you will miss it. The aforementioned idea of putting the mirror of the finder over a high contrast edge (which, annoyingly, must also be close to the centre) helps you to not over-shoot the focus. Slow film and a low enlargement factor can make for very fine grain which is even easier to miss.

    If you see an elliptical view through the eyepiece then you are too far away from the centre and need to move the finder more directly under the lens.

    Good hunting!
     
  15. sidearm613

    sidearm613 Member

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    One things I did when I first started printing was to get the focus as close as possible to properly focused as possible. that way, when I look in the grain focuser, I dont have to search really far for the focus. And always remember to place the focuser near a centered place with high contrast, because it makes life easier.
     
  16. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    I don't believe I had it centered under the lens due to comfort and space constraints. I'll try that next time. But I did print my fool, happy buttocks off. Five hours.