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  1. #1

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    JAPAN: Illegalization of Old Electronics (that includes your favorite enlargers!)

    I don't know how many APUGers in Japan are actually currently using or thinking of building darkrooms in the near future, but here's something they need to know.

    http://mdn.mainichi-msn.co.jp/nation...na020000c.html

    In Japan, from the next month, there's a new law to be validated to ban the sales and resales of all the old electronical equipment (with a few exceptions such as used computers) that is older than 5-10 years old.

    And without obtaining new PSE-safe stickers by going through inspections at their own cost, the sellers will be penalized and fined as much as a million yen if they regualrly do businesses with their customers.

    Although this law doesn't apply to the activities by non-professionals like many of us doing online auctions, it will perhaps affect and lower the volume of the old equipment in the used market significantly because basically the professionals are being forced to leave the market. That means there'll be less and less of a choice for the people to have with very little professional assistance and/or care.

    If you read Japanese, the address below explains more in details:

    http://antipse.org/index.html

    Anyway I honestly didn't know about this law when it was issued 5 years ago because I was living abroad at that time. But I started to notice it when I was shopping around some used and new darkroom equipment domestically.

    It's too bad there's not been any discussion about it anywhere on the internet until very recently. The Japanese media sucks as always. And thanks to the foreign correspondents who are doing far less-significant stories on Japan for BBC and NYT and completely ignoring this on a regular basis. This is serious.

    While some musicians, both pros and amateurs, are doing their protest, that doesn't seem to do much justice for the people in other professions because they are trying to ease out the potential problems for only themselves. They are not totally going against the execution of this stupid law.

    So I guess we photographers have to unite and do that as well, but for the mass, for everyone. And I'm ready to rock the boat.

    Firecracker

  2. #2

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    I understand that the PSE law has its own purpose but it's a defective law with lots of holes. It is perfectly legal to sell the device without the PSE approval if you are not a for-profit business. Also, even if you are a for-profit business, it's legal to rent the device, or give away the device.

    So, is it possible for a used enlarger merchant (if such thing still exists) to remove the lightbulb, socket and the AC cable, and sell the rest, with the understanding that the AC cable, socket and the bulb will be given as a complementary service? It's also easy to replace the AC cable and the socket with the PSE approved ones and sell it, although the business will have to have an approved engineer.

    Anyway, that's a really badly implemented law.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by firecracker
    <SNIP>

    While some musicians, both pros and amateurs, are doing their protest, that doesn't seem to do much justice for the people in other professions because they are trying to ease out the potential problems for only themselves. They are not totally going against the execution of this stupid law.

    So I guess we photographers have to unite and do that as well, but for the mass, for everyone. And I'm ready to rock the boat.

    Firecracker
    I think you should look at uniting with the widest possible community. Musicians, especially guitar players, would be certainly be hit by this. Tube audio fanatics would be another group to align with. Japanese collector and homebuild hobbiests are among the worlds leading enthusiasts for ancient and esoteric audio equipment. This a much higher value market place than used darkroom equipment. I think these people would make natural allies for your cause.
    Celac.

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    It's assumed that no professional repair service will deal with your old equipment if yours doesn't have the new safety-approval sticker on it. They cannot even order replacement parts for you, and that's going to be very frustrating.

    Also, things like strobe units are likely going to be wasted if they are not treated properly with this procedure.

  5. #5

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    http://www.asahi.com/english/Herald-...602210407.html

    This is slightly a better article. It says: "Also, 112 of the 450 products, such as sockets and wire cables, require a much stricter version of the PSE safety certification that can only be given by accredited third-party safety inspectors."

    This is ridiculous. Who are the "third-party safety inspectors" other than the ones who have been in the business and able to handle the stuff? I hope to find one of them if I really need help.

    The real problem is that the sellers will have responsibilities that the manufacturers do if they want to keep selling the stuff. It's sort of like asking dental office clerks to actually fix patients' teeth.

    Anyway I'll keep posting as I find more on this.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by pelerin
    I think you should look at uniting with the widest possible community. Musicians, especially guitar players, would be certainly be hit by this. Tube audio fanatics would be another group to align with. Japanese collector and homebuild hobbiests are among the worlds leading enthusiasts for ancient and esoteric audio equipment. This a much higher value market place than used darkroom equipment. I think these people would make natural allies for your cause.
    Celac.
    True. So some vintage guitar shop owners are worried if their 5k Fender Twin Reverb amps will just sit in their stores for nothing.

    The same thing could happen to Leitz and Durst enlargers that are in that price range or higher.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryuji
    So, is it possible for a used enlarger merchant (if such thing still exists) to remove the lightbulb, socket and the AC cable, and sell the rest, with the understanding that the AC cable, socket and the bulb will be given as a complementary service? It's also easy to replace the AC cable and the socket with the PSE approved ones and sell it, although the business will have to have an approved engineer.
    I'm assuming the shop(s) in Ginza district in Tokyo will have licensed technicians to do that. I'll be damned if they will start doing the repair services, which I doubt because I heard they have stopped importing foreign enlargers a few years ago.

    The worst part is domestic-brand enlargers that are still usable can be easily ditched by the market and the manufacturers, just like how used cars have been treated in the last couple of decades.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by firecracker
    The worst part is domestic-brand enlargers that are still usable can be easily ditched by the market and the manufacturers, just like how used cars have been treated in the last couple of decades.
    At least those used cars were exported to Thailand and others for better second life... but I doubt Thailand wants many enlargers!

    I use a Durst Laborator 138, which is a quite old but very nice 5x7 enlarger. Come to think of it, the very first thing I did when I bought it was to replace the cord and the socket. (Though I always unplug the enlarger circuit at the end of each day anyway.) But you know what, I don't even know how old is the wiring in the building (my darkroom is in a very old brick-made professional building complex in Boston).

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by firecracker
    It says: "Also, 112 of the 450 products, such as sockets and wire cables, require a much stricter version of the PSE safety certification that can only be given by accredited third-party safety inspectors."
    I don't know the actual implementation of this, but I assume that they are referring to the components manufactured anew. So you'll buy PSE rated sockets and cords to make your own enlarger circuitry, and that should be ok, hopefully. If the whole cable-socket-system has to be PSE rated again, that is ridiculous, but still manageable.

    I think the real problem is Jobo processors and the like.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryuji
    I don't know the actual implementation of this, but I assume that they are referring to the components manufactured anew. So you'll buy PSE rated sockets and cords to make your own enlarger circuitry, and that should be ok, hopefully. If the whole cable-socket-system has to be PSE rated again, that is ridiculous, but still manageable.

    I think the real problem is Jobo processors and the like.
    Or even Beseler and Omega units. Forget about the color heads!

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