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Thread: Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

  1. #1

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    Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

    Having scored a couple of useful parts off flea bay I've got a bit of time to start nailing them together into an upgrade from my (also fleabay sourced) Devere 54. The 54 has been good; it's allowed enlarging of 5x4s where before I could only go to 6x6, but the focus mechanism makes me have to adopt a weird arm up look down stance whilst looking through the grain focuser. Also I can take 5x7 but not print them with the 54. So an upgrade was desired, preferably with 8x10 potential for future.

    What I got was a Devere 108, a really really old 108. It has wheels and chains to move the lamp house and lens stage independently so arms are down at the print board level when making adjustments and I'llnot have to do yoga poses to focus! Yay!

    Also in the deal was a lamp house/filter draw/condenser unit, of indeterminate vintage but also of Devere manufacture.

    I successfully converted the 54 from cold cathode to work off an LED source (actually overly bright) and the first incarnation of this Frankenstein will use this light source to get me going.

    This poor fevered mind has conjured up the idea that the condenser lamp-house/filter draw turned upside down, ditch the condenser and put on LED's will do something. The filter draw looks almost identical to the 54 negative draw so I'll convert it to hold the negs (its huge so should take 8x10s in the future).

    I'll get some pics together to illustrate my thoughts and how everything is getting nailed together. More soon!

    Rob

  2. #2

    Join Date
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    Re: Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

    Hey Rob, looking forward to seeing what you come up with especially the Led light source. How did you build it and do you have any pics to share?

    Andy

  3. #3

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    Re: Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

    So I've pulled the old lamp house apart an put the LEDs in to where the condenser sat. Hole was perfect.

    Before:
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    After:

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    It's just an LED downlighter, 140w 4000k. I've heard tell on here that the light off these is uneven, which maybe true but for my efforts I've never seen anything. I like to shoot with intricate detail, leaves in landscapes etc so there is often lots going on, maybe any effects get lost? Planning a couple of extra diffusion layers directly over the neg to combat anything that is happening.

    Top side:

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    Hole looks jagged but that's black tape that I held it in with before screwing.

    Here's the Devere 54 neg stage draw, the 5x4 neg holder and the 108 filter draw. Initial plan is to put a bit of 9mm board with a cut out to adapt the 5x4 neg holder to the 108 filter draw.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  4. #4
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Re: Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

    Somehow it seems upside down. The diffusor on the LED lamp has to be close to the negative; the farther from the negative area, to more the lamp has to overlap the edges.

  5. #5

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    Re: Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

    As I said, it's going to have a couple more diffuser layers directly over the negative. Can't have enough diffusion! Which is what I did on the 54, I just swapped out the cold cathode for the down lighter and relied on the cold cathode diffuser ~ 1" above the neg.

    On the 54 I always had it stopped right down as this lamp gives off so much light, really always wanted an ND filter or a couple of stops gone via more diffusers but just soldiered on. Time will tell, we will see what this does.

    Half a Sunday, some screws, some 18mm ply and basic tools et voila!!

    That's the lamp house on. Next stop, take away the struts holding what was the lamp house (bottom bit underneath the bellows) and make another cantilever to hold the lens stage. Then a bit of Matt black paint, shimming and aligning. Oh and a door on the 'darkroom' which is actually the toilet area of my 4x4 camper truck "Mutley".

    Ok so the images want to lie down! Hey ho, let them!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_0342.jpg   IMG_0239.jpg  

  6. #6
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Re: Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

    Looks good. It was hard to tell what was going on from the previous pictures.

  7. #7

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    Re: Frankenstein Bitsa 8x10 enlarger build

    Haha, hard to tell when I'm doing it! All good fun!

    Thanks

    Rob

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