1904 Seneca No.3 8" x 10" View Camera with 2 backs, 5 holders, 100 sheets of Arista

Discussion in '[Classifieds] For Sale' started by indy_kid, May 17, 2013.

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  1. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    I hate to sell it, but I don't have the means to put it to good use. Going to concentrate on my Sinar 4x5 with an adapter so I can use my DSLR.

    Anyway, it's a 1904 Seneca No. 3, 8" x 10". It has a unique design, in that the front rotates! This allows Rise/Fall and Shifting simply by turning the front assembly! The rear standard allows for a bit of Tilt and Rotate, but not much. The structure is reasonably sound, but there is a bit of damage to the rails (see pix), and it's hard to move the front standard. The knob tends to slip, so I would recommend simply pushing the standard along with one's thumbs, then using the knob for fine focus. At 109 years old, one should expect a few problems!

    The bellows appears to be light-tight and in good condition. The camera comes with its original 8" x 10" back, and I cobbled together a 4" x 5" back from pieces I had lying around, so you have 2 formats to choose from! There are five (5) sheet film holders. I'm away from the camera so I can't check, but I'm pretty sure all the dark slides are good. There may be one or two with a crack or damage; I'll check and update the info on those. The one shown in the photo with the "leaf spring" apparently was intended for glass plate. That one has been sold; I just haven't updated the photo.

    The shutter is a Wollensak Optimo No.3. It fires cleanly, and the speeds sound accurate. The lens is a Wollensak Velostigmat Series II, 7-1/2" Focus. The lens appear to be in good condition, but I suspect you'll have shutter/lens combos of your own that you'll want to use.

    I've stripped all of the old varnish off of the wood, using a paste wax as a preservative (I prefer wax to polyurethane or any other modern varnish/sealant). As such, the pieces that comprise the rotating front are a bit loose. I suggest that you replace the existing felt with newer, thicker felt (or some other material) to maintain the light seal and to provide more grip when you tighten the screw once you have the front in the desired orientation. Some of the small screws are loose, due to age. You might wish to replace those with longer screws. You might also consider removing them, filling the holes with wood glue, then drilling small pilots holes for replacement screws. This second method will help to stabilize the wood, given that its over 100 years old!

    The camera does fold up for storage/transport, but there isn't a hook to keep it closed. There are some empty holes that suggest it once had a closure hook or strap.

    Asking $700 + S/H (O.B.O.) for the camera, 2 backs, 6 holders and about 100 sheets of Arista 8x10 film. I'm not sure of the specifics of the film; I bought it off eBay. It's been refrigerated since I've had it.
     

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  2. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    Bump!

    Okay, make me an offer! I need the money! The camera is ready to go as-is, but will still need some tune-up and restoration. The rotating front will make it a conversation piece in any studio!

    BTW, I have some thoughts on the construction of a new base that should improve functionality without great expense.
     
  3. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    BUMP!!

    Okay, I'll drop the price to $600 + S/H, as I need the money!
     
  4. PaulMD

    PaulMD Member

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    e: Missed the reducing back.

    Beautiful camera, by the way.
     
  5. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    Yeah, it's nice! That rotating front really gets the attention of other photographers. Hate to part with it, but I have medical bills that need to be paid.
     
  6. cdowell

    cdowell Member

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    Don't have a sample of a picture taken with that lens do you? I don't know much about large format and don't know how to judge the lenses. I'd love to find something that gives results with that 'old-fashioned magic.' Thanks
     
  7. PaulMD

    PaulMD Member

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    My quick research suggests it's a Tessar type. 9 1/2" won't even come close to covering 8x10, but it'll do nicely on 4x5.
     
  8. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    I got the camera late last year, and didn't have a chance to get out before it got too cold. I have some medical problems (selling off gear to pay those bills) that kept me out of the field, so I do not have any shots with that lens.

    Since that particular lens was on the camera when I got it, I have to assume the previous photographer had some success with it. The 4" x 5" reducing back was a recent addition by me; it's not original to the camera. I had parts to another camera, and modified them to fit this one.

    Honestly, I didn't expect someone would use the installed lens/shutter combo, given their age. That's not to say they won't work; it's just that there are newer, better combos out there that should provide greater coverage, etc. However, you just might get that "old-fashioned magic" with this set!
     
  9. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    Bump!

    $550 + S/H; ships from 47401 (use 20 lbs as weight, 18x18x18 as box size).
     
  10. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    I set the camera up looking out my apt. window, covered it with the dark cloth, then took a shot of the glass to kind of give you an idea of the coverage of this lens. IMHO, good coverage top to bottom, side to side.

    Seneca 8 x 10 lens coverage 3.jpg
     

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  11. c.d.ewen

    c.d.ewen Subscriber

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    I don't know the OP from Adam, but I can appreciate dealing with medical bills.

    Here's a small incentive to any perspective buyer: buy this kit and I'll ship you a f/4.5 12" Ilex Paragon Anastigmat for free. I've never used the lens, but I'm pretty sure it'll cover 8x10. Although not a cult lens, do a search and you'll find a lot of happy users of these Paragons.

    This particular example is not perfect - the photo below was taken to accentuate the small scratches on the front element. Please believe me, they really are small and will not have a significant effect on your photos. You'll be happy with photos you take with this lens.

    Charley
     

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  12. c.d.ewen

    c.d.ewen Subscriber

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    OK, I'm ready to double down. Not only will I toss a 12" Ilex Paragon Anastigmat into Indy's kit, Ill toss in it's little brother - a 10" Ilex Paragon Anastigmat. Decent glass, maybe just a tiny bit of internal haze; nothing to worry about. Both lenses are f/4.5 tessars, and both will produce real decent pix. Come on, load up!

    Charley
     

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  13. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    Thanks Charley! I'm amazed no one has snapped this up yet! It's such a nice camera, and will do more than people expect of it!

    BTW, I did find a crack in one dark slide, but I've covered it with 1" cellophane tape on both sides. The new owner can also use a black permanent marker on the tape, over the crack, for more protection. Or go to a hardware store and find a small sheet of aluminum! I've seen these at several hardware stores such as Lowes; look for a bin with brass, copper and aluminum stock of various shapes, thicknesses and lengths. Hobby Lobby may have something that can be used. Not really an issue, unless you intend to take more than 9 pix on an outing. Even then, you can use a changing bag to swap out exposed film for new and bypass the cracked dark slide altogether.

    One person did ask about the film, so I'm mention it again. If I remember correctly (a surgery gone bad damaged my memory), it's 100 ASA Arista B&W film, 8" x 10". You can cut it in half for use with the 4" x 5" back I made, but you'll have to buy 4" x 5" holders, as none come with this kit. I'm not sure of the expiration date, but I'm pretty confident it's been refrigerated its whole life.

    Well, maybe another lens will make the sale!! Indy needs a new catalytic converter!!!
     
  14. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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  15. aleksmiesak

    aleksmiesak Member

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    Man this is a sweet deal! And it would help someone in a bind. If I didn't already have an 8x10 that has been neglected the last few months I would be all over this! Sigh...

    Hope your health improves and you get some funds to pay the "big brother"!!!
     
  16. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    Bump!
     
  17. bastiendoria

    bastiendoria Member

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    Hello all,

    Wow, I am late to this news just browsing the forum today and I can't believe this deal has not yet been sealed! I am in the market for an affordable 8x10 camera system and I think I am seriously interested in this system. And yes, I'd be more than happy to see my money go to a good dead. Charley, btw, I don't know you but you rock!

    I read all of the previous posts but still have a few questions:

    - I'm planning on shooting portrait calotypes with the 8x10 camera I am to purchase, so Charley's 12" (and to some degree 10" too) Ilex paragon lens is right on. However, being that I shoot on paper ISO 3 I need my lens to be able to synch to a strobe head somehow. Is there any type of PC synch cord connector available of these older Ilex lenses?

    - question 2 has to see with the front standard: I understand that it is very unique and sounds like buckets of fun to play with. I would however be in need of "some" front tilt movement, even if minimal (say 5º) for the type of portraits I have in mind. Would there be any way to implement such movement on that unusual rotating front standard?

    - OK last question: I lived in Chicago 5 years, teaching photo at Governors down south in the burbs, but moved to Vancouver, Canada about 1 year and a half ago: would you accept to ship there? I would of course pay for the extra shipping cost and import duties (already used to that, unfortunately)?

    Thank you in advance for your answers, as well as for reconfirming what final asking price you were set on ($550 plus S/H?).

    Cheers,

    Bastien
     
  18. c.d.ewen

    c.d.ewen Subscriber

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    Bastien:

    I see you're listed as an MFer, so perhaps you're not overly familiar with the trials and tribulations of being an LFer. Don't get discouraged, but there are some challenges ahead for you, and please forgive me if I'm telling you things you already know.

    The two lenses that I offered are lenses only - there are no shutters with them, and thus no strobe sync. To use them, you'd have to choose a mounting method, e.g., mounting flange, lens clamp or just screwing them into a lens board with, perhaps, a little glue. I don't know if I have a mounting flange for either of the lenses, but will look around.

    Shutters are another challenge. The expensive way of joining a lens to a shutter is to have a machinist take the front and rear cells out of the barrel and mount them into a shutter. A somewhat cheaper method is to have a machinist mount the entire lens onto the front of a shutter. A much cheaper method is to use a Packard shutter, perhaps mounted in front of the lens. Believe me, many, many of us have duct taped Packards to lenses.

    All that said, I'd personally recommend you start with the simplest, cheapest mounting & syncing method - use a hat for a shutter and fire the strobe manually. If you're in a studio using ISO 3 paper, that'll work fine.

    Charley
     
  19. indy_kid

    indy_kid Member

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    Items withdrawn from sale. I may repost them some time in the future, but not sure at the moment.

    Thanks for your interest!
     
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