What format would you like to build?

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by barryjyoung, Nov 30, 2005.

  1. barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    Hello members and guests:

    The time has come to start the next camera project. The 8x10 plans have finally been completed and are merely awaiting plotting ($$$$$) and then shipment to the printer. After I get a few customers parts out the door I will begin designing the next camera plans and kits very soon. Before I do, I would love to hear from anyone considering building a camera or not. What ould you like to build? What format? What type (folding field camera, monorail, flatbed, rigid body? Any preferences will be duly noted. Thanks for your help people. It is more helpful than you might imagine.

    Barry Young
    cameramaker.com
     
  2. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

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    7x17 folding field camera w/ at least 28" of bellows.

    edit: I should add since Alex made the suggestion, 8"x20" would also be fine with me :smile:
     
  3. Alex Hawley

    Alex Hawley Member

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    8x20 or 7x17, both folding field cameras.
     
  4. barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    I have 2 votes for 7x17 folding field cameras and 2 votes for 8x20 folding field cameras. This is very much easier than trying to figure it out for myself, thank you.


    Barry Young
    cameramaker.com
     
  5. Peter Schrager

    Peter Schrager Subscriber

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    ditto

    Barry-7x17 would be the way to go for me....
    Peter
     
  6. mark

    mark Member

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    5x12 but 7x17 would work too.

    I love the ratio of 5x12 and started to draw up plans but do not have the time to make it to fruition. It would need long bellows as I want to use it for small things.

    Someday, Maybe.
     
  7. Peter Schrager

    Peter Schrager Subscriber

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    filmholders

    Barry-the real drawback is the price of filmholders. LOL it is something that needs to be exact so hence the price. I just wish there was a way to get the price down for us dreamers....
    Peter
     
  8. MenacingTourist

    MenacingTourist Member

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    If wishes were horses...

    11x14 and/or 12x20 field versions with a way to focus and still look at the ground glass. I don't have long arms.

    I'll start saving for holders now :smile:
     
  9. smieglitz

    smieglitz Member

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    Barry,

    I'm hoping to build a full-plate (6.5" x 8.5") single-lens reflex along the lines of an old old Graflex. I want to use the camera for wetplate collodion because for one thing, the mirror reversal shows me exactly what will image on the ambrotype/tintype. The resultant image is reversed laterally on the plate and it really helps to see it flipped inside the camera when composing. I also like the fact that I shoot from a low camera angle/waist-level with such a design.

    Since wetplate exposures are so long I have no need for a focal-plane or leaf shutter. I just basically want the chimney viewer, a way to flip the mirror out of the way quickly, and then let the light come through the lens. I've been using a Graflex 4x5 with a quarter-plate adapter in an old film pack holder and it works great. My shutter is a black beret which I put over the lens as I flip the mirror up. This setup works so well that I want to supersize it to do the larger plates.

    Joe
     
  10. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I've been thinking 7x17 for a while.
     
  11. athanasius80

    athanasius80 Member

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    I'd dig full plate (6x8) too.
     
  12. vet173

    vet173 Member

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    7x17- field of course
     
  13. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    24x30 - cm of course. This "lost format" is perfect - smaller and thus lighter than 11x14", visibly larger than 8x10", and the narrower aspect ratio of the German plate sizes (9x12, 13x18, 18x24, 24x30).

    A full "folding Reisekamera" would be stretching the limits of portability, so I'd settle for a lighter field camera type. Such a camera would need about 60cm of bellows to be usable at close quarters with a 380mm "normal lens", so the bellows shouldn't cause problems with wide lenses either.

    These cameras do occasionally show up on ebay, sometimes in the Reisekamera configuration. It was said to be the largest camera one could practically bring on a journey, which really says more about the owner's ability to hire porters than about the weight of the camera...
     
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  15. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    When day-dreaming I long for a 12x12 field camera. I don't suppose I would ever pay for one were it available though.
     
  16. medform-norm

    medform-norm Member

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    8x10" or 18x24 cm. We recently bought a large thornton pickard focal plane shutter this size with a spring back and GG. This is the starting around which we want to build something like a folding field camera. We're slowly assembling ideas on construction, parts to be used, parts to be bought etc. SO it's another long term project.

    Other than that, there are plans to convert a Rollei SL26 to take 35mm - a major challenge and possibly not doable - and in the past we've frankensteined several cameras with polaroid lenses grafted on 6x9 roll film backs - great for automatic exposure snapshots with flash! Another dream is to convert a Pola SX70 to take roll film: auto exposure plus autofocus on 6x9, it would be a fun thing. A japanese guy is trying the same and it's not easy constructionwise. Something one wishes one had more time and money for.

    These are just some of our plans/dreams and yes, if wishes were horses, we'd need a proper corral to keep them all :smile:
     
  17. Dan Fromm

    Dan Fromm Member

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    Well, I may be coming down with Stafford's disease.

    I was recently given a nice doorstop, in the form of a 3"/4.5 Pacific Optical lens. Its an oversize 3"/4.5 Biogon. John has one and has gone to a lot of trouble to build a shutter into his. The last I heard he was trying to cobble up a fairly conventional but very strong 4x5 monorail camera for his beast.

    If I ever decide that I have to use mine, I'll try to mutilate a 4x5 Speed Graphic into a monorail camera with back focusing. Also to make up a set of Waterhouse stops for the lens. But I don't feel much pressure to move on this project; the lens is the best doorstop in the house. Much, much classier than a cinder block, not much lighter.

    I'm feeling a little more pressure to build bracketry to hold my overweight oversize 600/9 Apo Ronar out in front of my little tandem camera. But not enough pressure yet to do anything about it.
     
  18. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    10X16...the same aspect ratio as the 7X 11 and the 12X20...field camera of course.
     
  19. barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    You folks are an absolute goldmine of information. Thanks to everyone who has responded so far. This is information I needed right away and you all responded. So far it looks like the next camera to hit the drawing board will be a 7x17 format. This surprised me. Now I have to try to lay my hands on a 7x17 film holder to take measurements from. The film holder is what determines all the other dimensions of the camera.

    Thanks again APUGgers.

    Barry Young
    cameramaker.com
     
  20. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I'm not sure that 7x17" holders are standardized. I'd recommend buying an S&S holder from Quality Camera, since those are readily available new and won't be as costly as the other new options.
     
  21. barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    I was wondering about that. Just gives me more incentive to produce them myself. I have had several wooden holders which I took apart to see what made them so expensive. The mystery was buried deep inside the holders I disassembled. It was simply that people like dough. Making film holders is not rocket science. Maybe I will make some and then design a camera around them.

    Thank you


     
  22. lee

    lee Member

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    I think building a camera around a 7x17 is an excellent idea. Make mine a 7x17 also.

    lee\c
     
  23. nick mulder

    nick mulder Subscriber

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    I am yet to pull one apart but my next camera will be a 8x10 and I plan to make a holder also ... just need a lens and shutter with the coverage - rare, here in NZ :sad:

    a few other projects first tho to do with my 16mm cine cam ...
     
  24. noseoil

    noseoil Member

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    Barry, if you plan on making the 7x17 holders, please find out about the "sizes" involved as has been mentioned. John at J&C had a small problem when he started selling 8x10 a couple of years ago, because he had film sliced which fit the new plastic film holders (the latest specs). As usual, he made good on any problem. Some of us were using older wood holders and the film was a couple of thousanths too wide to fit properly. You might check with him to see what is needed for the "correct size" which actually fits 7x17 (one size fits all?).

    I would like to see a 7x17 which is based on the rear frame type of construction, not a box. There was a link posted recently for a 16 x 20 on ebay out of Hong Kong that looked simple and relatively light, given the format involved. Simple, light, rigid, strong, with just enough movements to be practical gets my vote. Bellows draw was mentioned and I would vote for a minimum of 28" as well, but possibly more if it is practical. Something which folds into a backpack would be great. This is a fascinating format and seeing Matt's images out of Texas has been a boost for me. I hadn't considered this format until his pictures were posted. I like the idea of a kit with hardware. I have enough tools to finish the project, but machining metal is another aspect entirely beyond my means. Thanks for posting this thread. tim
     
  25. photomc

    photomc Member

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    As long as some are wishing...I think a 7x11, that doubles as an 8x10 and was under 10 lbs would be great (field camera of course), in leu of that I think a 7x17 is also a good choice.
     
  26. gcoates

    gcoates Member

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    I'm not a large format shooter yet, but when I become one, it's likely to be 7x17.