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24x30
11-04-2004, 02:17
I'm curious about how many of you still working in a classic darkroom (with enlarger etc. ...)?

/rudi

rover
11-04-2004, 02:49
I don't have a darkroom, but I have started to develop my own B&W film. I think I will do a little more of that as my Holga arrived yesterday and I can't see spoiling the artistic experience of that camera by having the film developed by a pro.:)

Brian Sweeney
11-04-2004, 03:17
I have my darkroom setup, enlarger, film drier, tanks, etc that I gor when I was 16, 30 years ago. I need to get it setup again, just need the time.

pvdhaar
11-04-2004, 04:22
Don't have a darkroom, but followed a course when in school (about a quarter century ago or so). I think it's an invaluable experience. But it also showed that I won't ever set one up myself. Apart from my objection that has to do with the chemicals --I'd never forgive myself if the kids would get harmed by them--, I rather spend time taking new pictures..

denishr
11-04-2004, 04:32
I have one - albeit very small. And I don't use it as often as I'd like. But, it comes in handy for B&W negative development, which I do quite frequently.
I'm about to get on loan a nice Durst 35mm enlarger, so hopefully my Leica negs will really shine when printed on that one :)

GeneW
11-04-2004, 05:01
Mine's packed away in the basement. Nice Durst enlarger with El Nikkor and Schneider Rodagon enlarging lenses for 35mm and 6x6, Saunders 4-blade easel and Durst darkroom timer. Lovely gear, but I don't miss using it a bit. I prefer a good scanner.

Gene

rick oleson
11-04-2004, 05:17
I've been without mine since buying a basementless house in 1998. But this August my last daughter went off to college, and last weekend I began a project to turn the kids' bathroom into a darkroom. Soon I'll be back on the road, with dozens of rolls of developed but unprinted black & white film backed up and waiting.....

:)=

svwa
11-04-2004, 05:19
I use my bathroom as darkroom. Has a table in there with a permanent placed Meopta 6a Meograde enlarger, El-Nikkor 63 mm lens (just-perfekt for both 135 film and 120 film) and an el-timer.
It is still the same "wonder" to see the contours of the picture gradually show up in the developer. No computer or photoshop-program in the world can replace that, for me.

sfaust
11-04-2004, 05:27
I had a full darkroom in the past (way past). I enjoyed it quite a bit. My current darkroom is a dry darkroom, scanner, and high quality printer.

I don't want to get involved in developing film, but hae been toying with the idea of getting an enlarger setup for MF or 4x5. I'd enjoy the print making, but find film developing just tedious and would rather skip that step. So I am thinking of sending out the film for developing, scanning and inkjet printing most, but using the enlarger for the keepers to make larger prints. At least thats my toughts at the moment.

FrankS
11-04-2004, 05:29
I'm about he luckiest guy in the world. I have a darkroom set up in a spare bedroom upstairs in my house beside the bathroom. I ran plumbing through the shared wall and have a large 3 by 5" darkroom sink. There is a work table beside the sink that holds the trays when I'm developing. (The washing tray is in the sink.) On the other side I've built storage cabinets where my 4by5 Besseler and 6by6 Durst enlargers sit. Dozens of cameras are stored on shelves and in the room's closet with built-in shelves. I've got string strung zig-zag across the ceiling to hang wet prints. There is some household storage in the room as well but still, it's pretty ideal. A darkroom, two healthy kids, an attractive wife, and 2 vintage BMW motorcycles in the garage - I'm one lucky guy!

GermanB
11-04-2004, 06:00
I don't have a darkroom but I develop my own B&W film in an auxiliary bathroom, for the next year I'm plannig to get an enlarger and setup a small darkroom when I move to my new apartment.

Film dino
11-04-2004, 06:46
Used a club (remember those?) darkroom years ago; then processed my own Plus-X/ Tri-X & sometimes slide film at home but didn't do any printing.
Now I get the lab to process the & get the negs/positives back in an uncut roll, for scanning. Need to get a decent printer for digital output & learn how to make decent prints!

Rodinal Addict
11-04-2004, 10:09
I used to have a setup in college, actually sold some B&W prints, and did work for an Opthalmologist, developed shots of the eye from his fundus camera. Then along came four kids, (the two oldest in college now), having to make a living, etc. I'm looking for time now to develop some b&w film, then scan and print. The old "soup and scan" method. I greatly value and am inspired by you guys' experience.

MP Guy
11-04-2004, 10:16
I added one moreoption to the list.

Solinar
11-04-2004, 10:41
The classic darkroom is really the hook that has got my interest in photography rolling.

Since the closing of a former darkroom space, I've set up two easy to store kits.

One kit is for processing film, which requires only a bathroom counter to set up. It stores in a styrofoam chest.

For prints, I've built a couple of rolling cabinets. The enlarger and developing trays for prints are set up on different carts that can be wheeled in and out of a large walk-in closet. I switched to Nova slot processors about a year ago and gained some much appreciated space that way.

The dry darkroom beckons as I don't enjoy printing with RA-4 color chemistry at home. At the mininum I want to be able to scan, then format, before having a print made on a Frontier. I still do a little printing with panalure when th exposure is such that I want to burn or dodge portions of an image.

Roman
11-04-2004, 10:56
In my old apartment (shared with 3 students) my darkroom was underneath my bed (OK, it was a high-rise bed standing about 2 m off the ground - somehow you have to use the vertical space in a 3.5 m high room that has not that much floor space...).
Just moved into a new apartment with my girlfriend, and here I want to use the kitchen - got a corner where I can set up the enlarger permanently, and I guess it is much more convenient than always having to carry your prints to the bathromm for the final wash...
BTW, darkroom-work for me is at leats 50% of the fun in photography!

Roman

Kin Lau
11-04-2004, 11:06
It's not quite "rarely" for me, but "frequently" isn't right either. I develop own BW, and have mostly scanned it so far. Then once in a while, closer to rarely than frequently, I setup my "suitcase" enlarger in the bathroom and do some _real_ darkroom work. I also have a 6x6 enlarger, but I haven't even gotten around to shooting some 120 in BW yet (1/2 way thru a roll in my Moskva 5).

Honu-Hugger
11-04-2004, 11:06
I would have split my vote between "rarely" and "frequently," but then after deciding not to kid myself "rarely" became the honest answer with "frequently" being the fantasy. Along with my own setup now my Dad is threatening to give me his darkroom gear -- how do I refuse and yet where do I put it?

D2

24x30
11-04-2004, 12:35
for me, the new option is the same, than having no classic darkroom. I asked especially for classic, because I expect, that everybody in this forum will have a digital 'darkroom' at home/work.

The numbers so far, are like I expected them to be.

/rudi

24x30
11-04-2004, 12:45
there is no need to be exact at the 'frequency'. The difference in my opinion is, to use it sometimes, and the number is getting smaller (direction digital darkroom). I made my cross at frequently, because I do between 1 and 8 Sessions per month.

Maybe I should have given a better description ... but my english is not good enough for extensive conversation, sorry.

I want just hear from you that my darkroom and I are not exotic ;-). (just a joke, no diskussions about analog vs. digital, please.)

/rudi

CleverName
11-04-2004, 16:05
I just started learning how to make my own prints. Once the class is over I won't have access to the darkroom unless I take another class. (which I probably will). I plan on doing my own developing as soon as my film tank arrives. I was inspired by everyone here who said it's real easy.

Honu-Hugger
11-04-2004, 22:03
Rudi,
I think you did a great job on the poll and the questions were fine. I have heard from photographers that hate the smell of the chemicals and in short almost everything about the "classic" darkroom -- they love having the digital choice. I am just the opposite: I love the slower pace, the process of the development, the chemicals and every aspect of it. However, with PhotoShop getting better and better and with printer quality improving as it has, it is difficult for me to justify the time it takes in the "real" darkroom as often as I would like. Thank you for taking the time to put this together, the results are interesting.

D2

g0tr00t
11-05-2004, 21:26
Durst M301 in my spare bathroom. Love it. Nice cramped quarters, no vents and a toilet. What more can one ask for.... :p

jlw
11-07-2004, 19:32
My 'classic' darkroom is in a utility closet, all set up and ready to go. However, I usually wind up spending most of the time I can devote to photography to working with digital images instead.

This seems fine until I compare the prints I make now on my state-of-the-art Epson R800 printer to the ones I used to make in my modestly equipped 'wet' darkroom. The 'wet' prints are so much better that it makes me sick. I'd chuck digital in a heartbeat if it weren't for the fact that I do most of my photography for other people, and those people like the convenience and low upfront cost of digital shots.

HBC
11-07-2004, 19:47
I have aset up in my spare bathroom. A c-700 omega wich will print up to 6x7 negs, for my 4x5 I can always set up a Bessler 45 mxr a lot bigger,I also develop all of my b&w negs much cheaper and faster results. I do scan my negs and work them in photoshopm but try to stick to the traditional darkroom techniques, dodge and burn, contrast control etc.

That Guy
11-08-2004, 14:52
At one time I wanted to build a wet darkroom in my basement. I even have a spot to make one. I learned the art (back in the day) in high school and loved every part of it. There's a certain dark magic (no pun intended) to an optically enlarged print.

But in the last 6 months or so, I've started leaning toward a digital darkroom. In part, I feel like I'm giving up a dream. But on the other hand I feel a digital darkroom better suits my lifestyle.

Stu :)
11-10-2004, 03:13
I have wet dark room and love it. Nothing like the smell of Ilfofix after dinner.

Out of curiousity, anybody here put their enlarging lenses on a 39mm LTM body and shoot a couple of frames to see what happens?...

Stu :)

Doug
11-10-2004, 12:24
Stu, I have not done quite that, but I have used 50 and 80mm enlarging lenses on a bellows for macro shots.

And that reminds me that I've done the reverse! I wanted to make big enlargements from half-frame negs and needed an enlarging lens with shorter focal length than 50mm.

The only shorter lens I had was an early 35mm Summicron, so I set it to f/8 and placed in on a spare lens-board in the enlarger. I don't know that this infused the enlargements with Leica qualities, but it seemed to work well!

rick oleson
11-10-2004, 21:15
gnus flash!

i just got my darkroom back up and running, and made some prints tonight! to give you an idea of how long it's been, one roll was shot in January 2000 and had never been printed before....

this is SO much neater than the scanner and key clicks......

:)=

digitalox
11-10-2004, 21:39
Post some results for us Rick!

rick oleson
11-11-2004, 08:07
ummm... i'm not sure how to do that. so here are links to some:

http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/self-praktisix.JPG
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/gcstation-leica3a.JPG
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/flag-pentacon6.JPG
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/church-nyc-leica3a.JPG
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/chrysler2-leica3a.JPG
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/chrysler1-leica3a.JPG
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/bowl-praktisix.JPG
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/000/arrows-nikonF.JPG

:)=

digitalox
11-11-2004, 10:24
Nice images Rick.

nikon_sam
12-10-2004, 19:52
I still have a B&W Darkroom...in the downstairs bathroom...actually it's set up right now. I bought my enlarger back in the early 80's and it still works and looks like new. (I'm the only one who uses it.) I am a control freak when it comes to printing my B&W stuff. Can I write it off as therapy??!!

Solinar
12-10-2004, 20:08
Thanks for the postings. For me at least, it is much more rewarding than scanning and key clicks.

canonetc
02-22-2005, 10:39
I lived in a single apartment for four years and after I bought a Beseler 67 enlager to accompany my 35mm enlarger, I stopped eating at home. The only place for the Bes67 was on the stove. I was so obsessed with printing that eating at home took last place. Due to inexperience, I ended up getting ill from poor ventilation. and probably a McD's diet...! Then I moved into a 1-bedroom and vowed to have not only light, but a kichen I could cook food in. Sounds good, huh? I built frames around the windows and back door to insert removable black drape, and rigged up a bathroom ceiling van (with the air vent hose running to the window screen and surrounded by black fabric) beneath a cabinet that would sit directly over my chemical trays and suck the vapors out the window. The larger kitchen allowed plenty of space for both enlargers against a wall (and on top of cabinets which hold paper and finished prints). I still love processing film and printing. I bought a small daylight-balanced light board that can hold 4x5 or 6x9 negatives. I use this, rarely, to scan negs using my flatbed. Results are mediocre compared with scanning a finished 8x10 matte RC print. Overall, if you have a darkroom with good ventilation, you are lucky. I've also found that by processing my own film, I do not get the dirt, hairs and scractches that always seem to accompany ANY black-and-white film I send out to a lab. They just don't have the time to give the right care to film. With a darkroom, your work is not at the mercy of someone else. The digital darkroom is okay, of course, but nothing compares to watching your image rise from the paper beneath a red light. And you did it all by hand.

Chris
canonetc

nikon_sam
02-22-2005, 11:09
I too have a darkroom that I set up in the downstair's bathroom...it's not a permanent fixture but can be ready in about 1/2 hour. Lately, I've been shooting alot of B&W film for me. I have had this equipment, bought it new, since the early 80's. The enlarger still looks and works as new, since I am the only one who uses it.
I love working in the darkroom...it helps with film exposure and development to see what the negative will do in there.
Going back to the basics can really help your photographic skills and will get you in touch with your current camera du jour.

I would love to own a scanner some day but I don't believe it would replace my Darkroom.

Lou Iaquinto
02-22-2005, 12:15
Hi,

I finally set up my darkroom gear late last year after having it in storage for about twenty years. I've converted the laundry and it works well.

I thought I do a course so I signed up for two darkroom courses at local colleges in the past few months and both courses were cancelled do to lack of interest.

I'll keep trying.

Lou

peter_n
02-22-2005, 14:02
Well I want a choice added to the poll: don't have one now but planning to build one.

I bought an enlarger and an enlarging lens this past month. :)

Solinar
02-22-2005, 14:20
I signed up for two darkroom courses at local colleges in the past few months and both courses were cancelled do to lack of interest

Lou

I set up a small darkroom in the walk-in closet of my small 1 bedroom apartment after the public darkroom that I was using was closed due to a lack of interest.

Lucky for me, the walk-in closet is adjacent to a bathroom with a large counter space. I can be up and running in about 30 minutes.

Two things, I get more work done and getting the darkroom has led to a return to medium format.

doubs43
02-22-2005, 17:31
Actually, I have all of the equipment to set up a darkroom but have neither the space nor the intention of doing so. A scanner does just fine so all I have to do is develope my negatives so I can scan them.

Walker

o0dano0o
02-22-2005, 17:36
I'm president of the photo club at my school, so I have free access to a real darkroom.

At home over breaks I usually dev only. Have an enlarger though, just no running water, or decent drying method.

Not sure what I am going to do when I start work though.

jrong
06-20-2005, 04:53
A bit of a toughie answering this one. I develop all my own B+W film, and only occasionally shoot colour slides and prints.... I tend not to use the darkroom at all because I rarely make prints of my B+W work, because of space issues. I do have a darkroom at my disposal, at my local camera club, but rarely find time to use it to print anything. I scan my negs in order to view and assess them. However, I'd still consider myself a diehard 100% film user.

Jin

stevie_b_racing
06-20-2005, 05:16
I'm on my second darkroom having built one in the loft / attic of our previous house, we then moved - so I've built a 'temporary' one in the loft / attic again. I'm planning for it to last at least five years to give me chance to set up something better. There's no water, so I do some fetching and carrying up the ladder. Works ok for me. I use an MPP enlarger that handles 35mm and 6x6. It's ancient but effective. I work very manually - only recently have I bought an enlarger timer! (prior to that I used an in-line switch and a stop watch). I have scanned a few prints, but that's a digital as I'm intending to go.

jorisbens
06-20-2005, 05:29
I don't have a darkroom yet, but I'm trying to find a manner to get one. I really want a darkroom, but I don't seem to find a good place in our house :bang:

Joris Bens :cool:

leon
06-20-2005, 05:51
I had a darkroom, went digital (neg scanning and inkjet output) had completely frustrating and unhelpful time so went back to analogue. I now have my own permanent darkroom with water, sink, heating etc and use it at least 2 times per week.

JOE1951
06-20-2005, 06:57
Hello

I bought a hardly used Beseler 23CII with Dichroic head w/ Nikkor 60 lens for $50.00 CDN last summer. Found a small table/cabinet with wheels on the street that someone was throwing out, and now keep all my trays, easels, etc. with the enlarger on top. I just wheel everything into the bathroom or kitchen or anywhere else I can make light tight and be set up in 15 mins!

I also own epson scanner and printer.

I prefer the darkroom and processing film, but like keeping up to date with the digital stuff!

titrisol
06-20-2005, 07:25
Since I moved to a suburban townhome my darkroom is shared with the kids bathroom so setup is a pain and have to work late at night.... so my darkroom time has become precious commodity.

I have the enlarger in a cart with casters (normally parked in the bedroom) and sometimes I even use it to analyze negatives witht the grain magnifier while my wife sleeps.
I put all the chemicals in a rack over the tub and the hand-held-shower hose is my running water.

The mirrors are covered with a piece of cloth, safelight is a plug-in type and I have a "spring" type clothes line over the tub as well.
Toning is carried out outside with daylight ;)

AndersG
06-20-2005, 07:32
I recently started with B/W processing and printing. I don't have a permanent darkroom but use my small (approx. 2x3 meters) bathroom: A small table in the shower compartment for the enlarger and a kitchen locker shelf on top of the sink for the processing trays.

julianphotoart
06-20-2005, 16:20
Is this a forum to persuade people to build/use/rent/try a darkroom? If so, that would be dangerous because I'd never shut up. I have a full darkroom that I built in the basement. I have a Beseler 23III enlarger with a colour head. I print B&W and use tray processing. I print Cibachrome (another topic it's dangerous to get me started on) from both 35mm and MF transparencies and use a Jobo drum. With my basement height the biggest prints I can make are 11x14 though with a higher ceiling the enlarger could get to 16x20. I have a 50mm Taylor Taylor & Hobson, 50mm Schneider, 80mm Schneider and 105mm Nikkor. I process all size medium format since I have a variety of MF cameras from 6x4.5 to 6x9. The enlarger goes to 6x9. I use Delta 100 or Acros and use Microdol-X. Used to use Technical Pan and Technidol. Nothing like fine grain. I also obviously do 35mm since why else would I be in RFF. Creating good B&W prints never stops being a joy.

TPPhotog
06-20-2005, 16:31
I used to use the kitchen but my wife moaned that she couldn't get in to make a drink, so now I use the bathroom. She can now make all the drinks she wants if .......... :D

Doug
06-20-2005, 17:00
My first darkroom was in a studio apartment with a Murphy bed. This type of bed tilts up from the foot and then swings on hinges into a walk-in closet. I left the bed down, and found an opaque rubberized cloth curtain to cover the big doorway for the bed. I put my Beseler 23C on a dresser at one end of the closet, and the developing trays on the enlarger's big cardboard box across the bed opening. There was still the smaller door opposite the enlarger, leading to the entryway, across which was the bathroom. That was the nearest access to running water, so print & film washing was done there.

When I moved from there, I didn't have a darkroom again for about 10 years. I now have occupied a lavatory off the bedroom, and it's not much bigger than the first one!

solane
06-20-2005, 20:43
i have an enlarger i bought at a flea market but i've never been able to set it up. i have big tupperware full of trays and tongs, timers and tanks... and alas, they just sit there.

when i was in college, i was the darkroom monitor so i had keys to the school darkroom and often kept the darkroom open all night just so i could work. after having all that space, its been hard to convince myself i would enjoy the experience of a using a darkroom as much while precariously balancing my enlarger on the edge of my bathtub with black plastic hanging over the windows and the prints hanging from the shower curtain.

i so miss developing my own film and printing my own negatives that i may give in soon. i'm already thinking about processing my own film and have been lurking in the darkroom forum picking up tips.

trix
07-03-2005, 00:29
I returned to the wet darkroom last November after six years of scanning and inkjet-printing. I spend at least two evenings a week i the darkroom.

SolaresLarrave
07-03-2005, 04:22
I simply wish I had one... :(

rover
07-03-2005, 04:46
Remembering back to my high school days when I had one, it was great fun Francisco, easy to get good results, but a lot of work to master (I never did). You can skip a lot of the set up and maintenance work necessary with a wet darkroom and get very good or the same results with a scanner and Photoshop. I hate to say it, but I don't make prints anymore, I view my images on my computer.

All that said, in a perfect world I would like to have a wet darkroom too. Scan to identify what I captured and to choose the images to print.

Kevin
07-04-2005, 03:26
I do both darkroom and digital printing. Digital prints are great for small handouts that I make spontaneously before meeting up with friends.

In the early 90s I invested in a 20x24 inch vertical archival washer. I also brought over a huge metal mounting press from the States and had a 1500 watt transformer made for it. Dry-mounting prints is a lot of fun and brings out the best in baryt papers.

I am looking for a color 4x5 enlarger with a glass carrier for my 6x9 negatives, something that wont give me any newton rings. I hate newton rings. Any tips?

24x30
07-04-2005, 05:34
I am looking for a color 4x5 enlarger with a glass carrier for my 6x9 negatives, something that wont give me any newton rings. I hate newton rings. Any tips?
How about Durst Laborators? The 138/139 are often for less than 200 Euro (B&W) available, or less than 400 Euro (Color) for the color version. A well known auction platform should be your friend :-).

/rudi

BJ Bignell
07-04-2005, 07:34
I have one, but can't use it because I have no space (OK, I have some space) and I'm leaving in less than 60 days for a nice long vacation... Everything goes into storage for now.

Kevin
07-04-2005, 08:31
How about Durst Laborators? The 138/139 are often for less than 200 Euro (B&W) available, or less than 400 Euro (Color) for the color version. A well known auction platform should be your friend :-).

/rudi


Danke Rudi !

dostacos
09-04-2005, 18:11
you missed a choice.

Don't have one now BUT plan on getting one again soon... :D

desmo
01-24-2006, 23:49
Canon digital with computer and epson 4990 scanner/epson R1800 printer all for pro shooting only.
for my art i love the darkroom and have a Durst M805 with Multigrade and Colour Heads plus a Durst Laborator 138S B&W plus colour head for 5x4. I also have a giant VG1 autofocus aerial enlarger that will take up to 9"x9" negs. Great for the glass plate and old negs I've collected over the years.

jaap
01-25-2006, 00:27
I own a darkroom for nearly my whole live! The quality you get from a good b&w (fibre) print
is still incredable. IMO there's nothing that beats a traditional print. My enalrger is a durst color 607. It gives a beatiful soft light.

matti
01-25-2006, 00:30
Planning on fixing one up!

sf
01-25-2006, 02:11
I 'have' one. Actually, I just set up my little Lucky Enlarger, three bins, a drying rack, and a rinsing tub in the bathroom, tape off the cracks for total darkness, and have a half hand made redlight (half because some of the red came off and I had to use nail polish - no explosions or shatterings yet). I rarely use it becuase i go in, print like 30 prints over several hours immersion, and that's it for a while. I only print, wet style, maybe one print out of 2 or 3 rolls. The rest are scanned. I just don't like the mess, especially because i live in a house with other people and tying up the bathroom is a big pain.

But, from time to time, it must be done.

Jeff_S
01-25-2006, 04:19
I have had a small darkroom set up for the last 10 years or so. It is basically in a cabinet (which I built primarily for this) in our basement bathroom. I only have to set the trays out and fill them and am ready to go.

Lately, I seem to use it much more to develop film rather than print. As a matter of fact I have had several rolls which need contacts waiting for several weeks now. It is just too easy to look at the negatives, find a good prospect and scan it. But the previous posters are correct - nothing compares to a well made fiber print!

Jeff

AGN
01-25-2006, 05:40
Yup, five darkrooms in the last 52 years. Still at it. The occasional print, but mostly film development and scanning. My best fibre prints were made twenty years ago.

herb10660
02-18-2006, 16:22
I have a spare room behind the garage 10ft by 6ft. Managed to squeeze a Devere 504 in there that I bought from the usual auction site. No sink so any FB paper has to be carried through the garden and upstairs to the bathroom. The enlarger can take anything from 35mm up to 5x4 and is practically bullet proof. I only have a cheap flat bed scanner, so anything I shoot for scanning has to be printed traditionally first which of course is fine by me.

olmanwompa
02-18-2006, 17:20
set up my darkroom about a year ago in a garage conversion. dedicated a 8x13 foot space, with room for 7 foot sink and space for 2 enlargers. picked up most equipment used, cheap, including a free omega d2v enlarger. thought this would be a transitional enlarger, as I was looking for a d5, but turns out to be great.

can't wait to have time to get in and print-usually 1-2 times per week. truly lucky to have the space and some free time to print.

Fred
02-23-2006, 14:16
I use a kitchen, turns into a darkroom by using velcro blackout.

Meopta Opemus 6 Color enlarger (35mm and MF), Nova slot 16 x 12 monochrome print processor, Nova slot 8 x 10 Trimate thermostat processor for color prints, yes I still do em the old way just not that often. Can't be bettered in my eyes. Use a big toast rack for drying prints on the drainer.

je2a3
02-23-2006, 20:40
I black out my bathroom once or twice a month [does that qualify as frequent?] to do contact prints or enlarge a a couple of worthy negatives using a compact Durst M301 enlarger and Rodagon or Nikkor 50/2.8 lens. Developing B&W film is done in the kitchen with a changing bag.

Joseph

That Guy
02-23-2006, 21:15
Okay, so I have to update my original post (from page 2). The Beseler 67 got here last autumn. I got a suhweeet deal on a Nikon enlarging lens. The Jobo CPE-2 arrived today. I have a few more odds and ends to work out, like enlarger bulbs, chemistry, and a good work surface. I still need an easel. But it looks like it's actually going to happen.

ErnestoJL
02-23-2006, 21:44
I had a very good trad. wet darkroom many years ago (back in the 70s), but it was dismantled during the 80s as my two friends left photography, and at that time everything was sold. Later, during 1984 I began buying all what I needed to have it again, but marriage, divorce, moving two times, another marriage, and a second divorce delayed the decision to rebuild it many times.
Actually I have trays, dev. tank, all the accesories, a digital timer, and an old Nicro Jr. enlarger (locally made about 50 yrs. ago) with a Schneider Componar 4.5/50. The enlarger had allways a bad illumination system so I have plans to modify it, with better lamps and optics. I was thinking about the reflex illum. system developed in the 70s by Durst but I havent yet decided which is best suited for me.
Actually, living alone with my dog, then I have plenty of room and time to start over, and its what Im going to do within this year.
Even thinking about buying a film scanner, which is undoubtedly a fast and valuable tool, I still recall the magic of seeing the picture slowly forming in the developing tray.
This is something no digital darkroom would ever bring, and the main reason why I will start again developing film and making my own copies.

Ernesto

al1966
02-27-2006, 01:32
Afraid I had to vote have one dont use it. My ex wife still has my enlarger, this is after 3 years. One day I hope

Andy K
02-27-2006, 01:45
I convert my kitchen whenever I wish to do any enlarging. Usually two or three times a week. I posted some crappy phonecam shots of it in this thread (http://rangefinderforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=18979). It serves me well and is handy for drinks etc. while working.

jonasv
02-27-2006, 03:09
currently looking for a better enlarger to use my darkroom more often. If I want to print at f/8-f/11 it's about 15-20 minutes exposure I need. 30-minutes to make a test strip... Insane!

For the moment I thus scan my negatives and use my darkroom only for film developing, but I'm looking to start printing again soon enough.

Andy K
02-27-2006, 03:15
currently looking for a better enlarger to use my darkroom more often. If I want to print at f/8-f/11 it's about 15-20 minutes exposure I need. 30-minutes to make a test strip... Insane!

How large are you enlarging? And how much filtration are you using? That's a hell of a long time to expose! Have you tried changing the bulb?

jonasv
02-27-2006, 03:51
How large are you enlarging? And how much filtration are you using? That's a hell of a long time to expose! Have you tried changing the bulb?

8x10, some filtration (say 40M) and a recently replaced bulb ~ 15 minutes with a correctly exposed negative.

If I want quick prints I have to print wide-open f/2.8 and without filtration, but of course the results are less than stunning. What I usually do (did, untill some weeks ago, when I got tired of it and decided to look out for a new enlarger) is make testprints wide open then calculate exposure at f/8 for the final image - this saves some time.

I was thinking of getting a Durst M605 or M670, but haven't really looked into it yet.

Andy K
02-27-2006, 03:59
Well, as you say, something is not right. I enlarge most of my photographs at f/11 or f/16. The longest exposure I have had to date was about 58 seconds.

Another thing to check would be the power supply. That could affect the output of the lamp. Also if your enlarger is similar to mine, I have a Meopta Opemus 6 Color enlarger, it will also have a ND dial, if that is engaged it will affect the light intensity and lengthen the exposure time.

Jeff_S
02-27-2006, 05:21
I have a small darkroom setup in a basement bathroom. My enlarger (Omega B22) and the chemistry fits into a cabinet I built on one side and I put my trays on the vanity/sinkbase on the other. Works well with minimum time to set up and clean up.

Jeff

David Goldfarb
02-27-2006, 05:26
8x10, some filtration (say 40M) and a recently replaced bulb ~ 15 minutes with a correctly exposed negative.

If I want quick prints I have to print wide-open f/2.8 and without filtration, but of course the results are less than stunning. What I usually do (did, untill some weeks ago, when I got tired of it and decided to look out for a new enlarger) is make testprints wide open then calculate exposure at f/8 for the final image - this saves some time.

I was thinking of getting a Durst M605 or M670, but haven't really looked into it yet.

That is a bit much, but are you sure the problem is the enlarger? Your negs could be overexposed and/or overdeveloped, or possibly you are using a contact speed paper or your paper developer could be bad or the wrong dilution. What film and developer, EI, time and temperature are you using, and what paper and developer are you using?

You may also have the wrong bulb in your enlarger. What kind of enlarger is it, and what kind of head does it have?

GermanB
02-27-2006, 05:39
I use a spare bathroom to set up my darkroom only for contacts and prints (35mm and 6x6), to develop rolls use a changing bag. I think this year I will set up a permanent darkroom but I have to negotiate with the wife... :)

jonasv
02-27-2006, 06:13
That is a bit much, but are you sure the problem is the enlarger? Your negs could be overexposed and/or overdeveloped, or possibly you are using a contact speed paper or your paper developer could be bad or the wrong dilution. What film and developer, EI, time and temperature are you using, and what paper and developer are you using?

You may also have the wrong bulb in your enlarger. What kind of enlarger is it, and what kind of head does it have?

Yep, it definitely is the enlarger. I have printed the exact same negatives with my own paper and chemicals at other places and exposure times were less than 1/10th of those on my own enlarger. It's a Durst C35, replaced the bulb, didn't fix anything. There is no ND filter. I have both the head for 6x6 and 35mm negatives, both give extremely long times. Otherwise there is nothing wrong with the quality of the prints.

I wouldn't mind as much if it was fine-art photography I'm doing, but unfortunately photojournalism is my thing - time matters!

pesphoto
02-27-2006, 06:20
I built my darkroom in our basement. We rent, but the landlords are really good about it. When we move I can take it down and bring it with us. So its not totally permanent, but works. I use an Omega B22 enlarger.
Here are a few pics on my website (http://www.paulshelaskyphotography.com/Pages/misc/Darkroom.html)

pesphoto
02-27-2006, 06:21
Lets try this link again. Not sure why it didnt work first time. er, computers!
oops, just realized i used email hyperlink by mistake the first time.

DARKROOM PICS (http://www.paulshelaskyphotography.com/Pages/misc/Darkroom.html)

David Goldfarb
02-27-2006, 09:50
Yep, it definitely is the enlarger. I have printed the exact same negatives with my own paper and chemicals at other places and exposure times were less than 1/10th of those on my own enlarger. It's a Durst C35, replaced the bulb, didn't fix anything. There is no ND filter. I have both the head for 6x6 and 35mm negatives, both give extremely long times. Otherwise there is nothing wrong with the quality of the prints.

I wouldn't mind as much if it was fine-art photography I'm doing, but unfortunately photojournalism is my thing - time matters!

That is really strange. Obviously lots of people use the Durst C35 and don't have unreasonably long exposures, and Durst makes pretty good enlargers. Are you sure you've got the correct bulb?

jonasv
02-27-2006, 10:22
Hrm, thanks for that! I will try another bulb... not sure what a dichloric lamp is though, but I'll see if I can find a bulb that fits and is a bit stronger. I didn't think it was possible to just put a stronger bulb in an enlarger - I thought they were specifically designed for one bulb's light output.
Thanks!

amateriat
03-01-2006, 19:10
My situation is "all dressed up and no place to go"...I have just about all the necessary ingredients for a wet darkroom (revolving around an Omega B22 with 50mm f/w.8 EL-Nikkor), but not even a semi-okay spece to set it up in. I've been thinking about a shot-glass-sized system based on one of the better small Durst enlargers and limiting my output to 8x10 and smaller.

But, truth be told, I've got my digital scanning and printing setup pretty much down cold, and this is where the action has been for some years now with me - not because I've willingly eschewed the wet darkroom as much as my conviction that if I can't have much more than a half-assed wet-printing setup (and only set up part-time at that!), I'd be better off just sticking to the wet part for handling the film and doing the digital dance for the rest (and working damned hard to get that part as right as funds will allow...happily, I'm getting mroe than credible results now). The one area where I won't compromise is with my cameras - virtually all the dSLRs I've actually shot with have eventually brought out quite hostile feelings from me (which usually takes some work!), and that alone has been reason enough to stick with film.


- Barrett

ChrisPlatt
04-11-2006, 12:45
Nice compact dichroic enlarger - FREE!
Pickup only in Oceanside Long Island NY
Send PM if interested.

visiondr
04-17-2006, 10:59
I built my darkroom in our basement. We rent, but the landlords are really good about it. When we move I can take it down and bring it with us. So its not totally permanent, but works. I use an Omega B22 enlarger.
Here are a few pics on my website (http://www.paulshelaskyphotography.com/Pages/misc/Darkroom.html)

Paul,

The shots of your darkroom show a nice, compact set up. Do you have a water supply? Can one establish a dark room for enlarging only without water and drain? I can develop film at our basement utility sink. But there's no practical way to set up a wet darkroom in my house.

Doug
04-17-2006, 18:37
Can one establish a dark room for enlarging only without water and drain? I can develop film at our basement utility sink. But there's no practical way to set up a wet darkroom in my house.One can make do... My first darkroom was a walk-in closet, across the hall from the bath. The inner end of the closet was my "dry side", and closer to the door along one side was a support for three trays. I mixed chemicals in the bath and brought the trays into the closet. Then, after securing all light-sensitive materials, I opened the closet door and carried my print(s) from the fixer tray across the hall to the washing tray in the tub. Maybe you can arrange something similar...

jk251
11-20-2007, 23:20
I develop the film in my bathroom, six rolls of 135 films a time. Then send films to professional studio for printing if necessary.

Haigh
11-21-2007, 00:17
I have half a laundry a home which does as a darkroom. I also have a mid level scanner which is OK for posting on the web. If I want prints it's definitely darkroom.

Gary Haigh