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Thread: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

  1. #1
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    Got this some time ago mounted on a very rusty MX chassis which I recycled as this head will fit any 4X5 MX Beseler and can be made to fit my spare CB7, one day...

    The 50 Watt 120 VAC lamp glowed green when I powered it up and must be made for graded papers from the distant past, I do have a pile of old paper...

    The 2 sided plain glass 5X7 film holder OE glass was broken and discarded, easily replaced, it literally snaps shut with steel button!

    The head mounts to the bellows assembly with 2 bolts in U slots and the whole mess attaches with 2 more bolts to MX or whatever

    The lens boards are the same common Beseler boards that fit 2X3 to 8X10 Beseler chassis

    Since I like to update many old things with modern 'engines' LED conversion is very possible

    The bellows are stiff OE, but workable, gearing is still smooth with sliding filter drawer, which may have once had a red plastic filter

    NOT FOR SALE

    BTW whenever I scrap something I strip all usable parts like the Beseler elevation motor and belts which look the same to me for many models, over 7 decades...
    ADS_2789 by TIN CAN COLLEGE, on Flickr

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    ADS_2785 by TIN CAN COLLEGE, on Flickr
    sin eater

  2. #2
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    Very interesting, thanks Randy!!
    Bryan | Blog | YouTube | Instagram
    All comments and thoughtful critique welcome

  3. #3
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    You bet, today was almost 70, the shed was hot!

    Then a cat ran in, but I firmly started telling the cat there was no way out and she would die in there, said that twice

    and the cat came running from the distant rear right past me and out, it's a big shed with many places to hide

    Glad for both of us!

    Found other interesting things, I may write up...
    sin eater

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    Re: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    I love good junk.

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    Re: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    Some think that old cold lights are hopelessly weak, but because of the green or blue light, paper is very sensitive to these wavelengths...

    A bigger issue would be with MG papers, as there is a blue sensitive (contrasty) layer, and a green (flatter) layer, but hard to control both colors at once to balance contrasts unless the old Arista P45 (cyan) tube is used...

    Helping to maintain internal head temperature works well to stabilize light output, by adding insulation, reflecting the heat back to the lamp, and adding a heater using power resistors + a small power supply, or at least leaving the lamp on while working, maybe a shutter in front of lens closed until ready to make exposure...

    Cool that Randy is recycling these units into components, but don't start an enlarger farm!!! (Don't ask how I know...) These things can start talking to you in the dark!!! ;-)

    Steve K

  6. #6
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    Re: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    I find a use for almost anything, always have since very young, when I was told 'go outside, come back at dinner' in any weather in Minnesota

    Plenty to use in the woods, lakes, streams

    Too late about the enlarger farm. it is now mature and finally yielding good crop
    sin eater

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    Re: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    Quote Originally Posted by Tin Can View Post
    I find a use for almost anything, always have since very young, when I was told 'go outside, come back at dinner' in any weather in Minnesota

    Plenty to use in the woods, lakes, streams

    Too late about the enlarger farm. it is now mature and finally yielding good crop
    Local school here in North Dakota has a wind chill chart with the added notation "recess will not be outside when the wind chill is minus 18 degrees or colder".

    The playground area is cleared of snow drifts while leaving a nice layer of snow. The drifts pushed into a pile which is at times more than ten feet high. The kids play on it, slide down and play King of the Hill. Snowball fights on the playground - watched and moderated by teachers. Ice and slush balls result in a talking to or detention. Winter is a good time for the kids.

    In addition to the playground the outdoor rink is flooded and ice skating time offered. Other kids opt for the Air Rifle shooting team or the trap shooting team. Olympic style air rifles and pistols and both inside and outside shooting ranges for one and shotguns and a local gun club shooting range for the other. Has produced kids qualified for the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs as well as College scholarships for both types of marksmanship.

    Now all they need is a better Art program and a darkroom.
    "My forumla for successful printing remains ordinary chemicals, an ordinary enlarger, music, a bottle of scotch - and stubbornness." W. Eugene Smith

  8. #8
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    Re: BESELER MB57 Cold Lamp Enlarger History

    Never saw a playground until later in life near Philly

    We ice skated on lakes, made our snow forts anywhere, chased each other with cap pistols. Father made me special water skis. I was tiny. On them I could ski behind the 10 horse Merc Alumacraft. My brother, who outgrew me instantly, and I would beat each other with hockey sticks. The battle carries on... we share a B-Day

    First fired my father's Auto 5 age 7, knocked me right on my back, all adults laughed

    Later trained in Police station underground range using big bolt action 22 rifle. Shoot all day, pay only for paper targets

    We had a very good bird dog, so good the neighbor borrowed the dog, shot 3 pheasant in walking distance, brought the dog and 3 birds to his house, 1/4 mile away. He went in to tell his mother. Came right back out, dog and birds gone. Dog took all 3 at once to our house

    Same dog got the Thanksgiving turkey when my mother looked away. It was fully cooked and cooling. Mother howled!

    Best dog ever, later in PA she pulled a huge river rat up to our yard and sparred with it. I got worried and fetched a shotgun. Then the dog killed the huge rat. Smart dog.

    The good old days are gone
    sin eater

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