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  1. #1

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    An enlarger too far ? Not question just a ramble

    I've been properly into photography for the past 7 years and started with a set of hand me down equipment my father left and an old 50's black crackle finish enlarger. They were the days, no choice to get in the way of picture making. Anyway, with the rise in Digital and the following demise in professional film printing, I have found myself in the position to buy top quality enlargers at give away prices. It stated with a 60's durst Laborator 54 with all its condensers from a printing house in Norwich. This is a table top beast but still weighs in at 100Lbs and is 5 ft tall (£50). I thought this will do for medium format I'll never need another. The next one was a local add for another Durst M700 with lenses (£70) 35 mm sorted. After my usual trawl through E-bay I stumbled across a Durst 138s with condensers and bits. (£60 ). After a 4 hour drive I found that the enlarger had belonged to a Dr Heinz Zinram a London underground and british railways photographer. It was pristine condition with an additional agfa head. His lovely family were clearing out his old darkroom and said I could have anything from this pile of equipment. I promptly filled the car up to the gunnels and still had to leave a more than I could bare. There was a small van load of 60's lighting, boxes full of old flash bulbs, lighting tripods etc etc but the car was full and there was no time for a return trip...
    So with a sad heart I drove away, but pleased as punch with my purchase.The months went by and then the drug e-bay hit me again. I had been keeping half an eye out for a 8 x 10, for when I eventually take a plunge in that direction. I then saw a Kamm with a devere 5108 head. (£120) I promptly travelled a few hundred miles to pick it up and get it home. What a beast, its all smoke and mirrors. Its got an elaborate cable and pulley system to counter weight the head and table. It stands close to 11ft hight and make the 138s look puny in comparison. My darkroom is 14 x 10 and on 14 ft wall is just full of enlargers. this obviously doesn't mention the freebees you pick up over time that are stuck in the cupboard, and old Gnome, a russian suitcase a nasty old durst amateur model. I am dreading the day when I see a Durst or devere 8 x 10.....for sale cheap..

    Anyone in the same boat?


    Andy

  2. #2
    Ole
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    You wouldn't happen to have room for a 4x5" Rajah, would you? I don't...
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  3. #3

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    No, My boat works just fine with one anchor.
    Claire (Ms Anne Thrope is in the darkroom)

  4. #4
    raucousimages's Avatar
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    To make a long story short, at one time I found myself with eight enlargers. I didnt want them but two were given to me as in I came home and there they were. Two were part of large purchases where I only wanted some things but the entire darkroom was one lot. And one was put together from parts from a local studio. (I still know where 3 omega 4x5 enlargers are in parts but not in good shape) I was able to sell and donate all but the three I realy want. A Saunders 4500 VCCE, A 1950's devere 8x10 and a 1978 Vivitar VI (second enlarger I owned) Just for kicks I would like a leica V35 it would be fun to print my leica negs with it but I can't justify the cost or space.

    On the other side of the process (and an even longer and stranger story) I now have 10 large format cameras. for 20 years I wanted into LF and after purchasing a new toyo 45 AII I was sold cheap or given all sorts of cameras and accessories including a large lot of broken toyo 45 E's That I rebuilt into four useable cameras that are now headed for ebay. The others are used by myself and my children.

    Right now there is a great surplus of old gear for the asking if poeple know you will use it, and you are in the right place at the right time.
    DIGITAL IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF THE DARK.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by raucousimages
    To make a long story short, at one time I found myself with eight enlargers. I didnt want them but two were given to me as in I came home and there they were. Two were part of large purchases where I only wanted some things but the entire darkroom was one lot. And one was put together from parts from a local studio. (I still know where 3 omega 4x5 enlargers are in parts but not in good shape) I was able to sell and donate all but the three I realy want. A Saunders 4500 VCCE, A 1950's devere 8x10 and a 1978 Vivitar VI (second enlarger I owned) Just for kicks I would like a leica V35 it would be fun to print my leica negs with it but I can't justify the cost or space.

    On the other side of the process (and an even longer and stranger story) I now have 10 large format cameras. for 20 years I wanted into LF and after purchasing a new toyo 45 AII I was sold cheap or given all sorts of cameras and accessories including a large lot of broken toyo 45 E's That I rebuilt into four useable cameras that are now headed for ebay. The others are used by myself and my children.

    Right now there is a great surplus of old gear for the asking if poeple know you will use it, and you are in the right place at the right time.
    Please don't get me started on cameras, 3 devere's, a kodak specialist, 2 MPP's, mamiya TLR's coming out of my ears, etc etc


    :-)


    andy

  6. #6
    raucousimages's Avatar
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    It's almost funny thar after so many years of just getting by with what ever gear I could scrape together the surplus has hit with a vengance. I am glad that my children are learning to shoot I hope they enjoy it and keep this gear in use.
    DIGITAL IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF THE DARK.

  7. #7
    joeyk49's Avatar
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    Not enlargers here, just lenses...

    ...probably five or six during the past twelve months. Nothing spectacular, a couple of rokkor x's for one of my minoltas, and a couple of tele's...

    The wife's now told me that I have to sell one to get one...."sigh!"



 

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