Printing MF with a Bessler 23c?

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endneu913

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What must I do to make my old school 23c work for printing 120 film/ 4x5 or 6x7 size negs? When I use the carrier for 4.25x4.25 film on my Omega b-22 OR besler 23c, the image on the baseboard comes out circular. I assume I need a larger enlarging lens, but what else? Im looking at picking up a RB67 or a pentax 67, but i wanna print NOW.... :smile:

Im just getting back into printing/ developing and alike, so forgive my goofy questions. Thanks!

- Grae
 

mudman

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75mm or 105mm lens, 6x7 or 6x9 carrier for Bessler 23 (10 bucks or so on ebay).
 

chriscrawfordphoto

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As mudman wrote, you need the right focal length lens. 50mm enlarging lenses cover a 35mm frame, you need 75 or 80mm for 6x6 and 90mm for 6x7. The 32cII cannot print 4x5, it only takes film up to 6x9.

The other thing you must do is adjust the position of the condensors. There is a knob on the side of the lamphouse that raises and lowers the condensors. A pointer rides along a scale marked for different film sizes....set it to the size film you intend to use.
 

nworth

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The carriers for modern Bessler 23 series enlargers are the same as for the older models. You can probably find a used 6X7 carrier on ebay, or you can buy a new one, Parts and accessories for the 23 are still made.
 
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endneu913

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So... fooled around a little bit. I set the condensor knob to 2.25x2.5 and stole my 75mm omegar lens from the omega enlarger. That seemed to get a lot closer, but the circle was still cropping the tips of my negative. Still need that larger lens i guess. I could adjust the condenser even lower, past the size i want, but it gave a weird blue colored half moon shaped glare on the base board.

Interesting side note, the Omega b-22 enlarger came with a 50mm, and a 75mm, and 35mm and 4.25x4.25 negative carrier, so it would seem that the kit was intended to print both sizes, but as far as i can tell, the omega enlarger had no such condenser height adjustments. I think its a fixed height.
 

MattKing

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I am a little confused about a couple of references in your posts.

Twice you refer to "4.25x4.25" negatives. If that is indeed a reference to negatives that are 4 1/4 inches on a side, than those negatives are too large to use in either the 23CII or the Omega B22.

Have you checked to make sure that the lamp housing hasn't been dislodged from it's correct position?

Here is a link to the manual for an older version of this enlarger:

http://www.darkroompro.com/pdf/enlargers/beseler_23c1.pdf

IIRC, the Omega B22 came with one set of condensers, but additional, auxiliary condensers were available to allow you to change formats. It may be that your B-22 is actually set up for 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 - 35mm will work as well with that setup (just with longer printing times).

Matt
 

bdial

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The standard limit for a 23C is 6x7 or perhaps 6x9. Some people have modified them to take 4x5 however.
Instead of 4.25x4.25 I think you mean 2.25x2.25 or 6x6 cm, well within a 23C's capablility, with the proper adjustments and lens.
 

Ira Rush

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The other thing you must do is adjust the position of the condensors.......


Grae,

Are you using condensors, or is there something inside the lamphouse that looks like the attached "jpg".

If you do have something that looks like that, then you are using "diffusion mode" The attached pix is a diffusion unit that replaced the condensors. The pix is a diffuser for medium format (both the top and bottom of the unit have a large frosted cover).

If you are getting a circular image, it sounds like the diffusor is for 35mm, one side will have a large white cover and the other side will have a much smaller circular white opal cover.

The model that I have is the 23CII XL and I switch back and forth between diffusion and condensors. If you have the older 23C "I think" you could likewise switch between them.

My suggestion, look inside the lamphouse, (push down the upper bellows and disengage it from the condensor assembly) and see if you have condensors or diffusers.

Hope this helps
 

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endneu913

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Thanks for all the input guys ( or gals)

All of the above is true... I confused myself a bit with metric vs standard, I DID mean 2.25x2.25. So that cleared up, I found that on my smaller omega enlarger there is in fact a removable condenser that was meant for 35mm printing. I removed it and bingo, the square 2.25x neg looks great ( with the 75mm lens)

Now, regarding the 23C, and bear with me, im a little slow on the uptake; I was wrong when I said it was cropping the corners, because I was setting the knob rod at the desired measurement, not the marker/triangle. So, duh, i figured that part out.

Lastly, please school me in sizes. 120 film is a film size, but depending on the camera you use, you can get different image sizes, aka 2.25x2.25" ect; now, what I need clarification on is what all the other sizes mean, for instance a pentax 67 shoots 6x7 format, but its not 6x7 inches, so is it cm, right? I guess i just need basic tutorial in sizes and their different reference names.
 
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bdial

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Yes, it's cm.
There are numerous formats that can go onto 120 film, and the most common designations for the sizes are metric, though there are some inch equivalents. For example,

6 x 4.5 cm aka 645 16 exposures on 120
6 x 6 or 2.25x2.25 inches 12 exposures
6 x 7 10 exposures
6x9 or 2.25 x 3.25 8 exposures
Plus some panoramic formats that are wider than 6x9

These are the "nominal" sizes, the actual measurments are usually slightly smaller.

There is also 220 film, which is double the length of 120, and only has backing paper at the lead and tail ends, but not all cameras that use 120 can use it. Somewhat closely related is 620 which was a Kodak designation, it is the same width and length as 120, but uses a smaller spool. You can re-spool 120 on to 620 spools to use in cameras (mostly Kodak models) that can only use 620.
 
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endneu913

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Well, im finally getting around to shopping for a good 80mm lens fro printing. What i have currently is a EL-OMEGAR 3.5 75mm. I assume this wont yield great results. Im looking for any recommendations on what folks use or have used in the past. Im not looking to waste time in the darkroom, and im willing to spend up to $250, but would of course love to spend less. Is there any good way to know from just looking a lens, how many internal lenses is has.. as in 3, 4 or 6 ?
 

MattKing

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For moderate enlargements your EL-OMEGAR 75mm lens may be quite competent, so don't put off printing until you have a better lens.

You may find the section on lenses in this link helpful:

http://www.darkroomsource.net/enlargers.shtml#lens1

I don't know any way of telling how many elements are in a lens just by looking at it, but I do know condition and sample variation can be as or more important than brand name.
 

John Koehrer

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Rodenstock RodaGON, Schneider CompoNON and compoNON-s, Nikkor 80mm/5.6 & longer, Minolta Rokkors, Vivitar VHE lenses(Schneider Componon). Apo anything are usually very good & some large format process/copy lenses too.

Things like Beslar, Omegar, El-Omegar, Omegaron, regular Vivitars, 75mm Nikkor & 50mm/4 Nikkor
and about a thousand other no-name lenses will be three or four element lenses
 

2F/2F

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The 23 in the model name means 2-1/4 by 3-1/4 inch format. This format is notably smaller than 6x9 cm (meaning that 2x3 sheet film will fall through a 6x9 negative carrier unless masked), though the two terms are often used interchangeably. However, the difference is so small that equipment was designed such that you can print either of them on the same enlarger. So, even though your enlarger sez 2x3, you can do anything up to 6x9 cm (or 9x9, I guess, if this format existed). It sounds like the problem is that you need a longer lens. You can use lenses that are made for a larger format to print film that is a smaller format, but the reverse is not true.
 
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ic-racer

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Looks like all your questions have been addressed. Welcome to projection printing and REAL analog photography! :smile:
 
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endneu913

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Thanks guys. What i DO have to wait for before i even try out the 75mm i have is a 6x7 neg carrier. Been watching on ebay... All i have are 35mm carriers
 

Dennis S

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You can make one out of Mat board which work well enough to start with. I am still using that until I find one for my 6 X 4.5 negatives that is not ridiculously priced. Also I used a larger neg carrier with duct tape on the side to cut the size down
 
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