In dire need of 20mm viewfinder... and cheap

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by Andrey, Jun 7, 2010.

  1. Andrey

    Andrey Member

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    This is ridiculous.

    I got a 21mm color scopar and now I'm looking for a viewfinder.

    The cheapest thing I can can find would cost me 100 bucks!

    I'm not paying 100 bucks for two pieces of plastic glued together.

    What are my options?

    My first thought was to take a 35mm slide frame, make a box 21mm deep with a small 2-4 mm hole for my eye. But that's not too convenient.

    The second thought is to buy a broken vivitar wide and slim. That thing has a 22mm lens AND a viewfinder. And they cost 10 bucks. I could take out the viewfinder out of that camera and use it on my rangefinder... somehow.

    Does anybody have a spare one?
    Anybody has a broken vivitar 22mm camera?
    Other ideas?

    Thanks
     
  2. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    If you look at my link below for my wide angle panoramic camera you will see the wiewfinder I made. It is for a 65m lens on 6x12cm format but masked with the correct frame it would be around 20mm for a 35mm format.

    I made mine with a lot of trial and error using old lens elements. You need three elements in the order positive - negative - positive.

    I think the Vivitar option may be easier though. Something else worth trying is a negative (concave) lens in front of an ordinary viewfinder. Get the viewfinder from a single use camera and experiment with that.


    Steve.
     
  3. Krzys

    Krzys Member

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    If $100 for a viewfinder is ridiculous then why are you shooting with a rangefinder man! If I had to get a viewfinder separate it would be around $200 aud in the end..minimum.. Jeeze.
     
  4. Andrey

    Andrey Member

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    I shoot it because I like cheap, small wide angle lenses. Not because I like paying an arm and a leg for accessories. :smile:

    Pretty cool. I might try something like this, but if it takes too much time, I might be better off buying the viewfinder.
     
  5. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Admit: you put your scopar on zorki 4 :smile: :smile:
     
  6. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Logically you have two options, either pay the $100, or do without it.
     
  7. Softie

    Softie Member

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    You can buy a front-door peephole and see how it matches up with the 20mm, masking if necessary. Back when the Hobo was in production they supplied a front-door peephole viewfinder to approximate a 120mm field of view on the 8x10 format.
     
  8. clayne

    clayne Member

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    This is why I prefer to use an SLR for ultrawides - visualization through the viewfinder feels more accurate :smile:
     
  9. Andrey

    Andrey Member

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    How did you know? LOL

    It's actually a funny story. I FOUND a fully functional zorki 4 in the back of my apartment building. There was a box of "moving out garbage" and I peeked in. Two dead digital cameras and a zorki 4 with a mint jupiter 12. Score!

    But I do have a FED II I bought off ebay fair and square for 40 bucks. :D
     
  10. Andrey

    Andrey Member

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    The problem is that I don't like ultra wide distortion.

    I had a 17-40 from canon. The thing is huge, the quality is OK, but it makes the lines curvy. For some reason, when I have a fridge in the corner of my photo, I like it to be straight. It's very important to me.

    There's a distagon 21mm from zeiss, but I'd have to live 10 years on noodles to save up for it.
     
  11. clayne

    clayne Member

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    You have to embrace the look and feel of a wide-angle in order to effectively use one. Besides you can't really have wide and zero distortion unless you're shooting an inherently wide format.

    This is barrel distortion that Canon wide-angles tend to head towards. Nikkors don't typically do this

    Not all WA distortion is equal.
     
  12. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Well - I was thinking about same thing a while ago: to buy summicron or summitar to put it on zorki4 :smile: :smile: but on the end I emptied my pocked and got leica :smile:
     
  13. pryan9

    pryan9 Member

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  15. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    $100 for a finder or wire frame?. I know, the frame is multi-focal length but geez.
     
  16. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    And the Ikodot is--$100!

    After the Ikodot, $100 for a proper finder doesn't look so shabby.

    My opinion is, just look at the cost of a finder as part of the cost of the lens you wanted.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 7, 2010
  17. Andrey

    Andrey Member

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    When I look at it like that, I got a pretty crappy deal. :D
     
  18. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    It's all how you view it! :wink:
     
  19. 6x9

    6x9 Member

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  20. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

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    If you have any place local that still processes film in the disposables, then ask them for a bag of the bodies. Go through the various kinds in the bag looking for the one with the "closest" finder, then mask it to work. Tear the finder out of the cardboard and figure out how to mount it in a tube for your own use.

    Ugly? You bet. Ugly as home made sin. Functional? You bet. Mine works like a champ, but I have a 28mm lens. (On a FED2.)

    Cheap? Well, that all depends on what your time is worth.
     
  21. Andrey

    Andrey Member

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    Do you know of any point and shoots with a 20mm lens?

    The only one I know is vivitar wide and slim.
     
  22. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    Most of the single use cameras are fairly wide angle - perhaps around 35mm so you will need a supplementary negative lens on the front to widen the view a bit.

    When I was experimenting with the 65mm lens for my 6x12 camera I initially mounted it on an old 6x6 folder body (without the bellows or door). In order to get the viewfinder to show what the 65mm lens was presenting to the film I just taped a lens element from another viewfinder to the front.

    If you know as much about optical theory as I do (almost none) then there is a lot of trial and error involved. It also helps if you have lots of spare parts from previous camera and lens repair attempts!


    Steve.
     
  23. firecracker

    firecracker Member

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    There was a article on this kind of topic (Cosina's rangefinder "accessory business") by Dante Stella, and I totally agree with what he says.
     
  24. kossi008

    kossi008 Member

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    Well, I partly disagree. While I don't like to put many accessories on my Ikon, I do put up with the 21mm external finder for my Skopar to get... what?

    A non-retrofocus wide angle set-up. And THAT is the one thing that rangefinders do better than SLRs... it might be more clumsy to operate, but in the end it's the image quality that counts.

    And boy did the tiny little Skopar blow both my EF 17-40 L and my EF 20/2.8 into the weeds. To say nothing about the stealth factor... :D
     
  25. firecracker

    firecracker Member

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    I shoot Canon New F-1 with 20mm F2.8 FDn(New FD) lens, and that combination is not compact, but it's still very practical in many ways. I have Leica M3, but I only use one lens that is an old 50mm Summicron because I don't think it's practical to switch a lens which requires an external viewfinder.

    So, I guess we do what we do, and the choices we make are different...
     
  26. kossi008

    kossi008 Member

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    Couldn't have said it better.

    The FD 20/2.8 might even be better than the EF, the latter looks to be a new design, and in the early EOS days, often those redesigns were not made to improve the optics but to accomodate the AF...