Available safelights on the UK and EU markets
Having made a test of my ILFORD 902 filter based safelight, and found it wanting - safe to only a minute after exposure, I went searching for a new 10x12" replacement filter, however these are no longer made by ILFORD. When working with more orthochromatically inclined materials I can use some very dark red and dim safelights, but I'd like to find a replacement for general work. I could resurrect the Paterson dome safelights, but the build quality of these units mitigates against being able to screw the dome back onto the base.
Any comments on the following options, coverage etc?:
- Kaiser 4018 - a 15W safelight with 9 cm x 12 cm filters. (would need several I'd imagine)
- Kaiser 4020 - 20 LED based safelight
- Nova 5 star LED safelight system - up to four blocks of 5 LED modules placed around darkroom
- Kindermann Dukalux SL tandem 2570 Darkroom Ceiling Lamp - somewhat expensive
- Encapsulite safelight - I can see these have an advantage in that one could install a red light for ortho requirements, and one for general VC and graded papers
When I had a large commercial darkroom I used an old Kodak sodium safelight but with normal bulbs and a dimmer switch. You could add a dimmer switch to your 902.
My current choice is the Photax safelight with the Brown VF dome, but I've no idea if they are still made. - Just seen they are now sold as Paterson safe lights and have replaced the older Paterson ones. I have no problems with the build quality at all.
Last edited by Ian Grant; 05-13-2010 at 08:41 AM. Click to view previous post history.
I use the Patterson safelights and have never had any form of quality issue with them and could highly reccomend them Richard
If you need a red filter try rubylith. Cut to the size you need and cover the existing filter. It should be available in a good art supply shop.
There is no need to replace your Ilford safelight, there are many filtering options available to you. Along with Rubylith, which is red, there is Amberlith which is more an OC safelight color. Rubylith is used for masking artwork when contacting ortho film for graphic arts. You can also use LEE or Rosco theatrical gels. The cheapest, at 30 cents a sheet, is red or orange vinyl masking film, but it is usually sold in 100 sheet packs.
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