Where can I find bellows material?

Discussion in 'Ultra Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by barryjyoung, Feb 24, 2017.

  1. barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    Hi, I bought a big piece of bellows fabric from Porters camera store when they stopped selling it. That is being used to construct bellows for my 11x14 Korona. I need more but have been completely unable to find any.
     
  2. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    I just went through this, but only needed a small piece. Fabric store's "blackout" material wasn't even really light-tight. I ended up cutting the hem from one of my blackout drapes in the darkroom (which was an overstock item from eBay or something, dark blue over black).
     
  3. Patrick Robert James

    Patrick Robert James Subscriber

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    Good to know Barry. What fabric stores are you talking about?

    I block a window with blackout curtain material which is paradoxically white. Works fine with no leaks.
     
  4. OP
    barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    Sorry The material I reported on is not light tight.
     
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    barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    Yes, it is fine for windows, but it is too thick to make bellows from. Tried that, it didn't work. Thanks though.

    Barry
     
  6. howardpan

    howardpan Subscriber

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    Maybe you can check out Custom Bellows from the U.K. They provide a very nice product.

    http://www.custombellows.co.uk/
     
  7. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    I used an old changing bag to make mine.


    Steve.
     
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    barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    I completed my bellows with the piece I had. Thank you.
     
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    barryjyoung

    barryjyoung Member

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    Hi Steve:

    You had a changing bag large enough to make an 11x14 bellows? Man this bellows was huge. The fabric that it took to make it was 52 inches by 72 inches. That is one humongous changing bag.
    Thank you

    Barry
     
  10. Theo Sulphate

    Theo Sulphate Member

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    Very nice - thank you for the link!
     
  11. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    No. It was only 5x4. But if the material exists, there must be a supplier somewhere.


    Steve.
     
  12. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    have you checked with a current bellows maker? I thought bellows are made of silicon-coatedpaper.
     
  13. fdonadio

    fdonadio Subscriber

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    From a marvelous document by J. B. Harlin I got some time ago:

    "What is needed is a light, thin, strong material that is 100% light proof. This is a tough bill to fill. We were lucky to find a local fabric store that had in stock a black, 100 denier Nylon, that was vulcanized on one side."

    Emphasis mine. A quick search showed that vulcanized (rubberized) nylon isn't easy to find, but polyurethane-coated nylon is little bit easier. I've read about vulcanized polyester being used for blackout curtains, so that may be suitable for bellows. I guess the important part is keeping the weight of the fabric around 100 Denier, so it's not too thick and will fold neatly. PU-coting will make your bellows water-proof too.

    Remember you'll have to use another kind of fabric for the inner side (again, from the same document):

    "We use a light weight, near flat black, cotton fabric for the inner lining which we purchase from a local fabric store."​

    So, for the lining, you need something flatter and it doesn't need to be 100% light-proof.

    I would consider a visit to a good fabrics shop.


    Cheers,
    Flavio
     
  14. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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  15. AgX

    AgX Member

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    You likely meant silicone. No, that would make no sense.
    Silicone-coated paper is intented as release paper. Be it for adhesive foils or baked goods.
     
  16. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    I use leather bellows.