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Thread: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

  1. #11
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    Quote Originally Posted by John Dey View Post
    [...] Very old Arista cold light heads only work well with fixed grade paper so using filters is a moot point.
    I did not know that. Add another super caution to my list. I did luck out by buying a case of enlarging bulbs long ago.

    I will learn more about Arista cold heads.

  2. #12
    My Passion Is Learning
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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    John, Im not by it right now, I will be tomorrow though and I will inspect. The head is branded Beseler.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Heres the page from the manual. My head looks exactly like the one pictured here except without the drawer. Its as if it got unscrewed from the drawer segment and that part went the way of the dodo.

    The "Filter drawer" I am saying I do have is Item number 10 in the manual. Small slide out drawer for a small filter directly behind the lens.

    Michael, interesting! I tried to pry it out and it seemed like it was permanent but perhaps it was just stuck. Ill try to pop it out. Didn't seem right to have it there, but being that this is my first personal enlarger I couldn't say for sure.

  3. #13

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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    The filter behind the lens is for the red filter, not for MG or color filters...

    I'm sure you can purchase another condenser head housing online (with the filter drawer) for very little $$$, so look for that first... The very early units may not have the drawer, as that was earlier before home color printing was common (where a CP filter could be placed)...

    You can also make a lamphouse adapter tube where you can mount an inexpensive 6X6 color head at the same height where the old lamp would have been, and you can dial in a full range of colors for B/W and color printing...

    Then there's those PC filter holders that screw under/on the lens and a filter set (now probably under a few bucks online)...

    Steve K

  4. #14

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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    Quote Originally Posted by TroyG View Post
    John, Im not by it right now, I will be tomorrow though and I will inspect. The head is branded Beseler.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Heres the page from the manual. My head looks exactly like the one pictured here except without the drawer. Its as if it got unscrewed from the drawer segment and that part went the way of the dodo.

    The "Filter drawer" I am saying I do have is Item number 10 in the manual. Small slide out drawer for a small filter directly behind the lens.

    Michael, interesting! I tried to pry it out and it seemed like it was permanent but perhaps it was just stuck. Ill try to pop it out. Didn't seem right to have it there, but being that this is my first personal enlarger I couldn't say for sure.
    #3A "Bescolor Compartment" is where you ideally want to place filters. This is so the light will be modified before it hits the negative or transparency.

    IMHO, you do not want any filter in the image path so I would not use #10. Although when I was a newspaper photographer, that is exactly where we used them. LOL!

    If you manage to find a head with #3A try to be sure it comes with a small metal frame to hold the gels. When I owned my 4x5" Omega enlargers, I used gels for color and B&W printing. It was a square metal frame so I assume Besseler used one as well. I believe mine was 5" square. Those Kodak gels were expensive back then and I suppose now they are more rare than hen's teeth.

    I have a friend who owns a 4x5" Beseler; I just sent him an email asking if his has a metal frame for #3A.

    A few places to look for a Beseler head assembly:
    Wing's Camera - Atlanta, Georgia
    Quality Camera - Atlanta, Georgia
    KEH - Marietta, Georgia
    Columbus Camera Group - Columbus, Ohio
    There are probably more that others here will suggest...
    Last edited by AtlantaTerry; 8-Aug-2017 at 18:48. Reason: Polishing my prose.

  5. #15

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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    Quote Originally Posted by John Dey View Post
    It looks like you have an aftermarket cold light head or some other type of light source. I do not reconize it, but the old Arista Cold light heads have a plan aluminum finish similar to yours. You should check which type of light source you have. It might have a label on it somewhere. Very old Arista cold light heads only work well with fixed grade paper so using filters is a moot point. Let us know what you find.
    Older Aristo heads (don't know which ones you're referring to by "very older") will work with VC paper if you add a CC30y or (preferably) a CC40y filter. There has been discussion of this on this forum. May not be perfect in terms of the contrast range, but still very usable.

  6. #16

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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    The small filter drawer (#10 in the illustration posted above) was indeed intended for VC filters along with the red filter. Beseler made a boxed set of VC filters that fit this drawer. I have a set still, nicely packaged in an old blond Beseler box with the Beseler logo all over it. The filters are of optical quality and in black plastic frames. Slots in the box hold them from touching one another. Ilford makes VC filters in optical quality nowadays and these could easily be cut to fit and/or put in frames to fit in the #10 filter slot. Sure, the ideal case would be to have no filter in the optical path. That said, no one worries about putting a quality filter on a camera lens; nor should they worry about using one when enlarging. Heck, VC filters in front of the lens in a clip-on or swing-arm holder are very common and they are in the optical path. A filter behind the lens will add no more degradation than one in front. One caveat: since the filter is behind the lens in this configuration, focusing should be done with the filter in place for the most exact results.

    Best,

    Doremus

  7. #17

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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    What I did was find Series VI slip-on adapters for my enlarger lenses and then I epoxied a series 6 retaining ring to the filter holder. When it stops raining her, I'll wander out to the darkroom and take some pictures.

  8. #18

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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    Okay, I got out to the darkroom and took a few pictures of my Polycontrast filter holder setup. I glued a series 6 to 7 step up ring to the filter holder. The series 6 lens adapters screw on to the series 6 threads.Click image for larger version. 

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    I use series 6 slip on adapters for my lenses. FYI- a 37mm slip on will fit both a 50mm f4 El-Nikkor and a 80mm f5.6 El-Nikkor.

    For larger lenses, you might have to glue a series 7 retaining ring to the filter holder and use series 7 adapters on the lens.

  9. #19
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    That should work!

  10. #20

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    Re: Where to put filters in my new Beseler 45M

    Quote Originally Posted by Jac@stafford.net View Post
    That should work!
    Unless you want to do split grade filtratin. You can have a lot of vibration, not to mention possibly focus changes, handling the lens to change filters.

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