Looking at an enlarger, price feedback
The last time I was in a darkroom was during high school. I'm looking to set one up in my garage.
I currently shoot 35mm, 6x4.5, 6x6 with a smattering of 6x9. I figure I'll probably give 4x5 a shot at some point and want to buy/build with that in mind as the price of enlargers is so low at this point.
I found an offer - $215 for the following:
Aristo head (they don't know anything beyond that)
Schneider Componon-S 2.8/50 lens
4x5 and 2x2.5(?) carriers
So on the positive side, the price seems decent for the body, head and random odds and ends it includes.
Down side, it doesn't have the carriers I'd need and I'd need a longer lens for medium format (odd that it has a 50mm lens and only large format carriers, but it sounds like the people purchased it for their son who never got around to using it). They've had it in storage for several years and believe it works, so I don't have much in the way of sign on on its condition.
I'd have to rent a truck to move it (I don't think it would fit in my sedan and I'm nervous about taking it apart) and put a decent chunk more into it for carrier - 35mm and 6x6 at a minimum. That would probably add another $150 to the price.
Any thoughts on the price? I've only been pricing this stuff out the last few weeks so and an still getting up to speed.
Thank you in advance for any feedback, I really appreciate it.
Edit: I should note that I'm not in a rush on a purchase. I'm fine waiting for a good deal. 4x5 enlargers don't seem as plentiful around here though with the exception of older D2s.
Last edited by Brian Legge; 11-22-2010 at 01:26 AM. Click to view previous post history.
Thats a tough call to make, have you tried talking the seller down in price? On the plus side, you can mask the 6x7(2x2.5)carriers for both your formats for free, and only need a 35mm carrier. You know, everone will start to chime in about getting theirs for free or little to nothing. Your best bet is to try talking the seller down on price. BTW, it shouldn't be too hard to disassemble the beast for loading into the back of a sedan, maybe only remove the base from the column. I stood a Beseler 23cII up in the back of my wifes Expedition, the 45mx is slightly larger.
If the enlarger is in good condition, the price is reasonable. Carriers are not that expensive, maybe 10 or 15 each tops, and 30 give or take for an 80 mm lens.
Don't disassemble any more than you need to fit it into the car. Most likely if you just take off the base board you'll be all set.
For serious enlarger rescue, you need at least a hatchback
remove the head which is easier and it reduces the height by a huge degree. But the cold light head is not large to begin with
You can make negative carriers from mat board, and lens aren't that expensive these days.
Price vs availability. I have purchased them locally for a lot less but if they are rare where your at, then its not a bad price. New, the enlarger is about $2,000.
The carriers use can be had for $10 to $20 plus shipping. An older but excellent lens, maybe $20.
Can you get it in my removing the baseboard? In either case, take the head off, its easy, requires no tools.
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Thank you for the feedback all. I'll talk with the seller and see what they say.
The other bit that I didn't think through; I assume Aristo means means cold head and dealing with bulb availability issues? I saw a thread on the recent bulb run - how much should I expect to pay for a bulb (assuming I can find them)?
You also have the option of finding a color head which works for color or VC B&W or graded B&W
I got my 45MX in my Mustang by just taking off the base, IIRC. If you're sorta patient, you should be able to find the other carriers and lenses you need for reasonable prices as well. You can also mask down the 4x5 carrier to hold the smaller formats, so that's not as hard as needing a lens.
i concur about price (fair) and removing base to transport
re. light head... probably a cold light head - i ordered a bulb from a firm in NY/CT or MA (i could find name if need be) for my zone vi cold light head. they manufactured it easily - cost me less than $150 delivered.
Check Craigslist every day. I found a Beseler 45 MCRX in excellent condition with Schneider 50mm, 80mm and 150mm lenses and carriers for 35mm, medium and 4x5 for $50.