Switching heads on a Beseler 45...

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Jim17x, Oct 24, 2012.

  1. Jim17x

    Jim17x Subscriber

    Jul 13, 2012
    Multi Format
    Im going to buy a Beseler 45mx II today that has a dichro 45S head and was wondering if i do buy this can i put my condenser head from my MCRX on it? I know i can print B&W with the dichro 45S but i prefer to use a condenser head.

  2. FritsM

    FritsM Member

    Oct 18, 2012
    Pasadena, MD
    Multi Format
    I'm pretty sure it will fit.
    I never really understood all the designations in the 45MX line, but from what I've seen the chassis are all the same.

    I too prefer the condensor head for B&W, except for very contrasty negs or grainy negs where I wanted to subdue the grain somewhat.
    But for proofing or non-critical B&W work, I always stuck with VC paper and dial-in contrast of the 45S. Easy peasy.

    To switch over from one to the other is a snap. Well, 2 snaps and a plug exchange.

    Notes on the 45S Dichro head:
    I had a lot of light spill from the bottom and back of the 45S head, and masked those areas off with (black) Ilford bags. The "white light lever" seal is not very light tight, and neither is the fan. Also the filter dials in the front are way too bright, just put a (black matboard) flap over it.

    Also I replaced the standard EVW bulb (250 Watt) with an ESJ (85 Watt) to reduce light output for making smaller prints with reasonable apertures and times. When needed, I would switch back to the EVW.


    Since all those heads are very heavy you'll spend a considerable amount of time to align the whole thing square. There is quite a bit of sag, because of all the weight, and that needs to be compensated.
  3. David Brown

    David Brown Member

    Feb 16, 2004
    Multi Format