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  #1  
Old 17th February 2011, 07:26 PM
Adrian Holmes Adrian Holmes is offline
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Default Looking for Durst VLS 501 varicontrast head for my Laborator 1200

If anyone knows of a top condition VLS 501 variable contrast head that's for sale, I'd be very grateful if you could let me know. It seems you can get them newly-manufactured from an outfit called Pro-Durst-Usa in the States, but the asking price ($2,800 plus shipping and taxes...) is just a bit outside my range. Has anyone dealt with this company, by the way?
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Old 17th February 2011, 07:31 PM
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Martin Aislabie Martin Aislabie is offline
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Pro-Durst-USA are the retailers of Durst equipment in the USA

They have a large stock of new and reconditioned Durst equipment.

I have not dealt with them but their reputation is excellent (but pricey)

Martin
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Old 17th February 2011, 08:26 PM
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Adrian Twiss Adrian Twiss is offline
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I sent them an email inquiring about lens mounts and they did not even grace me with a reply.
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Old 17th February 2011, 09:11 PM
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I don't ever recall seeing a VLS501 for sale.

The vls500 comes up more often than the vls501. From what I can make out the differences between them are minimal if not cosmetic. The vls500 has a stepless filter range from 0-100. While the vls501 has the Ilford filter style of numbering from 0(00)-5 and at least in half stops. But having never used the vls501 I can't be 100% definite about the filter grade steps.

This was posted not so long ago to give you an indication of price and interest;
durst VLS 500 link

I have the vls500 for both the L1200 and the L900 and they work beautifully. The numbering really is irrelevant.


The Multigraph is a different beast altogether and takes some getting used to. These come up from time to time but they have more electronics that can go wrong. Ideally you need to know their history, preferably just one careful owner from new.

Alternatively the CLS500 and CLS501 maybe options as they have some sort of extra density filter that you can dial-in but maybe someone else could confirm this.

Then there is also the ilford 500 (or 600 = multigraph) heads that can be fitted onto the durst L1200.


What are you using at the moment?

PS I know where there is an Ilford 500 system for sale but I don't know for which enlarger as I haven't looked into it. He's asking for 650 euro as it looks as if it's never been used. I'll be visiting family in the Lake District in 5 weeks time so I could at least get it to 'our' shores for you?
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Old 17th February 2011, 09:40 PM
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Adrian,
Save yourself some money and buy paper, use Ilford below lens kit with white light. Nothing prints better.
JON.
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Old 18th February 2011, 08:04 AM
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Adrian Twiss Adrian Twiss is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrian Holmes View Post
If anyone knows of a top condition VLS 501 variable contrast head that's for sale, I'd be very grateful if you could let me know. It seems you can get them newly-manufactured from an outfit called Pro-Durst-Usa in the States, but the asking price ($2,800 plus shipping and taxes...) is just a bit outside my range. Has anyone dealt with this company, by the way?
Adrian

What head do you have on the enlarger at present?
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Old 18th February 2011, 08:15 AM
Dave miller Dave miller is offline
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I have a VLS501 head on my 1200, but you can't have it.
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  #8  
Old 18th February 2011, 09:09 AM
Adrian Holmes Adrian Holmes is offline
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Hi Dave -
Have you heard the rumour that VLS 501 heads have blue asbestos linings in the lamp housing, and are also known souces of medium level plutonium irradiation? Plus there are unconfirmed reports that the earthing on many of these units was suspect, and that some even spontaneously exploded when the grade dial was set to anything above 3.5. Would be happy to collect and dispose of this frankly hazardous piece of technology on your behalf, free of charge naturally. FADU simply can't afford to lose one of its key people.
Adrian
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Old 18th February 2011, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Butler View Post
Adrian,
Save yourself some money and buy paper, use Ilford below lens kit with white light. Nothing prints better.
JON.
I'll second this advice. I have the CLS500 ahead, and found I get better results with the Ilford filters below the lens than I did using the built-in colour filters in the recommended combinations. Much quicker to change filters too.
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Old 18th February 2011, 10:12 AM
Dave miller Dave miller is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrian Holmes View Post
Hi Dave -
Have you heard the rumour that VLS 501 heads have blue asbestos linings in the lamp housing, and are also known souces of medium level plutonium irradiation? Plus there are unconfirmed reports that the earthing on many of these units was suspect, and that some even spontaneously exploded when the grade dial was set to anything above 3.5. Would be happy to collect and dispose of this frankly hazardous piece of technology on your behalf, free of charge naturally. FADU simply can't afford to lose one of its key people.
Adrian
I shall just stand a little further away from it when I next use it.

The internet being what it is I can visualise quite a few of these appearing for quick disposal on ebay as the hazards of using them become more widely known as a result of your timely post.
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