Durst L 1200 Condenser Set-Up

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Walter Glover, Sep 7, 2002.

  1. Walter Glover

    Walter Glover Member

    Sep 7, 2002
    I do not wish to arouse issues of condenser versus diffusion enlargers here. I use both for the unique benefits that each has to offer.

    My concern is that I don't have, and have experienced great difficulty in obtaining, instructions for the set-up procedure for the Durst L 1200 opal globe condenser head. I have preiously fiddled about until the illuminated area on the baseboard 'looked' even — I am sure there is a more precise methodology.

    If anybody can offer the relevant information I would be most thankful.
  2. Skip

    Skip Member

    Sep 7, 2002
    Walter, could you not perhaps use a lightmeter or a color analyzer (if you have one, set to white) to read the variation on the baseboard illumination, iteratively adjusting and moving the meter abt until you've got it fairly even? I admit to not having tried the meter, not sure if its sensitive enough. I have a simple photocell densitometre I made 30 years ago (!) that I use for setting new f-stops or time when I change magnification, which will also do that function.
  3. William Levitt

    William Levitt Member

    Sep 7, 2002
    Nuernberg, G
    I don't have the 1200, but I do have a Durst 138S and here are the condenser set ups for the different film sizes: The curved sided always face each other towards the middle.

    Film size : Lens : Condensers

    24X36: 50mm : 130 over 85

    6X6 : 80mm : 200 over 130

    6,5X9 : 105mm 240 over 130

    9X12 (4X5&quot:wink: 150mm 240 over 200
  4. Ken Owen

    Ken Owen Member

    Sep 25, 2002
    I work for JOBO Fototechnic, the USA distributor for Durst Enlargers, so please consider my comments accordingly.

    With the Durst L 1200 Condenser head, there are three "dimensions" to lamp alignment. You have two of them on the left side of the lamphouse. One knob "focuses" the lamp moving it forward and backward within the lamphouse. The other knob tilts the lens in and out of the central axis of the condenser lenses. The third control is the lamp socket itself. You can move the lamp socket within the socket holder. This enables you extend or retract the lamp again to find the center of the lens axis.

    As one of the other respondants has indicated, use of a light meter or enlarging meter can help you to be more objective in your adjustments. Make sure you have all the condensers in place and the appropriate enlarger lens mounted when you make the measurements. (Please note that the condenser model numbers i.e. Femocon 50, 80 or 151,152, represent the approximate enlarger lens focal length they are designed to work with. Don't try to use a 135 or 150mm enlarging lens with an 80 condenser. You will never avoid severe falloff of illumination.)

    Measure the center of the illumination on the baseboard. Then move the meter out from the center in each direction. Notice which way the light fallof seems to be the worst, and then make adjustments to try and correct it. Once the lamp is centered, by moving its socket and the tilt control knob, then begin "focusing" the lamp. This should be the easiest approach.

    I hope this helps.