Thinking on getting a durst 1200

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by aca91, Jan 21, 2014.

  1. aca91

    aca91 Member

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    Hello Apug,

    I've been offered a Durst Laborator 1200 with several Componon-S's for a bargain, but the enlarger is missing its power supply and some of the negative carriers are slightly broken (and probably some of the gears are a bit worn out, but overall the enlarger seems ok, without any visible damage). It is being offered to me by my regular provider, and in my city there are just a few others: I don't think he is trying to rip me off, so I trust what he says about it. I have an Omega D5, which has been used over the years and is working despite some visible wear. He is offering me to trade the enlargers, because although the Durst is more sophisticated, my Omega is working and needs no extra pieces, which are usually hard to find. What should I do? I'm very tempted, do you think that I could get a power supply (even a generic one if the originals are too expensive or rare) and get that beauty working again?

    Thanks for your help.
     
  2. momus

    momus Member

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    And your "regular provider" regularly provides you with???

    Anyway, I'm sure you can find parts if you're serious about getting it going.
     
  3. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    In Europe the Durst may be easy to maintain, but in the USA the Omega is easier to maintain.
     
  4. aca91

    aca91 Member

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    By provider I meant the store in which I get paper, chemicals, film, filters... It's very small, so it is also like a gathering point for photographers that still use film for conviction in my city. Anyway, I know that Durst is easier to keep in Europe, but for me it really doesn't matter all that much since I'm in South America and both brands are equally hard to get :sad: Any ideas on what to do? I've been looking in ebay and the power supplies from Durst seem to be hard to get, so I think a generic one would be ok (I'm also on a low budget), but I would like to know what kind should I get, and how does a timer work in that case. Thanks.
     
  5. davidmasek

    davidmasek Member

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    Power supplies are heavy and expensive to ship anyway. The power supply feeds the halogen bulb and a cooling fan and as long as you get the voltage and wattage right it should work. Some old broken slide projector might be a source for parts.
     
  6. paul_c5x4

    paul_c5x4 Subscriber

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    What usually happens with the neg carriers is the hinge pins break - These are (I think) made of plastic, but are easily replaced. I have two of them, both sets had broken hinges. Drilled out the remains of the pins and replaced them with M3x0.5 set screws.

    I have a spare TR450 power supply, but shipping to anywhere is going to be very expensive - It is possible to use another 24V 250W power supply, but it is not a straight forward drop-in replacement. I have a circuit diagram for the PSU which I can send over. It will give you some idea of what is involved.
     
  7. ath

    ath Member

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    I don't know the Omega but if you have a working enlarger and don't feel a limitation I wouldn't change.
    The L1200 is a very nice enlarger (I have one) but this sounds like a project, not a simple exchange.
     
  8. vysk

    vysk Member

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    Been there. I have a beautiful working L1200, but for a month, the seller "couldn't find the power supply". I searched the earth for one. But he finally found it.

    So, finding the power supply is a pain; rare, but not really that expensive

    ebay can be a source for parts, but, rare. there is a regular ebay seller of Durst stuff,

    These guys sell new parts, but very expensive: http://www.durst-pro-usa.com/

    But once you got it working, it is a wonderful enlarger, so easy to use.
     
  9. fotch

    fotch Member

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    A bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush. A working enlarger....... Keep the one that is working.
     
  10. aca91

    aca91 Member

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    I have another enlarger, a Meopta, which I use for wall projections. This means that I can risk to get involved in the project. Paul, thank you very much, I would appreciate that diagram. How much do you think a shipment of your spare transformer would cost, and how much would you charge for it? What is the problem with using another 250w 24v power supply? How could I plug a timer to any power supply other than the ones from durst? Thank you all for your answers, I still have to think if I'm up for the risk.
     
  11. aca91

    aca91 Member

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    Ps. I have many 16mm projectors, one of which is broken. However, its internal power supply is working, and it lights a 250w 24v bulb, i think it could be like the one i'm looking for. Any idea? I'm completely ignorant in these things.
     
  12. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Yes I agree, as well there is nothing wrong with an Omega .
    QUOTE=fotch;1599704]A bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush. A working enlarger....... Keep the one that is working.[/QUOTE]
     
  13. nsurit

    nsurit Subscriber

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    I would be more inclined to buy the Durst as a project (for cheap price) and then when and if you get it working make a decision about which enlarger to keep. You will like the Durst when it is up and running, however you will hate it when you want to print and you no longer have a working enlarger. The shop owner would rather have some cash than what amounts to a pile of junk at this point. Given the condition I wouldn't think more than $100 to $150 would be what I might pay for it. If you can't get it working, what could you part it out for?
     
  14. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    Durst items get pretty expensive and many times certain items are hard to find. But the laborator 1200 is a popular model so it shouldn't be that hard. I have a durst pro 4x5 which was an off shoot of the ce1000. The durst pro i have was only produced for 3 or so years according to durst vs the 10 for the ce1000 so it's pretty tricky to find any info or parts for me. Just finding the correct negative carriers took me forever. Plus the naming scheme is pretty confusing.
     
  15. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    the Durst L1200 was the best enlarger I've ever owned and I would go for the tradebut, I'm not sure if a generic poer supply would work.the original power supply,I had,integrated a voltage stabilizer.
    good luck with your search and enjoy the beast!
    :smile:
     
  16. paul_c5x4

    paul_c5x4 Subscriber

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    Need an email address to send the info to.

    Shipping the transformer from the UK is not really viable - It is really heavy.

    The TRA-450 contains a relay to switch the 24V supply on and off (some versions used a triac) - The relay is powered by the timer, so is quite simple in operation.
    If you are good with electronics, I'd perhaps suggest building a stabilised DC power supply and use a MOSFET or IGBT to turn the lamp on/off. Use the open source f-stop timer http://www.apug.org/forums/forum43/95266-open-source-f-stop-enlarger-timer-released.html to drive the MOSFET/IGBT and you'd have a very useful setup.

    If you don't know one end of a soldering iron from the other, then all of the above will (probably) be gibberish to you..
     
  17. Ghostman

    Ghostman Subscriber

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    I have a Durst 1200 with Ilford Multigrade 500 head and control panel. I love it and considered buying a spare for parts. It's a real workhorse, panzer tank of an enlarger.
     
  18. ac12

    ac12 Member

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    I would NOT trade.

    The seller is sticking you.
    He gets rid of an enlarger that needs a lot of work to get running and is thus hard to sell, in exchange for an enlarger that is in operating condition and thus much easier to sell.
    And YOU have to spend time and money to get the Durst into operating condition.
    He wins, you loose.

    I have a Durst L1000. Replacing the missing parts was time consuming and EXPENSIVE. And I have the condenser enlarger, so I don't have to deal with the missing power supply that you have to deal with.

    As was mentioned, if you want the Durst, buy it at a very LOW price, because of the work and money you will have to put into it.
    You can argue that just replacing the missing power supply will cost a lot of money, which the seller probably already knows.
    If you cannot repair the broken parts, you will have to replace them, difficult to find and EXPENSIVE. In your case, shipping will be a major expense.
    I can see the rebuild easily taking a year to do, and cost $500 USD or more.
     
  19. ac12

    ac12 Member

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    Based on what you just said, I would NOT try to make a power supply.
    Mains electricity can be VERY DANGEROUS, if you do not know what you are doing.
    Heck it is DANGEROUS when you do know what you are doing.
    And that power supply will be putting out 10 amps of current!

    Sorry, but for your safety, my recommendation is for you to NOT make a power supply.
    Therefore you have to buy one and have it shipped to you.
     
  20. aca91

    aca91 Member

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    Thank you all for your answers. ac12, it's not like that, he is offering me to save it until we get it running and then i would give him my Omega, not before (but I should get the missing parts by myself). Thank you for the advice on the power supply. Do you know of any seller other than pro durst usa or ebay?
     
  21. ac12

    ac12 Member

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    I still think you are getting the short end of the deal.
    - Just what functionality do you get from the Durst that you do not already have with your D5?
    - Your Omega can go up to 4x5 film, same as the L1200. So there is no gain on the film format.
    - Is the chassis of the D5 the long column XL or the standard column? If you have the XL, I am pretty sure that the XL is longer/taller than the L1200.
    - Durst specific parts will be hard to find and EXPENSIVE when you do find them.

    Did you make a list of everything that you will need to repair/replace or get to bring the L1200 up to operational condition?
    - FEMONEG or BIMANEG universal negative carrier ($105 + shipping)
    - FEMOMASK or BINEMA negative masks for each film format, to go into the carrier ($50-100 each)
    - LAPLA lens boards (50mm+ lenses) ($35 + shipping for 39mm) any size other than 39mm thread will be more expensive (42,50,53mm).
    - the missing power supply
    - replacing broken parts ???

    Go onto eBay to find the parts you need and price them.
    Having been through this myself, finding some of these parts will take a LONG time.
    Example the negative masks for the L1000 so rarely come up that I will have to have them fabricated from Omega D5 negative carriers.
    I do not know if the negative carrier for the L1200 can use a modified D5 negative carrier as a mask. If not, you are stuck with the harder to find Durst negative masks.
    My seat of the pants estimate of the power supply and the negative carrier+masks+lens boards for 3 film formats (w/o knowing what parts you really need) is around $900. The cost of the power supply and shipping for all the parts was a wild guess.
    And if you need repair parts... The only way to get some of those parts is from people dismantling L1200s and selling the parts.
    You know what parts you will need, and what shipping to you might be, so you can do a better cost estimate than me.

    From a purely financial point of view, based on my rough cost estimate, it looks like a bad deal for little or no increase in functionality over your D5.
    Is it worth it for other reasons? Only you can make that decision.

    What is his straight purchase price, no trade?
    Because, it seems that you are buying an enlarger that needs a lot of work for more money that it is worth, and you still have to put in a lot of money to get it operational.
    You could come out ahead by buying the L1200 for $100, and selling your D5 for $400 or whatever you could get for it. And the D5 should sell for more than the L1200 in the condition it is in.

    gud luk in your decision
    and more gud luk in restoring the L1200 if you get it.
     
  22. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Heck, if you want a Durst, get a REAL Durst, like a 138. There are lots of parts floating around for those things because they were made over
    such a long time and used in so many labs, and way better built than an L1200. I wouldn't turn down one of those either, if it was reasonably
    complete. But there are lots of bargains out there right now, and I've seen some really expensive working units going for downright free, for anyone willing to pick them up themselves. You can't go wrong with a basic 4x5 Chromega either. These seem to last forever too, but aren't
    anywhere near as fancy as Durst.
     
  23. willem

    willem Member

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    If Paul is still willing to send the spare power supply he owns, I would consider shipping even if it is from UK. When shipping up to 20 kg worldwide from the Netherlands, I pay approximately 40 euro (55 dollar). The negative carrier is easily fixed as described several posts above, and is more sophisticated than the Omega carrier. The negative masks for the Durst appear regularly on ebay in different sizes. You might pay some extra, but the Durst L1200 makes enlarging a lot more comfortable.

    best,

    Willem