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mijosc
16-Feb-2016, 08:49
So, this past weekend I rather impulsively purchased an Omega D3 "Automega" enlarger from Craigslist. It came with a focusing track for a 135mm Rodagon lens and a 1 1/2" lens cone for a 75-80mm lens. This is my first enlarger, I've never even made a print in the darkroom before, although it's something I've wanted to do for a while now. I had done some research about the D3 prior to purchase and was aware of some of its "quirks", although maybe not completely prepared for what I got myself into.

I've got a few thoughts/concerns/questions.

I have since purchased a 135mm Rodagon, but I'm having some problems finding a 4 1/4" lens cone. I thought I found one at my local camera shop, but it turned out to be for a D2. I've found a few places online that sell them, but the prices are very high (twice what I paid for the enlarger.) I'll probably post a WTB in the For Sale/Wanted forum. But if anybody knows where I might find a reasonably priced cone, please let me know.

Secondly, the bellows are in pretty rough shape; dry and with a number of pinprick holes. I think I can tape them up, but eventually they will need a replacement. I've found nothing online for replacement bellows. I may end up making them myself.

Lastly, I believe the D3 requires a 1 inch high easel for it to focus correctly. Any idea where I might find one? That's not a spec that is very common when looking for easels. I suppose I could always shim a thinner easel too.

I've got a bit of buyer's remorse at the moment. I kind of wish I would have waited for a nice D2 or D5 to become available. On the other hand, I'm excited for the project of finding everything I need, restoring what I have, and... eventually... making prints.

David Schaller
16-Feb-2016, 10:30
Others more knowledgable will chime in, but let me say--don't worry, be happy. You've already done the hard part.
Search Omega enlargers on Google and you may find that parts are still available new.

Dan O'Farrell
16-Feb-2016, 10:58
The place to go for information about the D3 is http://www.classic-enlargers.com/cgi-bin/yabb2_enlargers/YaBB.pl and register into the "Ask Harry " forum. Harry Taylor is the expert, and the D3 is one of his favourite enlargers. :)

Frank_E
16-Feb-2016, 11:58
I looked and didn't see any post of yours on APUG. I find there is often a goodly number of people advertising Omega enlarger parts on APUG. I suggest you put a WTB post there also.

Bill_1856
16-Feb-2016, 12:00
I have a D2, and an E3. Congratulations on your D3 -- Omega are FINE enlargers.
Don't worry about the Autofocus; it's not exact and will have to be touched up manually, anyhow. It's only really helpful if you're doing LOTS of prints, as in a photolab.

jnanian
16-Feb-2016, 12:09
you might contact http://store.khbphotografix.com as well.
they are good folks and might have what you are looking for.
i have an E as well, and when i was looking for a large negative carrier
they were going to fabricate one for me at very little cost, maybe they do the same for focus cones ?
in addition to an E i have a mil. contract d3V and (on both) i don't use the focus cones at all,
but i use the "auxiliary" focus cone. it was originally used for doing jewel prints ( reductions / wallet size images )
it has a bellows so you can attach whatever lenses you have on there, adjust the bellows, and not bother having to find a cone for every lens.

good luck with your enlarger, once you get it going you will be very happy you have it !
john

mijosc
16-Feb-2016, 12:23
All, thanks for the suggestions!

I have checked out http://www.classic-enlargers.com and it is a great resource. I've learned a lot about the D3 from that site. I will post some of my questions on that forum as well.

I do have an account on APUG and will post on there as well.

http://store.khbphotografix.com does have the the focus cone, but it is $150 (Canadian). It's a bit more than I would want to spend, but if I get desperate, at least I know there's an option.

ic-racer
16-Feb-2016, 13:10
This cone was listed November 28th and is still available: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Omega-Lens-Cone-for-D2-D3-4-/161901207272?hash=item25b2105ee8:g:v7IAAOSwNphWWk8e

mijosc
16-Feb-2016, 14:16
This cone was listed November 28th and is still available: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Omega-Lens-Cone-for-D2-D3-4-/161901207272?hash=item25b2105ee8:g:v7IAAOSwNphWWk8e

I saw that yesterday and it is on my watch list. That LOOKS like the correct cone, but there are a few things about that posting that give me pause.

- It says it's for a D2/D3 enlarger. However the cones are not compatible between the two.
- It says it's a 4 inch cone. I need a 4 1/4 in cone. (Probably just not measured carefully.)

If the seller offered returns, I'd probably take a chance. As it stands, I'm unsure. I do think it is the right cone though.

Don Dudenbostel
16-Feb-2016, 14:40
I saw that yesterday and it is on my watch list. That LOOKS like the correct cone, but there are a few things about that posting that give me pause.

- It says it's for a D2/D3 enlarger. However the cones are not compatible between the two.
- It says it's a 4 inch cone. I need a 4 1/4 in cone. (Probably just not measured carefully.)

If the seller offered returns, I'd probably take a chance. As it stands, I'm unsure. I do think it is the right cone though.

I had the E3 and don't think that's the correct cone for the D3. Looks like one for a D2 to me.

ic-racer
16-Feb-2016, 14:42
I have some good experience with the D3 and I pointed that one out because I think it is the correct one. It says "Automega" which is a name for the D3. Also, a D2 cone won't have a label on it for the focus track. I think they are just 1/4" off in the measurement. The D2 cone is going to be 4 1/2" and not have an indicator for the focus track.

The focus track number on that cone for sale may not be easily crossed referenced to your focus track because some focus tracks had cryptic numbers on them; frequently not the six-digit omega part number. How do you know you have a 135mm focus track. Does it say 135mm? Some are that easy to decode.

You should be able to make a bellows. The bellows only needs to move a small amount. Most of the focusing travel is via the lens cones.

mijosc
16-Feb-2016, 15:35
I have some good experience with the D3 and I pointed that one out because I think it is the correct one. It says "Automega" which is a name for the D3. Also, a D2 cone won't have a label on it for the focus track. I think they are just 1/4" off in the measurement. The D2 cone is going to be 4 1/2" and not have an indicator for the focus track.

The focus track number on that cone for sale may not be easily crossed referenced to your focus track because some focus tracks had cryptic numbers on them; frequently not the six-digit omega part number. How do you know you have a 135mm focus track. Does it say 135mm? Some are that easy to decode.

You should be able to make a bellows. The bellows only needs to move a small amount. Most of the focusing travel is via the lens cones.

Thanks. I may make a lowball offer on that lens cone and see what happens. I'll still need a 39mm mount, but those are easy enough to find.

The focus track that came with my D3 specifically says 135mm Rodagon on it.

I actually think making a small set of bellows might be kind of fun... Or very frustrating! I found a set here for slightly more than I want to pay, but this hobby isn't cheap. http://store.khbphotografix.com/Replacement-Bellows-for-Omega-D-3-Enlargers-Used.html

mijosc
16-Feb-2016, 15:39
Also, I assume these are the longer accessory bellows mentioned by someone.

http://store.khbphotografix.com/Auxiliary-Focusing-Attachment-for-Omega-D3-D-4-B-E-and-F-series-Enlargers-Used.html

Would these completely replace the existing bellows and the need for a specific lens cone? If so, that could solve two problems in one.

Chauncey Walden
16-Feb-2016, 18:00
No, this fits in the lens board holder below the regular bellows. I use one of these for a 150mm lens on my Automega E. The 135 is on a 1.5 inch extension cone although if I wasn't using the extension bellows for the 150 I'm sure the 135 would work there also. I cobbled together a 4 inch cone for my 180mm. I wouldn't sweat holes in the regular bellows unless they were projecting light onto your paper. If they bother you, a little black Plastidip thinned and applied with a fine brush will seal them just fine.

jnanian
16-Feb-2016, 19:32
Also, I assume these are the longer accessory bellows mentioned by someone.

http://store.khbphotografix.com/Auxiliary-Focusing-Attachment-for-Omega-D3-D-4-B-E-and-F-series-Enlargers-Used.html

Would these completely replace the existing bellows and the need for a specific lens cone? If so, that could solve two problems in one.

yes that is the auxiliary bellows focusing attachment i was talking about. i have 2 of them, one for the E and the other for the D.
when i got mine, they didn't cost anywhere near that much, sorry they cost so much ! just the same, i haven't ever bought a lens cone since 1988.
and it allows me to use any lens on that enlarger, so i can do 110 - 4x5 without a problem, and make wallet prints too ! :)
the aux bellows slides in where the lens cone would go. you can fix your bellows with gaffer tape, i wouldn't make new ones by hand
unless they are so shot they are useless, and even then, i would make bag bellows ... attach a black bag from photo paper and tape it on the top and bottom
of where the bellows attaches. good luck !

DG 3313
16-Feb-2016, 22:38
I have the Omega D3 Dicro (Super Chromega D). My 135mm focus rail has a decal on it that states 135 Rodagon. I guess I wasn't paying attention 20 years ago when I bought my new El-Nikkor 135, 5.6 lens. I'm on my third bulb with this enlarger but, I still use the same 11"x14" sheet of 3/4" plywood to raise the easel. I hope you are 1/2 as happy with your new enlarger as I am with mine. My cone is closer to 4 3/8.....depending where you measure from........

Don