8x20 Holders: Just completed 6 of them...

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Reinhold, Jul 5, 2005.

  1. Reinhold

    Reinhold Subscriber

    Messages:
    750
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Location:
    Washougal, W
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Well, actually I just completed 5 of them... after I put the first prototype holder through a couple of years of field experience to verify my design.

    After I bought my new Canham and saw the $400 price tag for 8x20 holders, I decided to put my woodworking skills to use and make a few of my own holders. Using an ancient 8x20 Corona holder as a typical example, I came up with a design, cut parts for 6 holders, and assembled one of them for verification. It worked beautifully, but I just didn't have the time to finish the other 5 until I retired a few weeks ago.

    If you're entertaining the idea of making your own holders, here are some of the things I encountered:

    Accuracy cannot be taken for granted. One must work with precision measuring instruments typically used in metalworking. You can't measure to plus or minus 0.005" using a metal ruler.

    A thickness planer capable of sizing wood to 0.005" is mighty handy. The router table must be FLAT, and you'll need a way to measure cutter depth to 0.005". You may even need to have cutters ground to specific sizes for slotting the siderails. I have small vertical milling machine which I used to machine intricate joints and the recesses for the light baffles.

    At first, I experimented with Oak, but quickly recognized the wisdom of the ages, and used Cherry. Super stable, strong, it machines beautifully, and doesn't split. The parts for the last 5 holders were in storage for the past 3 years, and were just as straight and precise as the parts used for holder number one.

    The hinge cloth is a bookbinders fabric which I tested for flexing and cracking. I made a sample hinge and submitted it to 2700 complete reversal (180 degree) bends, with no sign of pinholes thru the coating.

    The darksides are "Garolite", a phenolic material, and the septums are 6061 aluminum, both from McMaster-Carr.

    It's a complex project, now I understand why these things cost a much as they do...
     
  2. smieglitz

    smieglitz Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,941
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2002
    Location:
    Climax, Michigan
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I agree these things are pretty complex. What did you use for the light trap? How thin is the garolite you've used? I'm building a wetplate holder and would appreciate any tips on these materials. I decide to use 1/16" garolite since I only need one holder for wetplate and decided it could be fairly robust as a result.

    I purchased a new walnut 11x14 holder from AWB several years ago and just marvel at the construction ever time I use it. Pricey, but a beautiful piece of woodworking.

    Joe
     
  3. Neanderman

    Neanderman Member

    Messages:
    575
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio River V
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Bookbinders cloth? Pray tell more. Where did you get it?
     
  4. Reinhold

    Reinhold Subscriber

    Messages:
    750
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Location:
    Washougal, W
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    For the light baffles, I cloned the old Corona. It had two strips of thin brass, folded into long "vee's", with a narrow strip of black velveteen glued onto each strip. (I used ordainary 3/8" wide black velveteen ribbon from Fabric Land). They were set down into two parallel grooves, and acted just like the spring action weather stripping on a typical good quality front door. The brass can't be over 0.002" thick, or the insertion force for the darkslide will be too great.

    I used 0.032" Garolite. It's a bit thin (I wish it were available in metric thickness, 1 mm would be perfect. By being careful about the spring action on the baffles, I can keep the insertion force low enough so the 1/32" Garolite won't try to buckle. Another advantage is that the total weight of the holder is kept down to a svelte 2lb-3oz, compared to 3lb-6oz for my Blunderbuss Wisner holders.

    I got the bookbinders cloth from a local bookbinder (of all places). I picked up a few samples to try, and decided on a pseudo "leatherette" texture on a coated cloth that's 0.012" thick.

    Here's a photo of my efforts...
     

    Attached Files:

  5. argus

    argus Member

    Messages:
    2,146
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Nice job, Reinhold, the holders look very good!

    G
     
  6. Mongo

    Mongo Member

    Messages:
    960
    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2004
    Location:
    Pittsburgh,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Reinhold-

    Do you have any interest in sharing your technical expertise with others? I think a web page about this project would be popular.

    Unless you're thinking of making these as an extra source of income, of course. The market could always use a little competition. :smile:

    Congratulations on completing your project. The holders look beautiful.

    Be well.
    Dave
     
  7. Reinhold

    Reinhold Subscriber

    Messages:
    750
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Location:
    Washougal, W
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks for the comments. These things give me pleasure every time I pick them up.

    I thought about publishing the details, but my web expertise is zero. The idea of offering some for sale also crossed my mind, but making these things would get in the way of taking pictures. What to do.....?

    I know.... There's a P-38 and a PBY Catalina not too far from here. I'll put some film in my new "babies" and let them see what old airplanes look like!!...

    See you folks later...
     
  8. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Member

    Messages:
    1,897
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Location:
    Saint Paul, MN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Wow, they are really nice. Makes me almost want to take up woodworking, but I am still trying to figure out photography.

    If you want, I would be happy to thow together a web page that you could post on a free web host or the like. You could also get some space from Sean for a few bucks and avoid the ads you get with the free ones. Let me know.

    Paul.
     
  9. Colin Graham

    Colin Graham Member

    Messages:
    994
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2004
    Shooter:
    Plastic Cameras
    First rate work, Reinhold, really nice. Woodworking and photography are truly made for each other (I just finished a 4x5 camera and a tripod).
    -I wanted to ask how you cut the phenolic material, with a special table saw blade or maybe a trim router? I've always wanted to build a ULF, but the cost of the holders alone has almost singlehandeldly held me back. Thanks, Colin
     
  10. Nancy Gutrich

    Nancy Gutrich Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Is Garolite is the dark slide material used in the standard Fidelity holders...if yes, would you know the thickness of the 4x5, 8x10 sizes...
    Your holders are absolutely grand
    Thanks, Nancy
     
  11. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    17,946
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Great work!
     
  12. Reinhold

    Reinhold Subscriber

    Messages:
    750
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Location:
    Washougal, W
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Paul..

    Thanks for the offer to work up a web page, let me “ruminate” on the idea for a while...

    Colin...

    When cutting plastics and nonferrous metals (aluminum, brass, etc), you need a blade with a Triple-Chip grind and a negative hook angle. Woodworking blades shatter plastics, and are downright dangerous with metals. If you don’t have one, take a look at the Freud 7-1/4 inch x 56TCG “Diablo” metal cutting blade (# 122.990, at http://woodworker.com/Freud_Blades.htm ). It’s a thin kerf design, and should give a very clean edge which needs only a light dressing with a smooth cut file.

    Nancy...

    I cant’ say that Garolite is the ..exact.. same material that Fidelity uses, in looking at my motley collection of 4x5 and 5x7 holders, the material appears to be a plastic sheet that I’d guess to be a form of ABS plastic. Garolite is a Phenolic impregnated paper which I can assure you is perfectly suitable for darkslides. (I can’t make any comment about it’s suitability for infrared film, somebody else will have to make that test). I measured the thickness of a 4x5 Riteway at 0.030” and a 5x7 Lisco at 0.031”. I would not hesitate to us 1/32” (0.032”) Garolite for 8x10 holders.

    For 11x14 holders, 1/32" might be a bit thin because of a potential to “sag” at the edge that finds it’s way into the slot in the flap end, especially if the holder is laid flat when inserting the darkslide. I’m almost certain the 16x20 folks will need the heavy-duty 1/16” Garolite. Like I said earlier, if it were available in metric thickness, 1.0 mm (0.040”) it would be ideal.
     
  13. Nancy Gutrich

    Nancy Gutrich Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks for your reply
    Nancy
     
  14. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

    Messages:
    3,221
    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2002
    Location:
    S.E. New Yor
    I agree with Dave (Mongo). Your experience and knowledge in this would be hugely valuable to others who would attempt the same or a similar project. It ought to be recorded and made available for permanent reference. There are probably people who aren't going to start a project today, but down the road your information would be very helpful. Perhaps as a website or at least an article on APUG.
     
  15. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

    Messages:
    2,512
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2002
    Location:
    Omaha, Nebra
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Garolite is a tradename for a phenolic material. Phenolic comes in a variety of grades based on the amount of fiber that is included in the plastic. From what I have discovered, pehnolic grade determines cost. high grade phenolic used for circuit boards is pretty expensive, about $250 for an 8x10 sheet of .032 or metric equivalent.

    If you contact a plastics retailer and mention "garolite" they would provide the same product or something the same by another mfg. Most plastics retailers will cut pieces to size for a small fee. cost per foot would be less from a local retailer then McMaster-Carr or MSC, but then again you might have to buy a whole sheet.

    Here is the McMaster-Carr page:http://www.mcmaster.com/
     
  16. jjstafford

    jjstafford Inactive

    Messages:
    735
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Location:
    Minnesota Tr
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'm with Neal, but there is so much more to making the holders than directions. Nuances of woodwork screw me up - things like amputating my left thumb at the second knuckle seven weeks ago, little stuff like that. I give up. I'm so dim.

    That said, you have my appreciation and if you ever go commercial, you certainly have my attention.
     
  17. jon.oman

    jon.oman Member

    Messages:
    204
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2008
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    They look like a nice set of holders. I'm not sure that I could make them......