recommend used enlarger to look for

Discussion in 'Darkroom Developing and Printing' started by Mike Marty, Jul 17, 2003.

  1. Mike Marty

    Mike Marty Guest

    I'd like to keep my eye out for a used enlarger to purchase (or possibly
    new if the price was right). I've been using Beseler Printmaker 35s and
    23CIIs at my local university. I'll likely avoid the former as it is sort
    of flimsy and is limited to 8x10s.

    I'm strictly 35mm B&W only right now. I'll likely make mostly 5x7s and
    8x10s with the occasional 11x14.

    Medium format could be in my future. I doubt I'll make color prints as it
    seems that film scanners and digital printers are the way to go for color...

    Any recommendations? The 23CIIs seem to go for over $300 on eBay. I'm
    strictly an amateur and am not sure I need something that nice... would
    the Printmaker 67 be an advisable choice?

    Mike Marty, Jul 17, 2003
    1. Advertisements

  2. $300 -- Gaaag! Not worth it. (Oooh, I can feel the flames licking at my
    feet already).

    I would look at 4x5 Beselers and Omegas. They go for as little
    as $100 or so. At the low end expect a lot of wear and you may have to
    do a little rebuilding. Really nice ones start at $200.

    Try to get the V version of the Omegas, otherwise you will need a condenser
    set for each lens. Omegas also need lens cones, a different one for each

    Beselers all come with variable condensers and only need lensboards.
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Jul 17, 2003
    1. Advertisements

  3. Leica Focomat.
    Michael Scarpitti, Jul 17, 2003
  4. Mike Marty

    Norman Worth Guest

    Having had one for 30 years, I can testify thst the Beseler 23CII is a very
    reliable, sturdy, and vesatile enlarger. Many are available on the used
    market now in good condition and at excellent prices. New ones are not
    terribly expensive, but lens boards and negative holders are extra. Check
    e-bay, local sources, and magazine ads.
    Norman Worth, Jul 17, 2003
  5. Mike Marty

    CWal871581 Guest

    << Subject: recommend used enlarger to look for
    From: Mike Marty
    Date: Thu, Jul 17, 2003 8:25 AM
    Message-id: <bf6f5r$ef2$>

    Any recommendations? The 23CIIs seem to go for over $300 on eBay. I'm
    strictly an amateur and am not sure I need something that nice... would
    the Printmaker 67 be an advisable choice?

    There are currently three or more 23C's on sale at a local shop (Palo Alto, CA)
    for about $200. Seems eBay is a bit overpriced these days. If you're close to
    a major metro area you could probably do just as well, you'll see what you're
    getting before you buy, and you'll be supporting a local shop. I have a 23C II
    and like it (but you must take the time to shim it into alignment, but once
    it's there-you're done).

    CWal871581, Jul 18, 2003
  6. Mike Marty

    Mark A Guest

    Any recommendations? The 23CIIs seem to go for over $300 on eBay. I'm
    The 67C (discontinued) is good, but the 67 Printmaker has a pitifully weak
    column. There have been quite a few different column designs on the 67, some
    good, some poor.
    Mark A, Jul 18, 2003
  7. One good candidate is a Durst M601. They are indestructible, and can be
    disassembled for easy storage. The head can also be rotated to project
    on the wall for really big enlargements.

    There are a couple listed on EBay. I'd expect them to go for around
    $100 to $120. Perhaps a bit more with a color head.

    Note that the color head is really useful for B&W with variable contrast
    paper, since you don't need a separate set of filters, and can use the
    color filters for contrast control. You need a voltage stabilizer with
    the color head, so make sure any being offered are complete.

    Here's a link to the Ebay search results:

    You might have to chase for a negative carrier for other film sizes, as
    they are no longer made. There are lots available used, if you look
    around for them.

    In looking at past sales, I see someone got a Durst M601 with a color
    head and Nikon lens, plus a full darkroom setup with a color analyzer
    for only $96. A real deal.
    James Robinson, Jul 18, 2003
  8. Mike Marty

    Tom Elliott Guest

    My 2 cents:
    I have an old Omega D-2, bought used when I got out of the USAF in 1961 for
    The only up grade was to the Variable Condenser. I still have all cones and
    all lenses and all negative carriers from 35mm to 4x5 glass and glassless. A
    home brew "Point source" and a glass sandwich which permits me to gang Nine
    35mm negs to print nine frames on 8x10 paper.
    It has been disassembled, a trillion times and reassembled in my many moves
    from California, to NYC and now here in Florida. The sad thing is that
    because of the new technology I have not been in the darkroom since 1992 -
    Hurricane Andrew.
    So I guess you could say get a used Omega 4x5 of any era. That would be IMHO
    the best choice. Watch the garage sales, college campus news/bulletin boards
    and check with B&H in NYC to see was the used ones are going for.
    Have fun,
    Tom Elliott, Jul 18, 2003
  9. Mike Marty

    John Guest

    Frankly I wouldn't bother selling my 23CII for $200. The current new price
    from B&H for the 23CIII enlarger alone is $896.95 and add in the numerous
    accessories one usually sells with the enlarger (I have many more) and you
    quickly top out around $1200. IMO, getting less than 30% of the new price isn't
    worth the effort of listing, selling and shipping. I'd rather donate it to a
    school or some organization. Perhaps this is why you see so few D-5's hitting
    Ebay now.


    John - Photographer & Webmaster -
    A summation of American society after 9/11:
    Never have so many known so much and yet done so little.
    John, Jul 18, 2003
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.