Roll-film backs for 4x5 camera ...

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Alexz, Aug 10, 2005.

  1. Alexz

    Alexz Member

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    What backs are preferrable to use on 4x5 camera (Graflock compatable, of course) ? I'm making my way into LF (4x5), however will be willing to be able to shot roll-film aside of 4x5 sheets.
    I noticed two roll-film backs types are available - by Horseman and Super-Rolex (presumably by Linhof ?).

    I'll be set with either, 6x7 or 6x9 version, so aside of particular format (6x7 or 6x9) which brand would be prefferable and why ?

    Also, what I'm not sure I'm quite realize: are all the movements inherent to 4x5 will be applicable once shooting on roll-film ? How this is established ?
    (Do I compose (including movements if necessary) and focus on focusing screen
    bearing appropriate 6x7 or 6x9 marks on it and then attach appropriate roll-film back to record the image ?)
    Thanks in advance, Alex
     
  2. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Wista make good roll film backs, and they are very good value for money. I've had a 6x9 for quite a while which fits under the glass on my Wista, or locks onto my Cambo 6x9 is a great format for landscape.

    Some focussing screens are marked for 6x7 and 6x9, if not use a pencil to mark the ground glass to show the relevant corners.

    Compose to those corners, movements are all still applicable regardless of which format you shoot, roll film or 5x4

    Ian
     
  3. Dave Wooten

    Dave Wooten Subscriber

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    I have some old graflex (singer) backs in 6 x 6 and 6 x 7, and 6 x 9, they work fine....quite inexpensive 60-85 bucks....I am going to try and modify one to make a 6 x 12, but with my skill level I will probably destroy it!

    That might be a good cottage market for those among us with the skill level to make the modification......

    change a graflex roll back to 6 x 12....should be worth a couple hundred bucks?
     
  4. herb

    herb Subscriber

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    roll film back

    you will like the Horseman - I saw one sell pretty cheap the other day on paybay. they make 6x9 and 6x12, both usable on 4x5.

    the cheaper graflock/singer types are tedious and nowhere near as well built.
     
  5. Stan. L-B

    Stan. L-B Member

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    There is no substitute for the full 5X4 format as you do get what you see and pay for.
    Whereas, with most roll film backs I have used they all fall well short of the stated 6X9, 6X12 etc. The only one I would consider should I have such a dire need for such an accessory is the Sinar Zoom. Yes, it does cost an arm and a leg, but you only get what you pay for. Sorry if this post sounds like a downer which is not the intention. Stan. L-B
     
  6. Alexz

    Alexz Member

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    Thank you guys, still no clear opinions as regarding Super-Rolex vs. Horseman backs though.
    Stan, I suspect I made myself misunderstood by my original posting - taking LF (4x5) approach I do not intend to opt solely for lesser then 4x5, but rather an added convenience of roll film at 6x7, 6x9 and probably even panoramic 6x12 appeals to be as well. I do not want to rule out these formats by going 4x5, though certainly native 4x5 will become the major one when appropriate.
     
  7. Dave Wooten

    Dave Wooten Subscriber

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    If I could afford it I would get the Horseman 6 x 12 for my 4 x 5, and will probably do so one day soon....I have also looked a bit into the shen hoa set up....they make a 6 x 17 which has all the masks for the smaller formats also and the 6 x 17 fits on a 4 x 5 graf back?

    Yes, I agree with you it is nice to have the roll film option and a lot of popular images sold now seem to be the panoramic ratios....
     
  8. John Kasaian

    John Kasaian Member

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    One alternative is get an Agfa with sliders. You'll have 5x7, 4x5, 2-1/2x7, 3-1/2x5 and 1-1/4x2-3/4 and all with one camera!
     
  9. eclarke

    eclarke Member

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    Hi,
    Robert White has 2 Sinar slip in RFHs which are discontinued stock by Sinar. I have just bought one and it is the ultimate RFH. I paid 235 pounds, the original price was 995 pounds..Evan Clarke
     
  10. Alexz

    Alexz Member

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    Frankly, I used to stay away from "all-in-one" approaches photo gear-wise, somethign cannot trust in (regardign precision and reliability).
    I think I would be set with just one or two roll-film formats: 6x9 and probably 6x12 in some future. This is why I think I would still consider dedicated 6x9 backs for the time being...
     
  11. Oren Grad

    Oren Grad Subscriber

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    Alex, the Linhof Super Rollex and Horseman roll holders are both fine products. The difference is that the Super Rollex is "overengineered" and built to last a lifetime. As a consequence, it's much heavier and, when purchased new, much more expensive. It's also possible that it maintains film plane register with slightly greater precision. But most users (myself included) find that the Horseman works well too, so it's really a personal choice as to whether the superior construction of the Linhof is worth the extra money and weight.

    Other modern roll holders more or less readily available include Sinar, Calumet, Wista and Toyo. Most recently some Chinese vendors have also entered the market with 6x12 and 6x17 "multiformat" holders of fairly primitive design but reasonably solid construction.
     
  12. AllanD

    AllanD Member

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    Linhof Super Rollex RFH are heavy but well made. Apparently, a late model will have more robust gearing, so is preferable. Mine have shiny film rollers which can cause flare at the edges of the film aperture when using very wide angle lenses (47 on 6x7). The film wind is very rapid.

    Linhof also make a thing called a Rapid Rollex. This a "slip-in" type RFH. These are lighter, more convenient and have blacked film rollers. They are only available as 6x7. These RFH have a reputation for holding the film very flat, but I haven't noticed any difference compared with a Super Rollex.
     
  13. Alexz

    Alexz Member

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    Thanks guys, understood.
     
  14. raucousimages

    raucousimages Member

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    I have had good luck with a toyo 6x9 back. I load it with Kodak UC 400 to back up some of my 4x5 B&W in color.
     
  15. Early Riser

    Early Riser Subscriber

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    I use a couple of Sinar Zoom backs. They are really superb with several interlocks to keep you from screwing up, they add to the complexity a bit but they are worth it. They hold the film flatter than any 6x12 back I have yet seen with the exception of the Fotoman 612 camera which allows you to tighten the film just prior to exposure.They will shift on the fly to and from any format, 6x4.5, 6x6, 6x7, 6x9, and 6x12. The downsides are that you need to keep them very clean in side to prevent scratching and that due to their weight may make a light weight field camera back lean out of focus. If you are careful with these 2 problems they are the best out there.