In many cases, customer could bring you a
photo without negative to duplicate or for enlargement. In the modern way, of course,
there are photocopier type machine available, which can do the job in two minutes. With
the price tag of $20,000 dollars, which is not very cost effective for only a few jobs per
week. Besides that, photocopier does not have the same quality as real photo.
Using a traditional method, you may need a macro lens, camera body, copy stand, lights etc., an investment of $1,000. For a 36-exposure roll, you can reload the film at most 3 - 6 times. It is still not very cost effective for a fee of $5.00 per copy negative work. In some large size enlargement work, for quality wise you may need a single lens reflex medium format camera. It could put you into another investment above $3,000.
I am very glad to introduce you a very simple and very economic method. It is using an enlarger as a copy camera. This method is very cost effective, for a 36-exposure roll, you could make up to 18 exposures, because you are saving the film leads and blank shots. Besides that, an enlarger lens is even more suitable for copy work than a macro lens. The format size is only limited by your enlarger. So, you no longer need to invest on camera. You do not need any special lighting either.
Place your print to be copied on an easel or board. Put any negative into the enlarger, focus and adjust the size until the light cover the exact area you want to copy. Remove the focusing negative, set lens aperture, and turn off the light. In total darkness, load a cut strip of film into the film carrier of the enlarger. You may turn on a very dim light now. Use any electronic flash, flash at the object at a distance of at least 3 feet away, by pushing the test button. You could make two flashes. One at the left hand side, one at the right hand side. For more even illumination, flash at Four Corners. For black and white work, you could use any light source. For color work, you are recommended to use only electronic flash. If you do not have a low power flash, turn the lens aperture to minimum, such as f16 or f22. Keep the flash at some distance. For very small print, because you are focusing at very close distance, you will need more light than a larger print. It is because the lens bellow has been much extended further; therefore, the effective aperture is actually much smaller than the reading on the dial.
One stone two birds. You can use any enlarger for multi purpose. If you have any question, please do not hesitate to call us. HI-TECH has a very good line of enlarger with a price of $200 up to $2,000. We can also teach you how to do color enlargement without any special equipment. In fact, it is one stone 4 birds.
5143 Tomken Road, Mississauga, Ontario L4W 1P1, Canada.