Polaroid 40 x 48 - am I nuts?

Discussion in 'Ultra Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by BrianShaw, Jan 19, 2008.

  1. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    I have a vague recollection of seeing something on the Polaroid web site about a 40 x 48 camera. I can't find anything when I looked to day - did I dream/hallucinate this?
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Joe McNally used it for his series of Ground Zero workers.
     
  3. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Ahhh... that rings a bell. There was an article in VC. Maybe that's what I was recalling, not something I saw on the Polaroid site. Thanks, I feel less senile now!
     
  4. Allen Friday

    Allen Friday Member

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    The camera McNally used "Moby C", can do prints 40x106 inches. The camera is in NYC. Just google "McNally polaroid ground zero."
     
  5. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That's right. I thought they were longer than 48" when they were hanging in Grand Central.
     
  6. TracyStorer

    TracyStorer Member

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    Polaroid 40x80

    Usually referred to as 40"x80" but capable of longer as in the McNally work. The camera is currently privately owned, and dismantled. The camera required two operators working inside the camera in total darkness, I worked there part-time in the '90s when it (and I) was still in Boston and some amazing work has been made with it over the years.

     
  7. Phil

    Phil Member

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    This is worth a listen...

    All Things Considered, June 22, 2000 ยท NPR's Margo Adler steps inside the world's largest Polaroid camera. The room-sized camera creates instant prints the size of a person. It was created by Polaroid founder Edwin Land, who simply wanted to prove to stockholders that he could do it.

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=1075776
     
  8. RobertP

    RobertP Subscriber

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    Tracy, What kind of lens was on this monster? Robert
     
  9. TracyStorer

    TracyStorer Member

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    We had a custom made lens for 1:1 work, focal length was somewhere around 6' weighed around 50lbs. We also did a lot of art reproduction from chromes with varying degrees of magnification using lenses from 890mm down to around 300mm. (mostly Schneiders and Rodenstocks)

     
  10. mark

    mark Member

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    Cool. Read a couple of articles. It says the camera was really a room. Tracy, how do you dismantle a room? It would seem to me that, if you could afford the film and the expertise any old blackened room with a hole it would accommodate the big ass lens and the film holder. Or was there more to it than that?
     
  11. TracyStorer

    TracyStorer Member

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    There was more to it than that, but there needn't actually be. It really was a free-standing room, with wall sections that bolted together, so that it would always be the same size, with a double doored light-trap box in the corner for entry. The lens wall had a rail system allowing around plus or minus 15" of lens travel for focus and magnification. Further, the ceiling had a pulley system for hoisting the print through the rollers and up into the air so it could then be laid on the floor right-side up for peeling. The "film holder" actually was a huge metal frame (several hundred pounds assembled and also bolted to the rear wall) that also housed the motorized processor rollers and vacuum board to keep the film flat during exposure.
    It really is a marvel, but finicky to set up and run well.