Dark Cloth and Windy Days

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by bobwysiwyg, Nov 13, 2009.

  1. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Somewhat related to another post of mine re: sturdier tripod. It was a very breezy day to say the least and trying to keep the dark cloth under control while trying to focus, etc. was quite the challenge. I could have used another set of hands. :wink: Any tricks or tips you have found useful in situations like this?
     
  2. mjs

    mjs Member

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    Spring loaded binder clips, any brand, from any office supply store and many drug stores, grocery supermarkets, etc. I keep half a dozen in the bag. Just clip stuff together until it stops slapping you in the face. :smile:

    Mike
     
  3. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Thanks, Mike, makes sense. I had also considered a couple of holes in the dark cloth with grommet reinforcement, spaced to match the rear standard uprights, then something to keep things taught on the underside.

    And yes, it was slapping me pretty good. :surprised:)
     
  4. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    A black xxlg tee-shirt works too, stretch the neck part over the back of the camera, stick your head in the other end. For a big camera you may have to reverse that procedure, but it works pretty well either way.
     
  5. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Now that's an idea. I will have to give it a try.
     
  6. Mike1234

    Mike1234 Inactive

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    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2009
  7. Shangheye

    Shangheye Member

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    That's what I do...works perfect, and I get to wrap the camera in it without removing the T-shirt...K
     
  8. Richard Wasserman

    Richard Wasserman Member

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    Sounds like a BlackJacket:
    http://www.quietworks.com/FRAMES_FILES/WELCOME_BJ_FOCUSINGCLOTH.html

    Many people like them a lot.






     
  9. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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  10. 36cm2

    36cm2 Member

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    Wirelessly posted (BlackBerry8330/4.3.0 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/105)

    I also use a BTZS cloth, but prefer a traditional cloth when I know it won't be windy. It just feels nicer and packs a bit better.
     
  11. Martin Aislabie

    Martin Aislabie Subscriber

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    The biggest problem I have with my Darkcloth in windy weather is that it acts like a sail and tries to topple my Camera/Tripod.

    Having to hanging on to the Tripod with one hand and trying to use a View Camera with the other is no fun

    I have invested in a large string bag, which can be filled with large stones/small rocks, and attached to the hook on the bottom of my Tripods' Centre Column.

    It’s not perfect but the whole assembly is a heck of a lot more stable with the stones as ballast than without them.

    Martin
     
  12. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Sometimes a darkcloth just isn't convenient no matter what you do. I think it's a good idea to have strings or distance markings noted on your baseplate/rail so that you can focus hyperfocally, in a pinch.

    Anyway, my best darkcloth has lead weights in the corners. At the kind sof winds that disturb it, I wouldn't be able to use any bellows focusing camera* anyway... so it's moot.

    *With possible exception of the rb :wink:
     
  13. juan

    juan Subscriber

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    Because it's almost always windy here, I use two black t-shirts, one inside the other, put the neck over my neck, and stretch the waist over the camera only when composing and focusing. That way, I wear the dark cloth over my neck all day - no worry about the darkcloth sail tipping over the camera.
    juan
     
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  15. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Some interesting ideas here, folks. Thanks.
     
  16. Bruce A Cahn

    Bruce A Cahn Member

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    There is a heavy duty Calumet cloth with weighted corners, or you can attach weighted film hanger clips.
     
  17. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    Dick Phillips recommends these for his cameras. The one for the 7x17 is a little loose on the 8x10, but works well.

    Two of us (12x20 and 7x17) were up 90 feet on the new bridge over the Maumee River just south of you in Toledo. It was fine early in the morning, no wind. By afternoon we could just barely hang on. A worker had died in a fall when some scaffolding let go off the side a day or so before. The nice lady working for ODOT who was driving us around just parked her 18 foot extended van up wind of us and we were back to working conditions. The btz hood is probably cheaper and less maintenance than the state employed pregnant lady driving the 18 foot extended van.


    John Powers
     
  18. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Interestingly enough, that was sort of the area I was in. I had driven passed the mosque at the intersection of I-475 and I-75 many times and always thought it might make a nice pic under the right conditions.. oh, and with a camera in the hands of someone competent might help. :D I was out behind the building in a field and waited for gusts to subside before tripping the shutter. Still don't know whether it worked or not as I haven't developed the film yet.
     
  19. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    oh, you hadn't said that part was in the requirement.

    John
     
  20. HerrBremerhaven

    HerrBremerhaven Member

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    I run into that problem often, since I shoot around windy buildings, or at the beach. Worst is when I am sweating and the wind is really going, then the tube dark cloth I use just sticks to my face. What I really think would be the best choice would be one of those viewing prisms, though unfortunately they take up much space in the gear bag. I know a few other pro shooters who use the viewing prisms in windy conditions, with the Linhof reflex viewer being the favorite. I think Toyo and Ebony also have straight viewing bellows, though I am not sure how much better they are in the wind.

    Ciao!

    Gordon Moat Photography
     
  21. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    :wink:

    Sadly, the prevailing weather conditions have little to do with that part.
     
  22. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

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    I unfold the darkcloth just enough that I can drape it over the top of the camera when it is windy.
     
  23. srmcnamara

    srmcnamara Member

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    I still just use my sweatshirt, raincoat, whatever.
     
  24. wiltw

    wiltw Subscriber

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    Hook and loop strips sewn or adhered to the cloth...secures the cloth to the view camera, and strips along the bottom edge keep it more a tube which you plug with your head and shoulders
     
  25. Mike W

    Mike W Subscriber

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    Elastic Loop

    I had my wife sew a 1" wide strip of elastic, in a loop, to the forward edge of the focusing cloth, for about 6-8". Its looped around the top of the rear standard and at the bottom just forward of the adjusting knobs.(Toyo 45 A II)
    I find it much easier to use than clips, and probably similar in use to the t- shirt method.
     
  26. vdoak

    vdoak Subscriber

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    I use Velcro on the dark cloth strapped around the legs of my tripod, and around the lens/camera and a bungy cord from the tripod to my backpack to stabilize the rest while I am taking a picture. While I am focusing the Velcro helps a lot and if it is not in the "right" place i keep a couple of old fashioned clothes pins in my bag to keep the cloth in place.