What to do with darkroom equipment?
December 9, 2005 10:18 AM   Subscribe

Have darkroom equipment (black and white enlarger etc.) - need suggestions where to donate, sell or dump. I'm in Jersey City beside Manhattan.

I have the whole shebang for B&W developing and printing but none of these items seem to have resale value, or at least my searches don't show up any bright ideas on where to offload them. I'd be happy to donate to University or Camera club.

• Omega Modular Condensor Enlarger XL C760
• Two lenses:
o Nikkon, EL-Nikkor 50mm f/2.8 N
o Omega, 75mm lens # 49476 VOSS 1/3.5
• Two Timers
• Dark room light
• Fine grain focus tool
• Trays (2 sets of 3)
• Thermometer
• Thongs (6)
• Contact sheet print plate
• Liquid measuring jars
• Chemical containers
• Filters
• Negative holders: medium and regular formats
• Color dyes
• Film developing tank etc.
posted by johoney to Media & Arts (21 answers total)
If you have no objection to offloading them to a private person like me, and if the bulk of it fits relatively easily in a car,I'd be happy to take it off your hands.
posted by spicynuts at 10:25 AM on December 9, 2005

I second spicynuts. E-mail is in my profile.
posted by odinsdream at 10:33 AM on December 9, 2005

you can donate them to me too and i'll pay shipping!
posted by booknerd at 10:36 AM on December 9, 2005

Yeah well I live in Brooklyn and work in Hoboken so I can beat you all there! Neener Neener.
posted by spicynuts at 10:49 AM on December 9, 2005

I'm wishing I didn't live 2000+ miles away. I'd even pay you something for it. =)
posted by raedyn at 10:51 AM on December 9, 2005

You can donate the whole lot to an inner city school or one of those community centers for at-risk kids. Places like that don't have much money for enrichment program supplies and a donation would be highly appreciated.
posted by necessitas at 11:05 AM on December 9, 2005

You should probably try your local Freecycle.
posted by hooray at 11:11 AM on December 9, 2005

Your best bet is a private buyer or just donate it. Schools used to be a great place to donate this stuff but I would guess they have all gone digital. It won't fetch much as schools aren't the only ones going digital, but quality stuff still sells, and yours is pretty good (although I am not sure what to do with the thongs while developing, they might perhaps go better on your models). A camera store just can't give you much at all, unless you leave it on consignment. I live very close and have wanted to get back into the darkroom for some time, but I can't throw my hat into this ring as I just do not have enough time these days. Perhaps in a few years I can find the time to make some nice B&W prints from shots I have been taking with the Rollieflex. In the meantime I hope you can find a good home for this nice equipment. An eBay seller is one option. They will photograph it, sell it and ship it for you, for a tidy fee of course. You should still be able to clear a few hundred, although don't quote me on that as it as been too long since I priced this stuff.
posted by caddis at 11:12 AM on December 9, 2005

ABC-NO-RIO is in Manhattan. They have a community darkroom and have both community access and educational stuff for kids. So it would be put to good use, if that's what you want. I'm sure some private citizen would take it off your hands (as you can see above), so it's up to you whether you want it going to a public good or a private good.
posted by zpousman at 11:56 AM on December 9, 2005

You may also try listing it on Lightstalkers, an active community of professional and serious student photographers, mostly journalists and many in the NYC area. They have a gear section, and if the equipment is good, it usually stands a good chance of selling.
posted by msbrauer at 12:03 PM on December 9, 2005

I think it has high resale value - did you try craigslist?
posted by agregoli at 12:16 PM on December 9, 2005

Please consider donating it to your local community art school.
posted by availablelight at 12:54 PM on December 9, 2005

I think in the interest of fairness (because, frankly, I want it, too), you should consider a local school. Lots of kids benefiting would be fantastic.

(I was going to ask on MeFi what basic equipment was needed to start an amatuer B&W dark room... Now I know!)
posted by disillusioned at 1:02 PM on December 9, 2005

I work in the art dept. at a high school. I agree on donating it to a HS photo department. I carpool with our photo teacher and she was just talking about how we need several of the things that you have listed. Not all schools can afford to go digital.
posted by nimsey lou at 1:19 PM on December 9, 2005

Not all schools can afford to go digital.

And some don't want to. My nephew prides himself on not using a digital camera. He attaches sticky notes to the pictures he sends saying "no photoshop was used on this picture."

Not that I fully approve of all that, but its his choice.
posted by StickyCarpet at 2:39 PM on December 9, 2005

A school that I've worked at refused a couple entire photo development labs that were offered for donation because the school is then responsible for disposal of hazardous material. Basically, most school administrators don't want donations that will cost the school money in the long run, regardless of what the art instructors may want.

I'd suggest that the best way to get rid of it may be giving or selling it to private individuals that may be interested.
posted by McGuillicuddy at 4:39 PM on December 9, 2005

A school that I've worked at refused a couple entire photo development labs that were offered for donation because the school is then responsible for disposal of hazardous material.

For Pete's sake, keep the hazardous materials, the chemicals, and then give away the non-hazardous stuff, the enlarger and accessories. This is not a reason to not give it to a school.
posted by caddis at 5:35 PM on December 9, 2005

caddis: I think what McGuillicuddy's school objected to was getting rid of the developer, stop bath and fixer chemicals that get used up as a result of developing, and printing photographs.

Printing photos is basically like developing film, chemicals that contain heavy metals (silver etc..) are used up, and can't just be poured down the drain.
posted by splatta at 8:07 PM on December 9, 2005

Exactly. So don't make them take that stuff. Just give them the equipment and dispose of the chemicals yourself.
posted by caddis at 8:37 PM on December 9, 2005

If a school already has a lab then they already have to dispose of the chemicals (as we do). Why would you donate all of this to a school that can't use it? If they have cameras and a darkroom then they most likely have all the chemicals too.
posted by nimsey lou at 8:51 PM on December 9, 2005

I'm a high school photography student (in southern Canada, mind.) We use all that stuff regularly (manual SLR cameras only, by choice). We would definately appreciate the donation. And I'm sure the school would pay shipping, but if they won't, I'll pay it. Email's in the profile.

(As far as the disposal of very toxic chemicals go, high schools already have to do this for chemistry courses. I've never heard of it being an issue.)
posted by Count Ziggurat at 9:25 PM on December 9, 2005

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