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Thread: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

  1. #21

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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    I don't know, I'll see it tomorrow. It is just hard to pass up, because I plan on getting into large format as soon as the funds allow, but one step at a time. and it would be nice to just get an enlarger now that will do everything, plus this one comes with everything, all the condensers, 50mm schneider lens, extension tubes, 2 neg holders (no legs broken on them), even original light, and is in amazing condition judging from the pictures and from what he tells me..is there that big of a difference between getting a 4x5 beseler enlarger vs a 5x7 Durst? Is the 5x7 actually that much harder to use, or is it just bigger, because if its just bigger, I'm 6'4'', so I could handle that.

  2. #22

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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    Like Larry said, the L-138s is a fine enlarger and can certainly be used for 35mm. You don't need extension tubes, you need recessed lens boards. If it has the Nega 138 glass negative carrier, but no inserts for 35mm, it's going to be a pain to use a 5x7 carrier to print 35. I would not get a Beseler enlarger, I'd get an LPL which is a much newer design and a far superior unit with carriers all the way from 35 to 4x5, 3 interchangeable light sources and holds it's alignment. If you've never printed, it will be much easier to learn (ie you're less likely to become discouraged) with a diffusion enlarger than a condenser one, but you do what you want, and you may figure it out eventually. Have you downloaded the owner's manual from the Durst-Pro-USA site? L

  3. #23
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    Pain? Why? I do it all the time. All you need is a simple cutout mask on the top glass for smaller negs using the Nega 138. Cost for that, essentially zero if you're
    willing to invest in a 5 cent razor blade. Omega enlargers are wonderful for beginners and classroom work, as are the Saunders. Plenty of people will use them
    for a lifetime. No criticism there. But there is nothing hard about using any of the Dursts. You might get a little intimidated by all the options in the literature.
    The main problem with them is that they tended to be used in industrial-scale commercial labs. Lots got hard hard use over many years. So condition is everything. And it helps if you have basic shop skills if you intend to refurbish one. But if you could choose between a Ferrari for free or a Toyota Corolla, what would you pick? And yes, my old Omega did go to the boneyard to make room for another free Durst, but by that I don't mean the dump - I mean some quiet corner of my lab, where the chassis is still installed, and all the components boxed up in storage. It will be reincarnated one way or another, or perhaps find a
    new home.

  4. #24
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    Forgot to address one thing - recessed boards, yes, for short lenses. I have some of those. But why not do like I do and use longer than "normal" lenses so you are just using the sweet spot of the optic at larger apertures? The Durst, with that long column allows you to easily do that. It stays steady due to both the quality of the build and its vertical rather than overhanging profile. And there are all kinds of neg carriers for them. Yeah, finding an unbattered Nega 138 can take a bit of patience, but I landed a nearly mint one for $35 - not bad for something that might have cost a grand originally with glass! These are precision devices with all kinds of fine-tuning on them, in an utterly different league than conventional enlarger carriers, which are basically just aluminum plates.

  5. #25

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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    One other strength of the Durst over the Omega D5 I have also used is the thing stays aligned for longer, and it's fast to realign with a laser alignment system if you every try tilts for perspective correction. The Omega is a lot more difficult to get just right in my experience.

    One of the reasons I built my LED system was I wanted a diffusion option in addition to the condensers. My system slides into the condenser slots. If you don't want to build something like that you would need to look for another head if you want diffusion printing. Of course you can get a simple plate cut for the Durst and mount other heads on that.

  6. #26
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    I own Durst,2000 - Devere 515 - and three omega condensor

    All are excellent - I would stay away from auto focus, and in all cases brace the column specifically the omega. Each enlarger has its good and bad points
    so I am neutral on which one to recommend as the best.

    spend good money on glass in all cases.

  7. #27
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    btw a free durst 4 x5 in Toronto if you are close

  8. #28

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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    Again, we're talking about someone who shoots 35 and has never set foot in a darkroom.....................so Bob, which would be best for someone who's never been inside a darkroom?

  9. #29
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    Yeah, I turned down the autofocus Durst even though it was the newest of the batch. Wanted something within my own shop skills to tinker with; so took a nice
    L184 and colorhead. All refurbished and new-looking except waiting for the new bellows. I've even matched the registration carriers to my own punch system. It was a pleasant Christmas break project while it was raining. I could have had any number of dozens of 4x5 Omegas or even six entire 8x10 Omega F's. But all the Omega and Beseler stuff probably went to landfill. They wanted to lease out the entire building quickly. He's into his 70's now and wants to concentrate on Sinar digital food photography, though the studio alone is an enormous space. It pays well and has the perk of eating the cusine of famous chefs after the shoot. I asked him to save the Omega carriers for the glass itself. Don't know if that happened or not. But he did save all the Durst glass and accessories. I talked him into selling the autofocus unit. Somebody will pay top dollar, perhaps 75K; but he hated it himself. Finicky, and all the carriers were proprietary to that model alone.

  10. #30

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    Feb 2016
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    Re: Durst 138s laborator light bulb

    This just popped up for sale, can anyone tell me what model omega it is? it is not listed.. Click image for larger version. 

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