May 11, 2014

Present to a provision dealer at Dihua Street inTaipei, Taiwan


In autumn season, 2012, I went Dihua street to visit familiar tea leaves shop. On the way, I came across pretty cat, who was kept by a provision dealer. I took the cat with Canon EOS1V & Kodak T-MAX400. Although it was 1.5 years ago, I made the printing by wet process with Valoy II. I created several prints, adjusting the photo by the setting of variable grade filter and the way of printing. Follow two photos are examples from several prints. Then selected the best image.

During my travel to Taiwan in this month, I brought the print to the dealer as the gift to express my appreciation that they provided me the opportunity take the pretty cat in 2012.
The dealer owner and his shop staff are very much impressed by my print with traditional wet process development, meeting again the pretty cat, who is already grown-up.

I can't talk in Chinese well. But thanks to the fiber base print, I could come out of my shell with them immediately. In autumn season of this year, my wife and I intend to visit Taiwan again. Surely I visit again the dealer to meet them and the pretty cat.

Camera: Canon EOS-1V
Lens: Sigma 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM
Film: Kodak T-MAX400
Developer for Film: Kodak T-MAX Developer
Enlarger: Leitz Valoy II
Lens for Enlarger: Focotar 50mm F4.5 1st ver.
Printing paper: ORIENTAL EAGLE VC FB
Variable contrast filter: FUJIFILM VG Filter N P set
with original filter holder

Mar 30, 2014

In Zurich, Nov 2013, at Night (2)


On the street in Zurich, Swiss.

Camera: Leica M3
Lens: Summilux 50mm F1.4 ver.2
Film: ILFORD Delta 400 Professional
Self-development with Kodak D76
Film Scan with EPSON GT-F600




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Mar 9, 2014

In Zurich, Nov 2013, at Night

In last year, I went to Swiss. In Zurich the distributed illumination was beautiful.


Camera: Leica M3
Lens: Summilux 50mm F1.4 ver.2
Film: ILFORD Delta 400 Professional
Self-development with Kodak D76
Film Scan with EPSON GT-F600



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Mar 2, 2014

At Siam Square, Bangkok, Thailand


When I went to Bangkok in Nov 2014 as business trip, I got one day free at a weekend.
At the ceiling of a cafe in Siam Square, I found out the interesting large screen as shooting target.


At Siam Square, Bangkok, Thailand in Nov 2014
Camera: Leica M3
Lens: Summilux 50mm F1.4 ver.2
Film: ILFORD Delta 400 Professional
Self-development of film with Kodak D76
Film Scan: Epson GT-F600

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Feb 17, 2014

Fine tea leaf bottle from Taiwan

I really love cute, elegant and beautiful porcelain made in Taiwan. I can also see very fine porcelain in Japan. For example, Arita or Imari in Kyusyu, Japan based on beautiful milky white, so called Nigoshide.
I also like pure white base porcelain with cool hand painting in Taiwan. The attached photo show you one of examples. I got this small size tea leaf bottle (height: about 3cm) in Yingee,near Taipei.

Fine tea leaf reserver from Taiwan

Fine tea leaf reserver from Taiwan


In daily working life, I go to any place in Japan as busines trip. So I put my favorite tea leaves in the small bottle, for example, Shanlinxi ooloing tea, Alishan ooling tea, Oriental beauty, etc. After I arrive at hotel, I enjoy such fine tea with boiling hot water at the room as a kind of healing. It's much fan.

Feb 5, 2014

How to create holder of multigrade filter for Valoy

The Valoy II arrived at my new darkroom at my home. But there is an issue. Valoy doen't have the holder of multigrade filter. So I considered several ways to put the filter to Valoy. And finally when I went Daiso, which is Japan's famous 1 coin shop, bassically all 100JPY for almost all selling items, I came across egg separator. When I look at it, I also come across the idea to make the holder as follows.

As you can see here, I could make the holder of multigrade filter.

Multi grade filter's holder

It was originally egg separator sold in Daiso as kitichen tool.

Multi grade filter's holder

I cut out the center portion of egg separator and connected the ring portion into L shape stay to realize same way of fixation as original Valoy's red filter stay. I bought the L shape stay at TOKYU HANDS in Shinjuku, Tokyo. The product is actually made by KONIVIOLA. The product code is "Ministay 36 K-341". The price at Tokyu Hands is 250JPY as 2 pieces set.

Holder of multi grade filter_Lshape

The shape was quite similar into the L shape stay for original red filter of Valoy. So I considered that it must be possible to fix the stay on Valoy using bolt.

New enlarger at my home

But L shape stay of TOKYU HANDS has the angle about 90degree, while L shape stay of the original red filter of Valoy has 82 to 83 degree. So I adjusted the angle of TOKYU HANDS's by myself.

Red filter and stay

The stay of TOKYU HANDS still required the modification. The bolt size of Valoy to fix L shape stay of original red filter is M4 size. The hole size of TOKYU HANDS's L shape stay was too small to apply M4 bolt. Thus I expanded the size of hole by drilling. The drill also can be bought at Daiso among wide size selections, 100JPY per one piece of drill. For DIY, I have several size. This time, I selected dril size 4.2mm.

Holder of multi grade filter_Drill

Here is the photo after dirlling. Hole size are larger compared with bottom hole, which has original size of hole.

Holder of multi grade filter_dril

To fix L shape stay for drilling, the vise is necessary as follow photo. I also bought it at Daiso, 100JPY as one piece. To fix L shape stay with vise, it is better to place wooden plates both sides of desk to avoid injury of desk surface. The wooden plates can be also bought at Daiso, 10cm x 10cm x thickness 3mm, 100JPY as 4 plates set.


Holder of multi grade filter_vise


After drilling, the hole has flash. It is dangerous and has the risk that it injury the surface of precious Valoy body (and my hand). So I purchased follow grinder to remove flash around hole portion. The grinder is for rough grinding. Thus I also used file for metal to realize more smooth surface.

Holder of multi grade filter_Grinder

To fix L shape stay on Valoy II body, M4 size bolt must be used. I selected M4 bold sold at TOKYU HANDS, which has plastic head for hand rotation. The pride was 120JPY as 8 pieces set. It is much easier to fix and release.

Holder of multi grade filter_ureascrewM4

But the M4 bolt had relatively long leg. So I adjusted the length, putting 2 washers on hole portion of L shape stay. The washers for M4 size were bought at TOKYU HANDS, 120JPY as 20 pieces set. The washer was fixed with instantanuous adhesive.

Holder of multi grade filter_wassher

Here is the completed aspect at fixation portion to Valoy body.

Holder of multi grade filter_screw

As above, the treatment of L shape stay was completed. The next issue was to make fixation hole at grip portion of egg separator after cutting out center portion and treatment with grinder and file. The grip of egg separator had originally relarively large size of hole. But the original hole shouldn't be used for the fixation with L shape stay. The hole position must be end portion of flat area of grip. Thus the circle center of metal ring as holder of multi grade filter come into linear position with center of lens for englarger. The hole for fixation was drilled with 3.0mm size, applying grinding and file to get smooth surface.

Holder of multi grade filter_hole

Then L shape stay and ring portion was fixed with M3 bolt, which has metal head, 180JPY as 4 pieces set at TOKYU HANDS.

Holder of multi grade filter_fix

I selected hand rotation type of M3 size nut for metal head M3 size bolt, bought at TOKYU HANDS, 100JPY as 4 pieces set, as follow photo. Then I placed several pieces of M3 size washers between M3 bolt and Nut to adjust the height of ring portion of egg separator, bought at TOKYU HANDS, 120JPY as 20 pieces set.

Holder of multi grade filter_adjust


Then finally I got the holder of multi grade filter.

Holder of multi grade filer_final

I attached the holder into Valloy II. And I put multi grade filter of FUJI VG Filter N P set. It is no problem at all.

The good thing of this hand made holder is that the ring portion originally from egg separator is made with deep drawing. This confection method realize structural enough stiffness to sustain the plate of multi grade filter in spite of thin stainless steel.

Holder of multi grade filer_ring


The color is silver. It is not so nice, since it might reflect the light of enlarger. Afer I come back from travel in Taiwan in this month, Feb 2014, I will paint the surface with black color, like original red filter frame portion, as the final assignment.

Jan 25, 2014

Leitz Valoy II is now at my home!


Now Valoy II arrived at new darkroom of my home.



New enlarger at my home, originally uploaded by Minochage.


It has been really my dream.
I'm excited about the fact that it exist actually at my home. According to shop owner, my Valoy was imported from Europe. The lamp house, plywood compressed base plate and metal shaft pole almost don't have any injury and rust. I highly appreciate that previous owner of the Valoy keep it very clean for the last more than 40 years.



New enlarger at my home, originally uploaded by Minochage.



At first I wanted to find out and buy Focomat Ic. But it was quite difficult to find out with very good condition and reasonable price. As compromise, I selected Valoy II. The difference of Valoy II from Focomat Ic is that Valoy II can't implement auto focus. However, Valoy II still has the most important feature, same as Focomat Ic and Focomat II, that the condenser lens directly attach on the surface of the nega film in nega carrier.
If the lens directly attach on the film surface, newton ring problem easily happen. But fortunately, the surface of condenser lens of my Valoy II has anti-newton ring treatment in advance. So I don't need to look for the anti-newton filter for condenser lens.



New enlarger at my home, originally uploaded by Minochage.


New enlarger at my home, originally uploaded by Minochage.


In the first half of Feb '14, my wife and I will enjoy the travel in Taiwan with Leica M3 and Canon EOS1V. So I would like to start the development of film and enlargement from 2nd half of Feb '14.

But I have one assignment. The Valoy doesn't have the filter pocket for multi grade filter. It is possible to put the one touch attachment holder of Fuji or ILFORD on the lens body of Focotar, if the extension holder for the lens is applied. But I quite hesitate the direct attachment to protect the antique lens.




New enlarger at my home, originally uploaded by Minochage.


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