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  1. #1
    yeknom02's Avatar
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    Making a Simple 4x5 Enlarger?

    I am trying to think of things to do with my 4x5 negatives apart form just scanning them or contact printing. I really only want to enlarge up to an 8x10, which is my favorite print size. I was wondering, since this is a simple doubling of each dimension, are there any simple fixed enlarger designs (sort of like a Daylab printer for making Polaroids from slides) that will help me turn my 4x5s into 8x10s?

    I really don't have the space or money for another enlarger for my very few 4x5s and thought this might be a neat little idea. I don't know that much about optics and I wonder if this is even possible.
    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST
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  2. #2

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    You can convert your camera into an enlarger, by adding a light source and some sort of negative holder. I have not done this yet but I plant to. They used to make a device called a graphlarger, and others that comes up on the used market time to time.

    it's actually spelled graflarger

  3. #3

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    I have toyed with the idea of making a fixed enlarger but when I get into it it always seems to get more and more complicated. I know that I would like the ability to crop the pictures and then realise that a standard enlarger is the right tool for the job, for me at least.

  4. #4
    Rick A's Avatar
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    You can always convert a Beseler 23 into a 4x5 enlarger. I've seen a couple of threads on the subject.
    Rick A
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  5. #5
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Get a 4x5 enlarger and get rid of your other enlarger. You will be able to do all formats 4x5 and smaller. Midwest USA is probably the best place in the world to live in terms of getting cheap or free darkroom equipment.

    Are you near Harrisburg, PA? There is a Chromega 4x5 Enlarger with lenses, cones, carriers, power supply and timer for $55 on craigs list. I'd be all over that.
    Last edited by ic-racer; 04-01-2011 at 04:32 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  6. #6

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    Dear yeknom02,

    I'd like to second the purchase of a 4x5 enlarger. They are plentiful and the price is right.

    Neal Wydra

  7. #7
    yeknom02's Avatar
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    You guys should audition for Satan's job. You're so tempting....

    I just can't have two enlargers at once for any amount of time, at least at this point in my life... I may have to go the alternate route that Rick suggested and look into a conversion.
    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST
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  8. #8

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    I did this one time when I lived in Yellowstone park for the summer one time. I used my Speed Graphic a hot lamp (NO, not with its intended 500W bulb), a tripod and a some black board and tape. It had a glass negative carrier with a sheet of thick frosted glass over it. Yeah it worked. I was able to make prints for my coworkers, which is all I really wanted with the setup. But it was ROYAL P.I.T.A. getting it set up perfectly. I would never suggest this to anyone with the cost of enlargers now. If you don't have room for two, I'd sell the little one and get a 4x5 enlarger.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  9. #9
    yeknom02's Avatar
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    Is there a 4x5 enlarger that would take the round carriers that I use for the Beseler 23C?
    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST
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  10. #10

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    No, but you could rig them to fit in a Beseler 45 enlarger simply by sandwiching them between pieces of black matboard. The bottom boards would need to have a circle of the proper size cut to accept the bump on the 2x3 neg carriers. The proper Beseler 45 neg carriers have pins on the bottom side that center the carrier, but these are not absolutely necessary. However, your 4x5 enlarger will likely come with at least one carrier, and they are not that expensive on the used market. Do you have any uncommon ones that you are concerned about losing?
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

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