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Thread: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

  1. #1
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    The Great Waste Destruction Enlarger Purge is near complete. Started 2001, new infidels seeking stranglers under wicked DAYLIGHT!

    I first noticed these crimes the day I joined here

    Many Machines are HEADLESS, I bought what I could, accused here as HOARDER, the shame...

    We need low cost 4X5, 5X7, 8X10 and 11X14 LED heads

    We also need radical new enlargers of simple design

    Headless enlargers awake and work once more!

    Rise UP proudly

  2. #2

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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    The problem with designing a head isn't really the light source. So many options, most of them achievable at low cost, and often with DIY-friendly components.
    The real issue is the negative and lens stages - ensuring perfect alignment of lens and negative (with the base board as well), a negative stage that actually accomplishes (again in perfect alignment) good flatness as well as dealing with threats such as dust and newton rings (good luck getting your hands on affordable AN glass!), a solid & precise but DIY-friendly/simple focus mechanism...

    The electronics are trivial. The mechanics are the actual challenge.

  3. #3

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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    Maybe Intrepid will finally bring a 8x10 version of their enlarger head at some point. As long as it has a good negative carrier it will probably be decent for building it in a self-made 8x10 enlarger setup. I would also expect it to be at a decent price.

  4. #4
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED


  5. #5

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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    I've always thought it would be amazing to have an enlarger so simple, yet so rugged and precise...that there would be no "corrective" adjustments possible - just a rock solid baseboard, with a forged metal framework integrated into a forged column, with a simple yet rugged frame running on precise focus tracks (with both coarse and fine focus) - with two sheets of heavy optical glass for the negative carrier resting atop the frame...with a second frame, above and integral to the first, which would accept whatever light source you might want to place on top of it.

    Again...no planarity/parallelism adjustments possible - just so precise from the factory, and so ruggedly built, that it would always be perfect.

  6. #6

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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    Yeah John, the design doesn't have to be complicated for it to be good. However, coming up with a really good and yet simple design can be a...complicated effort! Especially if it also needs to be manufactured easily and at acceptable cost.

    Re:the intrepid contraption: sorry, but no. That's a toy. Way too flimsy, lacking in usability...it's a nice feature of a camera that it works of sorts as an enlarger, but that doesn't make it a good enlarger yet.

  7. #7
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    FOTAR and De Vere

  8. #8
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    Just expose your negatives with a Headless Horseman camera, and everything will match. On a more serious note, LED heads are likely to be far more realistic at this stage of technology for black and white VC printing than actual color printing. Tried and true halogen colorheads still make a lot more sense in the latter case. And the simple fact is, reliable LED pancake heads and "simple/affordable" seem to be antonyms. But if one is an experimenter type with decent shop skills and sufficient patience, you could build your own. But the biggest problem everyone chiming in on this thread so far probably has is just too many enlargers already. Decapitation might just be a self-destructive default to acquiring and storing still more. It's a nasty addiction.

  9. #9

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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    ...yep - heads will roll for sure!

  10. #10

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    Re: Headless LF Enlargers Rise UP!.....................LED

    John, I used 10x10 Fotars for many years. They were built like bridges and did not need adjustment... but the adjustments were there if needed; mostly during original setup. And they were set up properly by professionals, who PM'ed them twice yearly as as I recall. The Omega color heads needed attention now and then, but the chassis were built to last a hundred years. Such were the advantages of working for a company the size (then) of Eastman Kodak!

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