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Thread: Enlarger Bulb

  1. #1
    Pfiltz's Avatar
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    Enlarger Bulb

    Does the type of bulb you use in enlargers influence the print with regard to quality.

    I understand the stronger the intensity of a bulb, will effect how you use the lens, to stop down or open up to get the proper exposure, but what about quality. Right now I have your everyday plain Jane 40 watt household light in my Beseler.
    Go to the light......

    www.keepsakephotography.us

  2. #2
    AgX
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    A plain household lamp is less effective concerning the effective light output, but this would not affect quality.

    Of much importance is however the size of a lamp and the transmittance quality of the bulb proper (clear or opal), actually the latter is finally a matter of size too... At least any enlarger that employs a condenser should be fitted with a lamp of proper physical size.

    In the latter case the position of the lamp is of importance too.
    Last edited by AgX; 01-07-2013 at 06:55 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: typo

  3. #3
    Pfiltz's Avatar
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    Thanks AgX....

    Well, I pretty much don't have any control over the positioning of the lamp. It's in the lamp housing, and it's pretty much stationary. I've got to find a lower wattage bulb though. I was making prints of a still life yesterday, and I was exposing at 5 seconds, with a 3.5 graded filter in place too.

    I don't have any ND filters that I can use, so I may see if I can find a 25 watt bulb today, to help me increase my exposure times to I can dodge and burn better, or at least on this one image. I was printing on some Ilford MGIV glossy RC paper.
    Go to the light......

    www.keepsakephotography.us

  4. #4
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    Order a sheet of nd gel, stop the lens down, don't change the bulb. Smaller wattage bulbs will have a warmer color temp, are typically smaller, won't have the heavy frosting that a real ph series bulb has.
    www.vinnywalsh.com

    I know what I want but I just don't know how to go about gettin' it.-Hendrix

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    Pfiltz's Avatar
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    Thanks Vinny.

    Of course, not all my negs require max 5 seconds of exposure. This one did, because it was a really High Key type of shot, with minimal black imagery in it.

    Go to the light......

    www.keepsakephotography.us

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    You want to avoid clear and frosted lamps as well as ones with writing on the side or top (depending on bulb orientation). The lamps intended for enlarger use are (generally) white and have printed ratings in a discrete location to avoid an image of the filament and/or words/logo being projected through the lens.

    Note: This is for B/W enlargers that do not use halogen or dichro lamps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul_c5x4 View Post
    You want to avoid clear and frosted lamps as well as ones with writing on the side or top
    Really? Good to know, however; I'm using one bought at Walmart. One you would use in your house in a lamp. It's frosted and has print. The printing on the bulb does show up, when the condenser [Those 2 big pieces of glass] below the light lamp housing, are removed, otherwise; I don't see any printing on the board that the paper sits on.

    I guess I can google enlarger bulbs to see if I can grab one somewhere.

    Thanks
    Go to the light......

    www.keepsakephotography.us

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    Thanks Winger... I'll be calling them this week for some other items...

    I'll add this too
    Go to the light......

    www.keepsakephotography.us

  10. #10
    AgX
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    The printing on a bulb can either be taken off with solvent or with an abrasive paste.

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