View Full Version : building an 8x10 enlarger

8-Dec-1998, 17:10
Anyone out there built their own 8x10 enlarger? i know that Adam's had an overvi ew in his book, what are some of the problems you've encountered? I have drawn up plans to build one out of an old c-1 from old strings on this forum, thanks q uang-tuan, i envision it mounted to a tripod base which is attached to a large m etal toolbox with locking casters, and a light source bag bellowed to the back o f the camera that is secured to the top of the toolbox. I would like to use the camera for it's original purpose as well but can see a problem with removing the ground glass everytime i need to enlarge. I know this sounds complete but what light source? i hate cold light and want to make big prints, how do i secure ver tically designed condensers for a horizontal enlarger, are spare vert condensers cheap? And what about the light source, I'd like to buy one, but if i have to learn how to build and regulate and cool and diffuse a halogen source i will. I don't want to but i will. I've heard of using a aristo cold light source, but do es it put out enough light? I am desperately addicted to large format and am tir ed of contact prints only, also if any of you want to give a underpriviledged ph otog your used devere, eseco, or other such 10x10 it would be greatly appreciate d. hey i only live about 40 miles from eseco, do think i could find a factory re ject in their dumpster?

8-Dec-1998, 17:17
had to leave sorry, please leave suggestions here as i'm much too poor to have e-mail or a computer. This is a friends computer,Thank you.

8-Dec-1998, 17:20
oh yeah i meant to ask another diy question, how would i go about building a 52" inch p3x ilfochrome processor out of an old sock drawer and a bag of cheesey poofs? the big bag of course.. tah again, Tribby

Sean Billy Bob Boy yates
10-Dec-1998, 00:10
Aaaah, Triblett. It is good to know a person such as you is loose in the world!

10-Dec-1998, 11:39
hhhmmmm.....gosh, i never thought that might happen. jeez, that would be a problem, thanks for pointing that out SEAN. That is a design flaw. I don't know how I'll ever repay you. youv'e saved me countless hours and dollars. Sean Yates I am forever in your debt.

Sean Billy Bob Boy yates
10-Dec-1998, 12:28
"If we spirits have offended, think but this, and all is mended..." Sorry dude, just expressing appreciation for your evident sense of humor and seeming self parody...

10-Dec-1998, 13:11
Just a little friendly ribbing Sean, glad you appreciate it and see it for what it is "humor". Others, on other threads, have described it as villification. Although, I hope that the jist of the query is taken semi-seriously as this is my winter project and don't want to hack up my girlfriend out of boredom. Vivasections and villifications, Tribby son of Mummington

Sean Billy Bob Boy yates
10-Dec-1998, 14:58
Allllllllll ritey then.....

Try calling/writing Ron Wisner. For awhile he made/sold the Wisner Verbal Advantage, an adapter for his original 8 X 10 camera (called the classic, looks a lot like a wooden C-1, but better moves) which turned it into an enlarger. If he doesn't have any parts or originals left over, he may be willing to give you some advice. I once saw an add for someone selling the V.A. and a Deardorff adapted to take it. Why it was called Verbal I have no idea.

If you're committed to the DIY approach, you can ignore the following, but if you look hard enough, you'd be surprised how little an Elwood would cost, like $750.00 sometimes, depending on condition. If you've got the room for a horizontal, and don't want to do color, that'd be a cheap way to go. Could you afford a trip to Chicago with a pickup truck and a tarp? If so, lemme know, I may be able to help you locate one here-abouts.

Lastly, just curious, no axis or axes to grind, but why do you hate cold light?

10-Dec-1998, 16:16
Heeeeyyy, Deardorfenlander,Danke fur dem invite, I know a portrait photog with an elwood but he won't sell it to me. Mpex has a chasis but I was determined to build this'n off the shelf at Lowe's. Or, maybe I'll shoot up I-35 and see ya some time. Wizzy's made a 8x10 graflarger huh? Cool. Ohh, i dunno about the shit i say some times, maybe it's aesthetics, that wierd lookin cold stuff comin out of my buddies enlarger lens just dudn't look right. When i compare prints from my prehistoric condenser to his prehistoric c-light(same neg,d&p) the cold one seems dull, not flat, but like apx 25 or somethin, you know specular highlights are getting stepped on. Probably a paper problem,not the light, Expo G looks good at home and i can't expect the same from his and prefer mine. Don't have a densitometer, too poor you know, Besides i got one built-in(right eye transmission, left eye, well now, more of my blatherings. You know if you do find me a good deal on a elwood in the sweet home. Bluesy huh, I'll be followed by my usual wake of destruction,urine,spilt beer, and law enforcement types. So watch out! This web-thingy is weird, I wouldn't go around invitin' Okies like me up there, could get hairy. Especially if I run down to Matamorros and get JP. He's my pal, sssnnnnnnooooooorrrrrttt. Just kiddin, don't i wish. heller cool later

Sean Billy Bob Boy yates
11-Dec-1998, 01:20
Ya no, yew 'mahnd me uv uh guy ah new, wen ta TewLayn, magered in Porchewgeez EkNmaik histree, Spent uh LOTTUH tahm in BruhZil & Indeeyuh, Awl uv thu Seventies & uh gud bit uv thu ayteez. He wudn't reel tekniklee uhstewt tho' az yew seem tuh be. A'hll keep my nose, er ahz open fer sumpin' reel cheep up this-away. Hayv yew herd uh Darkrewm Aydz? They went owtta bidness & therz uh fella, bawt most uh they're stuff, A'hll give him uh kawl see wut heez got. Knock bak uh few kold wunz fer me!

11-Dec-1998, 12:43
Seem ahh Seem, well, Tankye,dere Mick, alkdjf diiiena; kdiioal. idjoao'ooe. iciici..ufafu9.mnvvnnaxp'xmcv.//aoz'papapp mdjjdx,jcajiowljf,,a;djfw;'..va'ldkfkal ldfa'dl aldjoe eemw fowmw woeof'am aodsf'a a na''sdo a od'kfmwemwm asda aaj ahwhwheweow woe w eowiwo,mcnnvsn4en;nnvionwnvowieh pppppphhhhhfffffffffaaaaaaarrrrrttttttt. I jes' lub de weigh youins tawlk, an Iza rat glad youin iz aybelta figger out jes' howzmart iwuz, did youins smoke a whole ricks o' blunt dis mornin' er jes' a haf? Me an awl mah renneck buddees izza gonna drive up ta see youins,pickups, gunrax an all, mebee Jiine up wid dem gangstr tipes youins gotts up yonder an mebee taik ober demwhole viedt welt, Conrad. Me an mah pardner's lub dat chicango meeyuesic. Lack dem New Duncan Imperials, sheeeiiittt them fellers are cuntry..ah meen Reeyaal cuntry. An I'd lack ta invite yu and yuins, ta visitate dowyn ta da pike fur awhile,er a spell, ya know I can git ya yer ricks aho lot cheapr downdisway. An bathtub crank mordan ya can shake yer long pankynail at . Hey, now holt on heer jes' a damn minute, yu aint sum kine a art fag frum dat institute aR ya? we cain't cottan ta no art fags. yew no iffen yer ta rat type weee mite jes' keep youin. We, dats mah boys, weyall got one o dem dere ol' chickin coops out back yu'll lack rite-nice, got three koreeyan gals lock'd down out dere,whuppin up sum crank,whut me an ta boys stole dem veeyatmanees outta dat dere college town. Shyeeiiit we nock out demses chimanees grrls frunt toofs out an learnt em' how ta keep menfolk cump'nee. Boy,Sean, yuins got rat purrty mouth. aaawww hell hear i is tryin ta sweet tawlk ya. pay no nevermind, Abyssinia, Triblett Lunger-Thurd, son of Mummington ps you seem moderately astuted your damn self. Sorry to hear about your aids,that's a tough break.

Richard Fish
15-Dec-1998, 22:52
If you'd like to think about buying an Elwood 8x10, Thompson's has one listed on their Web page <www.thompsonphoto.com> for $700 WITH a [unspecified] lens. I've used an 810 Elwood for 20 years with an Aristo coldlight head, and this Fish is happy as a clam.

16-Dec-1998, 14:29
Thanks Dick I'll check that'n out.

Old Gray Beard
16-Dec-1998, 15:55
Get back to work Triblett.

16-Dec-1998, 16:22
Kids, I want you to disregard anything said by my personal physician Dr. Old Gray Beard, he has certainly not taken his anti-depressants today and you shouldn't encourage his shcizoid behavior. The work he urged me to return to is a matter of national security and he should never use the web for those communications. I will reprimand him but be careful not to remember anything he says to me or any of you, our national security and your life depends on it. Thank you all, Uber-Captain Lunger-Thurd of the Royal Canajun Kilted Yaksmen.

27-Sep-1999, 05:08
My teacher, Bernie Freemesser, used to talk about building a horizontal 8x10 enlarger using an aluminum extension ladder. Four years ago (20 years after his death) I built one from a Omega F chassis ($600), resting in a wooden cradle, and a Kodak metal camera, all attached to half of one section the ladder trussed a foot or so above the other half. I constructed "speed-easel"ish frames for each size paper I use from aluminum picture frame moulding with peg-board backing, allowing the smaller ones to be quickly positioned on the largest board that is affixed perpendicular to the second (sliding) ladder section. I will build a vacuum frame eventually.

As you guessed, keeping the vertical-design condensers in place in a horizontal position was tricky, solved by sawing a ring out of a hefty black plastic planter, of the right diameter and just the right height to wedge each condenser lens into its aluminum mounting ring. The easiest negative carrier was an old wooden film holder with the wooden partition between the two sides cut out, leaving just the window and the film-holding slots.

The only real problem I've had is that I got a hot spot when using the Omega lamp-house positioned as I received it (anyone know why?). I ultimately took out the final ring so that the lamp is 6 inches or so closer to the film and now get uniform illumination.