Grafmatics and the night wobbles

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Dave Swinnard, Nov 21, 2007.

  1. Dave Swinnard

    Dave Swinnard Subscriber

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    In the past I have experienced issues with 4x5 film moving within the holder during long (~20 min.) exposures on damp nights (holder tapping or not, camera usually dead level). (typ. Fidelity/Lisco holders)

    I've recently acquired a couple of Grafmatic holders and before heading out in the dark, I thought I'd ask if anybody has experienced film movement (shifting, buckling, etc.) with them during long time exposures?
     
  2. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    In a properly adjusted Grafmatic, the film septums actually exert a little "grip" on the film, so I would think it would be less likely for the film to shift around.
     
  3. Dave Swinnard

    Dave Swinnard Subscriber

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    Ok, being new the world of the Grafmatic holders, I have to ask about your comment "properly adjusted"... What constitutes properly adjusted? Straight septums I can see, but have I missed something?

    Dave (and confused)
     
  4. paul ewins

    paul ewins Member

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    At the end of the channels that the film slides into is a tab that grips the film. If the tab has been bent upwards slightly then in won't do that anymore. 4x5 is stiff enough that it should be enough to stop any sort of sag as well as movement.
     
  5. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    The bottom end of the channels the film slides into in the septums is crimped a little bit to grip the film. Thru age, this crimp can become loose. If you look closely you can see these crimps, and thru the delicate use of a pair of pliers you can apply a little more crimp if the film sheets slide out without friction.
    Prmiarily you will find that it is possible for a sheet to partially slide out, when you transport the grafmatics, and then when you go to use them, you end up bending, scratching or crumpling a sheet of film that has partially slid out of the septum.
     
  6. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    Film holders not only keep light out, they also are rather effective in maintaining the same air quality as when loaded.
    When photographing at night, especially on a humid one, it is necessary to open the dark slide, regardless of the holder, and let the film acclimate for about 5 minutes. This allows the film to pop before, rather than during the exposure.
    This is a practice I learned from Ray McSavaney several years ago. Since that timeIhave never had the problem with film movement (popping).
     
  7. KenM

    KenM Member

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    I think the longest exposure I've every tried with a grafmatic holder is about 15-20 minutes, and I didn't have any problems. As one poster mentioned above, as long as the septums have at least a little grip on the film, you'll be fine.

    Of course, let the film adjust to the outside temperature to lessen the chance of popping; just to be sure....