4x5 pinhole

Discussion in 'Pinhole Photography' started by htmlguru4242, Oct 21, 2005.

  1. htmlguru4242

    htmlguru4242 Member

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    I just obtained about 40 sheets of [free] sheet slide film. It is a combination of Kodak e100s and fuji provia.

    I want to shoot this in a pinhole cam. but hte largest I have is for 120. Any suggestions / designs for building a 4x5 camera?
     
  2. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    Check out the Leonardo series of pinhole cameras at pinholeresource.com You can easily make out the construction, and IIRC, there are plans in Eric Renner's excellent book on pinhole photography, available through that site. The 4x5 Leonardo cameras take regular filmholders and polaroid backs.

    Lee
     
  3. nsurit

    nsurit Subscriber

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    Zero Image makes a 4X5 with a combination of various pinhole and zone plates. www.zeroimage.com should get you there if interested. Bill Barber
     
  4. Jersey Vic

    Jersey Vic Member

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    The easy route:I have a lensless camera co. 75mm (wide angle) 4x5 that I love and it ran me about $60. The tougher route: I built an ultra wide 4x5 using layers of black matt board rubber cemented together, black cloth tape and black felt that takes standard and polaroid backs. I will search for the plans and let you know if I can find them. If not I can take a couple of digital pix monday and will be happy to walk you through it.
    The 4x5 negatives really print beautifully.
    Good luck
     
  5. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That sounds interesting. How wide can you go with a pinhole? Theoretically as wide as you want, I suppose, but out of curiosity, how wide is practical? Could you make a usable photo with pinhole, say, 10mm or 15mm from the film on 4x5" or is the falloff too great to see anything in the corners?
     
  6. John Bartley

    John Bartley Member

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    Here's a link (it's not always up, but most of the time it is - it's served from my house) for a homemade pinhole camera. When I made this one I was using scraps of wood and bits of hardware that I had lying around. It's not pretty, but it's made some nice pictures. Just remember that the smaller the pinhole...the sharper the picture.

    http://oldradio.ca:83/Photo/Tech/FirstPinhole/Pinhole01.html

    cheers eh?
     
  7. htmlguru4242

    htmlguru4242 Member

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    Wow, John ... I have to say, that camera looks simple, but VERY nice. It's certinly much better than spending $60+ on a commercial one (which probably takes identical quality pictures). I'll have to grab some wood and try it.

    Are you using premade pinholes or your own?
     
  8. John Bartley

    John Bartley Member

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    Thank you.

    I should add that because you are using film, you NEED to be sure that the seal between the film holder and the camera body is light tight. With paper it's not quite so important as the speed is so low. Also, it does help in reducing internal reflections to either line the inside of the box with black felt or to paint it flat black (ask me how I know these things :smile:).

    As to the pinhole...I'm a tinkerer, so I had some 0.002" brass shim stock here. I also just happened to have a jewellers hand drill and some smaaaalll bits, so I drilled my own pinhole at a size of 0.020" (I think).

    The next camera I make will be for 8"x??" for PlusXAero cut from a roll. It will be a very small pinhole and a long focal length and will have a radiused back so hopefully it will have no distortion of perspective amd should have a nice sharp image.

    cheers
     
  9. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    True up to the point where a significant percentage of the light is diffracted by the pinhole edge and your system becomes diffraction limited and then starts to deteriorate with decreasing aperture size. Eric Renner (www.pinholeresource.com & author of Pinhole Photography ISBN 0-240-803507) has come across over 50 ways of calculating optimal pinhole size in his research. His own conclusion is that optimal size is near:
    aperture diameter in thousandths of inches = sqrt(55*focal length in inches)

    The book is a very worthwhile purchase, and covers slit apertures, zone plates, and other related topics. There is a sequence of eight 4x5 shots at apertures from f:22 to f:288 that is instructive. There are also plans for a simple wooden camera that takes 4x5 filmholders, similar to the Leonardo boxes I pointed out earlier as examples of simple, functional construction that you could easily duplicate.

    Very nice job on the camera John. Your design is similar to the Leonardo, which uses eccentrically mounted dowels to provide a cam-like action to hold the film holder in place. Other options are bars with rubber band or spring tension to grip the film holder. A bit of self adhesive felt or soft rubber sheet is a nice addition where the face of the film holder presses against the rabbet/rebate (depending on whose English you're speaking).

    I'll check Renner and post if he has anything useful to say about angles of view. My recollection is that this is highly dependent on the pinhole, especially the thickness of the pinhole material, and can approach 180 degrees if you have a good pinhole and either don't mind the falloff or curve the film/paper.

    Lee
     
  10. htmlguru4242

    htmlguru4242 Member

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    That's a mighty small hand - drilled pinhole; good work.

    I'm assuming that you discovered the need fot a good seal the hard way (we all do that), though thank's for pointing it out, as I don;t want to learn the hard way with 4x5 Ektachrome.

    And flocking the inside with black paint is probably a real good idea; internal reflection does some odd stuff, though with some cameras (read: Holga), that can be cool. I'm more going for the high - qualiity pinhole end, so whatever can be done to improve the picture, I will do ...
     
  11. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    In the US, Krylon Ultra Flat Black spray paint is a good place to start for paint. You can also find black flocked self-adhesive paper and felt at hobby stores. Either way will probably work very well for killing internal reflections.

    Also found the angle of view data, although stated differently by Renner. The image diameter on a flat surface (non-curved film or paper) is approximately 3.5 times the focal length with a good pinhole. One inch of focal length gives you a 3.5 inch diameter circle, so 1.85 inches or 47mm of focal length should give you corner to corner coverage on 4x5.

    Lee
     
  12. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Hmm. I've got hand-made pinholes in a pair of gum-tin cameras that are .006", varying by about .0003" between them. Yes, that's half a stop difference, but it's as close as I'm going to get without spending far too much time on them.

    And FWIW, I have pinhole cameras that cover the film reasonably well with better than 115 degree FOV; a pinhole is capable of about 140 degrees if you use some means like a curved film to overcome light fall-off.
     
  13. Jersey Vic

    Jersey Vic Member

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    The camera I made is a 37.5mm and that length works pretty well in terms of vignetting so long as conditions are moderately bright. I imagine at 10-15mm you won't be able to cover very much of the film plane. The real problem with the 37 is finding appropriate subjects. You need to be practically on top of what youre shooting to fill any significant amount of the frame . I'll scan a couple of images when i return from "upstate".
    Cheers
     
  14. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks, I'd be interested to see them.
     
  15. htmlguru4242

    htmlguru4242 Member

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    Yes, definetely do scan those images; they'd be interesting to see.

    I was thinking of using Krylon Flat Black, as its easy to find, and, being a spray paint, covers quite nicely.
     
  16. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    another simple pinhole camera design is made by 2 boxes that fit inside eachother ( like sheet film boxes ) ... one has a hole in the front ( for the pinhole ) the other has a handle on it to aid in pulling it out, or pushing it in. i have a 8x10 pinhole like that, and it works great. you can also use a shoe-box.

    it doesn't have to be made of wood, it can be made of black cardboard/foamcore/matboard or pretty much anything ...

    you can multilpy whatever focal length you want to use by "3" to find out the image circle ... when i was making a 12x20 pinhole that was the number given to me so i would avoid "bowing" my film ...

    good luck!

    -john
     
  17. jtsatterlee

    jtsatterlee Member

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    Here is a link for a 4x5 pinhole camera that can hold a 4x5 film holder. The fit is a bit tight for a polaroid back, but I have used them as well.

    I have also included plans for a pinhole camera you can build out of form core.
     

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  18. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    I've an old Graphic that I would love to use as a pinhole camera. Is focusing done by measurement only?
     
  19. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    You don't really focus a pinhole as you would a lens. You just set it at some distance from the film, which is your focal length. All things are equally sharp from near to far, but none are perfectly sharp. You can get your focal length by measuring, and you can change it with the focusing rack. You also can measure the size of the pinhole, and a given pinhole can serve for a range of focal lengths, dependent on your tolerance for unsharpness. Focal length divided by pinhole diameter gives your f-stop (when measured in like units).

    An old Graphic makes a great pinhole camera.

    Lee
     
  20. wildbill

    wildbill Member

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    All this talk got me going and now i see someone else tried foam cor as well. I had some 1/2" black foam cor and some 1/4 as well that i threw together in about 2.5 hours tonight. I shot a couple polaroids for the hell of it and it works. I used the dimensions of my shenhao back for a reference, it's 6x6 roughly. The camera has a 75mm focal length.
     

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  21. Jersey Vic

    Jersey Vic Member

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    4x5 matt board pinhole image

    I posted this one made in my 37mm f128 matt board cam in the technical gallery; will post more as time permits.
     

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  22. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Based on the results of my GumPintoids, which are 16 mm projection distance and nicely cover a 60 mm strip of 35 mm film (though there is visible fall off at the ends), I'd say you can probably get a three to three and a half inch diameter circular image with a very soft fade around the edge from a carefully made pinhole with this projection distance; probably about the shortest that will cover 4x5 into the corners (on flat film) would be around 30 mm -- and I tell you what, it is unbelievable just how wide these cameras are, yet with a flat film, there is NO distortion; straight lines are still straight throughout the image.

    Honestly, I wouldn't recommend anything shorter than about 60 mm for 4x5; you practically have to stick the camera in someone's face to avoid shooting their feet, even at that projection distance.