New to Pinhole photography.

Discussion in 'Pinhole Photography' started by Shootar401, May 22, 2013.

  1. Shootar401

    Shootar401 Member

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    I've never "shot" with a pinhole camera, but I do have some 8x10 film holders and a new box of Arista EDU 100. I'm looking for some plans for an 8x10 pinhole I can make out of foam core. Ideally something cheap that I can throw together in a few hours. The ability to take film holders is a must. I have the tools to make one, just need some plans.

    To start out I'll probably make the pinhole with a very small sewing needle on aluminium foil, and shoot a sheet and go from there.

    Any input?

    Thanks
     
  2. rbeech

    rbeech Member

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    Make a box out of black foam core. The back should be inset to hold the film holder. A couple of pieces of elastic will hold the film holder in place.

    Recommend you start by using 8x10 PAPER. It's cheaper and you can develop it under a safe light.
     
  3. Truzi

    Truzi Subscriber

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    Foam core sounds like a good idea. You may find useful materials at an art/craft store (like Micheal’s or Pat Catan's).

    I made my first pinhole out of a cigarillo box from a cigarette store; it was 4x5. I drilled an hole in the lid and hot-glued a piece of flattened Pepsi can that was painted black, and made the hole in the can with an insulin needle from my father. Some balsa wood to make light-traps, glue, and black paint, and I was in business. It was quite cheap to make.

    Like you, I want to make one that will take film holders (though I may stick to 4x5 for now).

    This site has some useful information:
    http://mrpinhole.com/

    Don't get too fancy with your first attempt - you'll likely come up with design improvements after you use it a couple times.
     
  4. DWThomas

    DWThomas Subscriber

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    I've done a 4x5, and this year, an 8x10, that were done as rather serious woodworking projects.
    4x5 box
    8x10 monster

    The general idea of the 4x5, a rectangular box with three sides extended in the back to hold the filmholder could probably be imitated/adapted in foamcore (and scaled up in size to 8x10). I doubt you could use rubber bands the way I did to tie down the holder as they generate a fair amount of stress. Maybe some sort of elastic (Velcro?) that wraps around the whole box would work.

    It might be worth considering some 3/8 or 1/2 inch square "sticks" - maybe available in basswood at hobby shops -- glued into some of the corners to toughen corner joints in a box big enough for 8x10.

    On the 8x10 I used six inch pinhole-to-film spacing and a 22 mil (.56 mm) pinhole. Gives about a 92º angle of view at the diagonal -- pretty wide but not outrageous fall-off.

    Another APUGer's effort at 8x10 is pictured here but I'm not sure of all the details.
     
  5. Shootar401

    Shootar401 Member

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    Some really good ideas, I looked at Michaels and they have foam core on sale for $1 a sheet, plus I have a coupon for another 50% off for labor day weekend, so I might just stock up and get 50 sheets and make a few and see what design works best before I transfer it to wood.

    DaveT: I like that 8x10 you built. Thats pretty much what I want to do.
     
  6. smieglitz

    smieglitz Member

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    We ah hunting wabbets

    Pick up one of these rabbet cutters for 3/16" foamcore. The rabbets will aid in gluing joints.


    [​IMG]

    Link to info
     
  7. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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    This might be the best advice of all.
     
  8. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

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  9. Shootar401

    Shootar401 Member

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  10. Dali

    Dali Subscriber

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    It might be a silly question but how do you get a positive image from a paper?
     
  11. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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  12. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

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    It sounds like a luxurious pinhole for a foam core camera. The price of that pinhole might buy a basic 8x10 view camera and a few home-made pinholes on improvised lens boards, a more versatile system.
     
  13. edp

    edp Member

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    $300? Seriously?

    Think how many pinholes you could make out of $300 worth of beer cans.
     
  14. DWThomas

    DWThomas Subscriber

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    Whoa! I have to admit my first reaction to that kit was "wow, a high-priced solution looking for a problem." But then again, it's the OP's money, and the beauty of hobbies is they don't have to be economically justified. :D You could mount a step-up ring of suitable size and use a second ring (or work with the old series adapters and retainers) to allow clamping in a pinhole plate and achieve relatively quick interchange for way less money. But, if the OP indeed has (or has ambitions toward) LF cameras, mayhaps it all makes sense.

    To me the biggest problem is that the camera box to mount that turret thingy on should be mahogany or cherry with polished brass fittings, and maybe some decorative inlays, to be consistently fashionable. :whistling:
     
  15. Rich Ullsmith

    Rich Ullsmith Subscriber

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    Not a fan of the foam core idea. If it's featherweight, be hard to keep steady outdoors.

    Had this beauty idea some years ago to make a bunch of 5X7 cams out of those styrofoam coolers hospitals use to ship medicine in. Made a bunch of film holders, made maybe 30 pinholes and picked the best ones for hole to film distance, did all the math.

    Problem was, the containers were white. Nothing a few cans of matte black paint won't fix.

    Spread out newspaper in the garage and gave them the first coat. Came back half hour later, and they were melted. Turns out toluene and styrofoam do not mix well.

    I don't know if foam core has the same issue with paint or glue, but might want to test first.
     
  16. DWThomas

    DWThomas Subscriber

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    I suspect there might be a similar problem with foamcore. You could use black foamcore to eliminate the paint, and the water-based glues - Elmer's, Titebond, etc. to minimize solvent exposure. Brushing on a flat black latex paint might avoid the solvent problem too. (Or very light spray coats spread out over time.)
     
  17. TheToadMen

    TheToadMen Subscriber

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    You could use Duct tape. I made once a 360 degrees camera with 8 pinholes out of wood and covered it with Duct tape. It shoots one image on a whole 120 roll film.