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  1. #1
    stradibarrius's Avatar
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    is your safe light on or off while the enlarger is on?

    I have always plugged my safe light into my timer so it went off when the enlarger came on. But in a darkroom class I took last year the safe light stayed on all the time. It didn't seem to fog the paper or cause any trouble. I am working on a new darkroom and doing my planning of where everything should be placed and how to wire the room.
    "Generalizations are made because they are generally true"
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  2. #2
    David Brown's Avatar
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    Some find it easier to focus with the safelight off. Especially if the safelight is very bright. Most timers have that feature, but it's not mandatory.

    Also, in a multi-user darkroom, such as found in a school, it's impractical.

  3. #3
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    Mine stays on but it is very dim and a decent distance from any paper.

  4. #4

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    Just on a point of information some timers do not work properly with the safelight on. RH Designs Analyser Pro is such a machine but the safelight "cut out" is part of the kit so no problem.

    My Phillips one is fine with the safelight on but needs to be calibrated that way and if I were to move to a cut-out system I'd have to re-calibrate it. I only discovered this by accident when just for fun I switched off the safelight while leaving the probe on the same spot on the neg. The exposure changed immediately and by enough to make a difference

    Until then I had assumed that the safelight made little or no difference to the enlarge meter

    pentaxuser

  5. #5

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    No "safelight" is completely safe. So to reduce the cumulative light exposure it should be off during focusing and exposure.
    A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.

    ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery

  6. #6

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    The photo sensor in the metering is likely human vision range and the paper is sensitive to mostly green and blue. Any out of paper sensitivity band light falling on the sensor would appear in your reading if within the sensor bandwidth and above its minimum threshold. Since the safe light 'lux' would be constant it is likely a slight offset to the actual light through the enlarger contribution. It would hide from you until you made a safe light off reading. Either light on or light off numbers work on their own. It is so much apart of life that the full environment is active in what we do. And much of it hides in the circumstances quite well.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerald C Koch View Post
    No "safelight" is completely safe. So to reduce the cumulative light exposure it should be off during focusing and exposure.
    How does leaving the light on when focusing increase the cumulative light exposure? The paper should be in a light tight box until ready to expose, i.e. after focusing.

  8. #8
    Bill Burk's Avatar
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    gleaf raises a valid point, if you use an enlarging meter you can throw it off.

    I personally took the safelight off the timer after several near misses where I was using the timer (a GraLab 300) to time development, and being horrified that the safelight came on when the time was up. I was developing sheet film in trays!

    I had to rearrange things to open up an electrical outlet in the wall for it. So sometimes the "safelight" socket of a timer is the most convenient outlet.

  9. #9

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    My safelight stays on.

    Jeff

  10. #10
    cliveh's Avatar
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    is your safe light on or off while the enlarger is on?

    On, why shouldn't it be? My safe light is quite dim and therefore hardly effects viewing when viewing the enlarger projection.

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

    Francis Bacon

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