View Full Version : Enlarger ergonomics - a question
I知 planning a darkroom and that includes placing the Durst 606 enlarger on a working bench that I will build specifically for that purpose. I have no previous experience in working with enlargers and would like to know the ideal height for the working bench to allow an acceptable level of comfort while I知 using the enlarger - I presume it is best to stand while I知 using it, but correct me if I知 wrong. My precise question is: how distant from my eyes level should the working surface be.
I知 grateful for opinions and suggestions.
Many factors to consider when you set this height, including how big will the prints be you will be making. I like to place place easel high enough so I don't have to stoop over too much when using the grain magnifier - pretty high up. I work standing at the enlarger. You really have to figure this out for yourself based on how you like to work and other factors.
Have things so that you can stand or have a stool of the right height to sit on occasionally if you are going to spend much time in it. Joe
Thank you !
Most of the prints will be 20 X 30 cm or smaller. Will a chest-height bench be suitable ? Or perhaps something between chest-level and waist- level ???
My problem is that I don't know (lack of experience) how much I will need to bend my aging back to take a close look at the print...
I couldn't use mine if I had to stand. My set up has a swivel chair, making it easy to turn and pop the paper into the dev tank. A lot of time is spent waiting. My enlarger sits on a standard height table.
Just a point, if you have your enlarger high (at least in my house) it might not raise to full enlargement.
kitchen worktop height is about right. One thing to consider is that if the head is moved all the way to top of column, you must be able to reach the focus knob and other adjusters (filters etc) comfortably while having your eye in a grain magnifier, Chest high is too high IMO. Between a desk and kitchen worktop height is the norm I would say. Unless you have a height adjustable baseboard but I don't think thats the case with a 606.
If you can get hold of a wall mount they resolve two potential problems. Firstly they usually remove all vibration from column which can be a factor if the floor you are standing on or worktop is not really solid. And secondly they allow for a greater range of enlargement as easel top can slide below column base and at the same time your work surface becomes useable for other things because there is no enlarger base standing on it. Not essential but nice to have and they stay in alignment. And ceiling height is a factor too (as already mentioned) but the 606 column is not very tall. But if you upgrade to an 805 or an L1200 then you would do well to already have your worktop height at a height which would accomodate them too.
And you need to be able to look down on the print to see what you are doing when burning and dodging etc so again chest height would be be too high.
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