Any Graflex Collectors in Here?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by Sean, Oct 26, 2002.

  1. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    Hi,

    A few years ago I picked up a Graflex SeriesB Curtain Aperture camera. The metal tag on the side says "The Folmer Graflex Corporation, rochester NY". In the bottom left of that tag is a small stamped sn I guess that says 1222. It looks like the 3 1/4 b 4 1/4 model. It's in great condition, with 3 lenses, filters, 2 regular film holders and a film magazine. Carrying case and an old wooden tripod. I mostly bought it because it looks really cool displayed in my living room. I can't find much info on this camera. I'd like to know what year it is, and if it's worth anything? I paid like 100US dollars for the whole set.
     
  2. Robert

    Robert Member

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    I'm no collector and all I know about graflexs is my research into budget entries into LF. The way I understand it the 3x4 models have the least value. Film isn't available so without a rollback only a collector would want one. OTOH the three lens can easilly be worth quite a bit. Depending on the lens any one of them could be worth more then you paid for the whole thing.

    Is it the older version of this?

    http://graflex.org/articles/series-d/

    If so it's likely got a non-standard back in addition to the film issue.

    I don't know what it's worth but I'm guessing it worth more then you paid for it.
     
  3. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    It looks very similar but has a much smaller bellows. I saw a few on ebay that are nearly identical to mine. They aren't selling for much so I'll just keep it as a conversation piece. I thought about modifying it to do some shooting, but since it's not 4x5 I won't bother. It would be a major pain to cut the sheet film down in size. I think they might make a 120 roll film back for it, but still probably not worth the trouble. Can't wait to get my 8x10 view camera,, hopefully in a few months...
     
  4. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    If the camera works, I wouldn't discount using a rollfilm back or cutting sheet film. Indeed it sounds like a pain, but 5x7" shooters cut down sheet film all the time, and say that once you get the hang of it, it's not so difficult. You need a rotary trimmer, and the general approach is to put two pieces of tape on the board that you can feel in the dark, one to cut along the long side and one along the short side. If you are confident about your ability to keep the emulsion going the same way at all times you don't need to notch the film, but if you want to notch the sheets, you can use a hole punch in the upper right hand corner of each sheet. A rollfilm back would be even simpler.

    You've got a working camera with three lenses and holders, and quarter-plate is a format that hardly anyone uses anymore, so you might find that it has interesting possibilities.
     
  5. Robert

    Robert Member

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    A few things.

    If you do look for a rollback make sure it fits your camera. I think these mostly shipped with old style backs that are non-standard today. Some got retrofitted by owners. Check the holders they'll be different then standard film holders.


    I think a US company may actually cut film to size but it might make more sense to do it yourself. Does somebody make normal Ortho film anymore? If so you could cut it with the safe light on.

    Those cameras came with longer lens then the press cameras. Depending on the design they might cover 4x5. I'm guessing they are barrel lens. If so getting a 4x5 speedgraphic body might be cheaper and easier then finding the right rollfilm holder. If they have shutters then they would work on any 4x5 body. Even without shutters then can be made to work with some effort. Old lens don't mean bad ones.