Just got a Leitz Focomat V35 for free
A fellow APUG'er was kind enough to post a hint that a local school was giving away four Leitz Focomat V35 enlargers for free, and I was lucky enough to get one of them. I normally use a hybrid workflow, and have not made prints with an enlarger since elementary school, so I am pretty clueless on how to check if it is in working condition. The lens is there, and there is a multigrade module on the side of the enlargers head, but the timer unit seems to be missing.
So, guess it boils down to these questions:
- Is this particular enlarger any good?
- Anything special I should look for when examining it?
- Are timer units enlarger specific (ie do I need to find a Leitz?)?
- The enlargers I remember working with back in school did not have multigrade modules, where can I find more information on what that it does?
There are always different opinions, but you will find a lot of people claiming this to be the best 35mm enlarger ever.
You can use any timer you want.
The multigrade head works very well with all papers that I have worked with.
Finding lamps can be a bit tricky, though.
1. No it is a pices of crap
2. No just get rid of it. I provide such service for free.
Congratulation those are fine machines and if you look at DBA or E-bay youll see they often go for somewhat high prices.
I manage to find a description of it and the different lamps etc in the shape of som html-files.
I have turned it into a pdf.
Do you want it?
I'm one of those who think it's one of the best, if not the best ,enlargers for 35 that I have ever used. I'm using mine with the plain b/w module although I have used the colour one for vc papers. The Multigrade head is very hard to find and will usually cost and arm, and a leg.
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I've seen these Leitz V35 enlargers in the "real world" and they look well made but never used one. What is the benefit over a standard 35mm enlarger?
I've been using one for 20 years and it's an excellent enlarger. As was pointed out, any timer will work. If you plan to use it for any length of time, go to an electrical supply outlet and see if they can order bulbs for you - there were two different styles, depending on the specific enlarger. Hove still publishes a book, something like Leitz (or Leica) Darkroom Practice, that specifically deals with this enlarger.
It is a workhorse, although the autofocus is a bit fiddly. It should have come with a 40 mm Focotar lens; the autofocus is set for this lens. I don't know if it will work with a 50.
The only problem I have had with mine is one of the masking blades broke after 15 or so years and I haven't been able to find someone to fix it.
I have two of them, and they are really the best you can get for 35mm (in my humble opinion)
To my knowledge they use two different types of lamps, both with a GZ 6.35 socket.
One holder is for Philips 6604 and the other holder takes Philips 13139 or Osram 64615 lamps.
The autofocus works with the 40/2.8 and not with any other lens (you can still focus manually).
The 40/2.8 is excellent so don't bother to change.
this is the enlarger i use. very solid, the autofocus works perfectly, but you have to adjust the vertical column height before. i got the instruction manual directly fromn leica new jersey. ask them for one. i have the Hove book and do not recommend it. what carriers did you get?
Last edited by david James lee; 01-08-2010 at 08:41 AM. Click to view previous post history.
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