Saunders LPL 4550 XLG - Light leaks : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I recently bought a Saunders LPL 4550 XLG w/ VCCE head. After it arrived and I assembled it I noticed a significant amount of light leaking from the ventillation holes and seams of the VCCE module.

Can anyone tell me if they have had this problem. I have read that this is an excellent enlarger and I just can not believe that this is a common problem.

If you have had this problem, I would love to know how you fixed it.


-- Bill Smithe (, March 05, 2000


I just finished a workshop with John Sexton who has 4 of these in his darkroom. He's got all of them covered with strategically placed bits of black cloth (e.g., a "curtain" around the negative stage), a black hair "scrunchy" arount the lens mount, cardboard tubes around some of the vent holes (to "project" the leaking light away from the baseboard), etc. He said he'd never seen an enlarger that did not need such treatment, but that the Saunders was better than most.

-- Chris Patti (, March 06, 2000.

I bought a Saunders LPL 4500 enalarger after the John Sexton's workshop and got same problem as you described. So I sealed all the light leaking areas with black cloth as Mr. John Sexton did on his enlargers. It was fine for my enlarging work. Then I called Saunders asking about this issue. The technician told me that it would be no problem if the walls around the enlarger were in dark color. I did testing. Truely, I don't have any problem. So you don't need to worry about this issue if your darkroom walls are in somekind dark color. I like this enlarger very much.

-- Yong-ran Zhu (, March 06, 2000.

I've never seen an enlarger that doesn't spill some light, including my Sanuders 4x5. It's not the model you mention, but Yes, there's a little light that gets out from the negative stage, and possibly one or two other small sources. I haven't done anything to treat it, and the walls around my enlarger are light yellow. I've _noticed_ no problems, and am very happy with the enlarger.

Are you getting hilights as bright and separated as you would expect? That's where you would see fog, be it from the enlarger, your safelight, or the darkroom door.

-- mike rosenlof (, March 06, 2000.

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