The Polaroid 405 film holder only fits some 4x5 cameras?

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Alpenhause, Sep 8, 2013.

  1. Alpenhause

    Alpenhause Member

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    Uh Oh!

    I am finding out that the Polaroid 405 holder does NOT fit all 4x5 cameras.

    After extensive search on the web the Graflex and Graphic cameras seem to have a 50/50 chance of the 405 film holder fitting and working.

    Sometimes the 405 can work if the plastic lip where the film comes out is filed down.

    Sometimes the spring back can be fitted with spacers to accomodate the thickness of the 405.

    Polaroid 405 holders have increased in popularity in recent times, it would be good to know which cameras it works on and which cameras it does not.

    I think this will be a very useful thread, here we could compile a list of 4x5 camera models that the 405 works well on and the camera models where the 405 does not fit.

    Also we could list the 4x5 cameras that are easily modified or where filing down the lip a bit on the 405 will make it work.

    Another interesting aspect is whether or not you can insert and withdraw the darkslide once the 405 holder is in place on the camera as this can greatly influence this holder's convenience and usefullness to some photographers.

    Anyway, Hopefully we can come up with a great list of "Fit" and "MissFit" for the 405 holder along with practical easy Modifications.

    There are a lot of really sharp people here on APUG and I think this will be a great useful thread that will be referred to and contributed to a lot.
     
  2. johnielvis

    johnielvis Member

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    There may be some confusion as to what people are calling a 405. The holder for the polaroid mp-4 can be fit to some cameras--others (most notably the graflex cameras), the holder will not fit without the lip and lock being filed off--very impractical and difficult to keep held shut even with tape. The graflex SLR camera will not fit any polaroid back unless it is used "upside down"--where you'd pull the film out from underneath--and, yes, the darkslide is difficult to pull from the graflex slrs. Agan--cutting off the lip and closure locking device will work, but then you need the graflock back pressure to hold the holder closed.

    Ideally a design where there is no "lip"--or a lock that is "in reverse" will help tremendously. A big request a holder where the film is centered on the 4x5 frame like the polaroid mp-4 back. The normal 405 type backs have the frame against one side -- it is centered on the 4" dimension but not centered on the 5" dimension.

    A holder for a 3x4 graflex (which is possible) would be the best new design to come around in years.
     
  3. JamesR

    JamesR Member

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    I have a Polaroid 405 holder and have used it with a Wista Field, Graphic View II and a Crown Graphic.
    The Crown Graphic had a graflok back, but the Polaroid back also fitted under the ground glass. No modification needed.
     
  4. Alpenhause

    Alpenhause Member

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    This is good info so far!

    Keep the posts coming in Gentlemen!

    I am going to post the clearance dimensions needed on one's camera back plate such that one can measure their camera to see if it will fit.

    It will be a while though as I am currently out of 405's, as soon as my machinist makes me more of the plates I will get the details and photos posted, sorry I don't have it now for you all.

    I am most enthused that the mysteries about the standard 405 will be revealed accurately and that this thread will be one's last stop for info on who fits what regarding the 405 back.

    Johnielvis has brought some great info about the existance of "Variant" models of 405's along with Corran reporting the existance of off the wall 405's hence this adds to the mysteries a bit, Some of the oddball 405's will definately be of use to someone, just need to post the differences of samples found.....
     
  5. jcc

    jcc Member

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    Polaroid 405's don't fit in regular Sinar 4x5 backs, but will sort of work with the metering backs in the portrait orientation. The lip on the 405 gets in the way.
     
  6. rjbuzzclick

    rjbuzzclick Member

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    My 405 will fit in my Speed and Crown Graphic's Graflok back with the ground glass frame removed. It will also slide under the ground glass frame in my Graflok backs, but it's a very, very, tight fit, and possibly deforms the top of the 405 a little, which could result in light leaks.

    It does not fit under the ground glass of my Calumet CC-400. I believe that it was possible to buy longer (by 1/4" or so) springs from Calumet that made it possible for a 405 to fit, but I have no first hand experience with that.

    Honestly, I don't think the 405 was designed to slide under a ground glass, even if it does fit. The plastic top is just not that strongly built, and is very squared off with no "skids" for the GG frame to ride up on. Compare the shape to a Grafmatic film holder, which will mount either in a Graflok back with the GG frame removed, or will easily slide under the GG frame of most any camera.
     
  7. pierre506

    pierre506 Member

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    Yep, I met such kind of awkward situation using Polaroid 405 back on Sinar F 4x5 last Sunday.
    The 405 back could be close to rear part because Sinar has a big frame.

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