Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1999/01/13

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Subject: [Leica] Re: Enlarger Question
From: Dave King <>
Date: Wed, 13 Jan 1999 12:28:07 -0500


If you're going to use a 4x5 enlg to print 35, two suggestions: if you do
get a glass carrier the top glass should be anti-Newton ring type, and
second, get a Zig-Align, or some other precision alignment device (Salthill
Trilinear, Versa Dynamics laser), because you are absolutely correct,
bigger enlargers generally aren't optimal for smaller negatives unless
set-up very carefully. You may find that you don't need the glass after all
(cleaning is a big PITA) if you pre-heat the neg till it pops before
focusing and exposing.

I have an old Valoy that I was lucky enough to find in excellent condition,
and with a few mods, it's excellent! I made a bigger base for it and had a
machine shop create an over the condenser 3x3 filter holder. It fits
exactly over the condenser collar with a recessed area for the filts, then
I put a heat absorbing glass on last (think it was from Omega, B-22
maybe?). Multi contrast and color, no problem. Last, I needed the short
spacer that came with an old Leica copy device to get the aperature ring of
the lens I use (Nikkor 50 2.8) accessable below the focusing collar. Total
investment about $300! And much prefer to my well set-up D2V printing 35mm.
It doesn't *have* to cost an arm and a leg!

Dave King
New York City

"A. Huntley" <> wrote:

>Guess I should explain where my original question was coming
>from...I have an old Beseler MX 4x5 enlarger that I've been using
>to print my Leica M 35mm negs. <SNIP> but smaller negs seem
>to benefit most from precision equipment.
>The V35 attracts me mainly because I know that a Leitz enlarger would
>certainly be built to exacting standards, ain't cheap, and I'm kind
>of partial to my Schneider optics. It's my understanding that only Leitz
>lenses can be used on this enlarger. 
>Best regards,