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jimgalli
04-11-2007, 10:42 AM
There are six 7x11 film holders currently in the classifieds.


Will's too modest to add a link (http://www.apug.org/classifieds/showproduct.php?product=3670&sort=1&cat=2&page=5), but I will :D:D Good deal.

jnanian
04-11-2007, 10:47 AM
hi mike

i am not the typical 7x11 user, and i don't really have a typical 7x11
camera+holders. i picked up a 11x14 studio camera ( the big ones on the
rolling iron+wood stand ) in the fall, and i have been shooting a little bit
with that. i made a 7x11 reducer (piece of paper inside the camera). i
don't have the $$ for film, just a lot of expired paper, so i have been
shooting paper negatives. the holder is a home made one (eventually i will
have more than just one). it was made with foamcore and 2ply matboard,
and the back of the camera is made of the same thing together with a piece
of waxed paper instead of ground glass.

while i would love to take the camera on the road, and away from the
studio i shoot it in, i am enjoying myself just the same. i really like the
vertical shape of the format. it isn't as wide + boxy as a full 11x14 sheet
( or 8x10 ) and the long and narrowness is great for shooting portraits,
kind of like a 5x7 but better :) .

i can only imagine a non-studio camera dedicated to shooting 7x11,
it would be the perfect panoramic/portrait/ulf,sort of - but not- format.

good luck!

john

photomc
04-11-2007, 10:16 PM
Really GREAT!! info guys, I really appreciate the input - now to digest it all. Had not considered the rail camera option - Kerry a couple of really nice looking cameras.

One of the best attributes of online communities like this is the giving of thoughts that come from so many people.

Thanks!!

photomc
04-11-2007, 10:38 PM
OK, a bit embarrassed to say I know very little of what I need to look for in a rail camera if I were to attempt to build a 7x11. Would a 4x5 rail and front standard work for this - any hints on what to look for or where to gather more info (plan to study Kerry's Swiss Lotus)?

ReallyBigCameras
04-12-2007, 12:17 AM
What I do have is a couple 7x11 Eastman holders, with a couple more on the way that I purchased last week on the British eBay. Once they arrive, I'll probably send them all off to Alan Brubaker to get them rebuilt, light tight and ready to use.

My three "new to me" 7x11 Eastman holder arrived today. They are defintely not usable as is, but all are complete. So, hopefully they can be rebuilt by someone like Alan Brubaker. They all need reglued, refinished, new hinge tape and the light traps rebuilt. One has a cracked darkslide.

I got out my other two holders to compare dimensions and condition and had a little surprise. My two previous 7x11 holder are clearly labeled Ansco, not Eastman as I had thought. They've been stored away in a cabinet since I bought them and this is the first time I've had them out since they were purchased. The good news is that all the dimensions seem to be compatible between my Ansco and Eastman holders. The Ansco holders are in much better shape and can probably be used as is - although one does have a slightly warped darkslide that I'll probably replace.

So, does this mean Agfa/Ansco also made a 7x11 camera, or did they just make holders for the Eastman and Korona cameras?

Has anyone ever had any holders rebuilt/refurbished by Alan Brubaker? I think I remember Oren mentioning it at one point. Of course, I'll contact Alan to discuss his current prices and schedule, but if anyone has had similar work done, I'd love to know if you were pleased with the work and if it was worth the expense/wait. In other words, were the holders smooth operating and light tight afterwards and would you do it again or just save you're money for some new holders?

Thanks,
Kerry

Steve_7x
04-12-2007, 12:31 AM
The 7x11 back I mentioned that was made to go on an 8x10 was an Ansco... so yes they did and yes it is surprising as I have only seen Korona and Eastmans on epay.

Steve

Oren Grad
04-12-2007, 12:46 AM
Has anyone ever had any holders rebuilt/refurbished by Alan Brubaker? I think I remember Oren mentioning it at one point.

I think my 7x11 Eastman holders may actually have been cleaned up by Alan, but not while I've owned them. But I did have him fix up some 6.5x8.5 Eastman holders.

The most important part of the work is that he made new darkslides for all of the holders, though he preserved the little wooden handles from the old darkslides and attached them to the new slide material. The only minor quibble is that I have to be a bit careful manipulating the darkslides, because the handles themselves and their attachment are a bit on the dainty side.

I forget the exact cost now, though I recall it was something on the order of $70-80 per holder. This was several years ago, so cost may be higher now. As usual with Alan, it took several months to get them back. I consider the investment worth every penny - the holders he fixed up are cleaner and work more smoothly than any of my non-refurbished Eastmans, and that batch is now my standard working set for my American cameras. (I have a separate set of matching Tachihara holders for the Rittreck adapter back.)

Re refurbished vs new holders, no doubt the prospect of new Fotoman holders at an attractive price will affect a calculation re 6.5x8.5 today. As for 7x11, though, the cost of refurbishing is likely to be far less than the cost of having new ones made from scratch. Also, the old Eastman holders are extremely lightweight. Based on experience with various other formats I'd guess that a 7x11 S&S would be substantially heavier. I don't know about Lotus.

Oren Grad
04-12-2007, 12:53 AM
The 7x11 back I mentioned that was made to go on an 8x10 was an Ansco... so yes they did and yes it is surprising as I have only seen Korona and Eastmans on epay.

The marvelous Field Cameras of the United States (http://www.fiberq.com/cam/) site does not list a 7x11 model in its Scovill/Ansco-Agfa section. But there is a mysterious gap in their coverage of the Ansco-Agfa line for the period 1900-1930, which is just where one would have expected to see such a model. So maybe there was one.

ReallyBigCameras
04-12-2007, 12:58 AM
OK, a bit embarrassed to say I know very little of what I need to look for in a rail camera if I were to attempt to build a 7x11. Would a 4x5 rail and front standard work for this - any hints on what to look for or where to gather more info (plan to study Kerry's Swiss Lotus)?

Mike,

As you may have gathered, my favorite camera for these types of projects is the ARCA-SWISS. The modular nature of the ARCA-SWISS lends itself well to such modifcations. You're really limited only by your imagination. I'm currently using an F-Line chassis as the basis for all my cameras from 4x5 - 7x17. I've combined various newer and older parts to get the exact configurations I want.

Newer style ARCA-SWISS cameras aren't very plentiful on the used market. Most people that buy them keep them. When they do show up used, they tend to fetch a pretty penny. They are definitely worth the money. They are well designed and superbly built. If you can't afford a new or used F-Line, a used Discovery is a good place to start. It's completely compatible with all the other F-Line and M-Line accessories. It is no longer available new, but when it was it was about 90% of an F-Line for about 60% of the cost. I always considered it a "best buy" in the world of new large format cameras. Used Discoverys seem to go for $800 - $1000 depending on the condition, configuration and what accessories are included.

If that's still too much, the older pre F-Line ARCA cameras are plentiful and very affordable on the used market. They share many of the functional advantages of the newer models, but aren't quite as well made or durable. Still, in good condition, they are VERY usable comeras and can be great bargains. Some parts, like the rails, are even compatible with the newer models (bellows are not, however, interchangeable between the old and new models). This was how I got started into the ARCA-SWISS system. I bought an older model ARCA-SWISS in very nice condition for $350. That camera served as the basis for the first incarnation of my 4x10 Swiss Lotus. I liked the ARCA-SWISS system so much, I sold my Linhof Technikardan TK45S (nice camera, but not modular and expandable like the ARCA) and bought a 4x5 F-Line system.

Over the years, ARCA has had a few different format frame sizes. There is the original 171mm size, the 110mm size that was originally developed for their 6x9 camera, and the much more recent 141mm size. I use a 110mm front standard for my 4x10 conversion (and my 4x5), but use a 171mm front end on my 7x17. It's bigger, studier and able to accomodate the big lenses used for shooting ULF. I also have a 171mm-110mm lensboard adapter so I can share lenses between the two standards. For 7x11, I would recommend the 171mm standard - especially if you're on a tight budget. This is the most common size available on the used market, in both older and newer models. It's the size I'll use if I build a 7x11 conversion kit.

One of the other nice things about the ARCA system is how small it collapses for transportation. I've never seen any other 7x17 camera that collapses as compactly as my Franken-ARCA. This is made possible by the telescoping rail design. I always use a short 15cm rail section to stow the front and rear standards on when collapsed. I combine this with appropriate extension brackets and rails depending on what format I'm shooting. For my 4x10 (and 4x5), that's a 30cm extension bracket and another 15cm rail section. For the 7x17, I use an older 40cm extension bracket (that came with my original $350camera) and a current style 40cm rail section. The older cameras usually came stock with a 40cm rail and a 40cm extension bracket. If you get one of these, you can cut the 40cm rail into 15cm and 25cm sections to make it more compact when collapsed - and get more longer bellows draw by extending the two halfs in opposite directions. You can see how this works in the photos of my 7x17 camera (in that case it's a 15cm section with a full 40cm section to give me the extension needed for this ULF format).

Obviously, I'm heavily invested in the ARCA-SWISS system at this point. So, that's what I know the most about. The Sinar cameras, both older (Norma) and newer (F and P models) are also well built and more plentiful and generally less expensive on the used market. They lack the telescoping rail system of the ARCA. So, they don't collapse as compactly for transport. Perhaps someone with more Sinar experience can chime in with some advice on what models and options to look for in a camera to serve as the basis for his type of conversion project.

Kerry

ReallyBigCameras
04-12-2007, 01:13 AM
The 7x11 back I mentioned that was made to go on an 8x10 was an Ansco... so yes they did and yes it is surprising as I have only seen Korona and Eastmans on epay.

Interesting. I've never seen one either, but now that I know they exist, I'll keep my eyes open.

Kerry

ReallyBigCameras
04-12-2007, 01:24 AM
I forget the exact cost now, though I recall it was something on the order of $70-80 per holder. This was several years ago, so cost may be higher now. As usual with Alan, it took several months to get them back. I consider the investment worth every penny - the holders he fixed up are cleaner and work more smoothly than any of my non-refurbished Eastmans, and that batch is now my standard working set for my American cameras.

Oren,

Thanks for the info. I'll probably just box up all five holders and send them off to Alan for an estimate. Since I don't have a 7x11 camera yet, I can be patient while he does his magic.


Also, the old Eastman holders are extremely lightweight. Based on experience with various other formats I'd guess that a 7x11 S&S would be substantially heavier. I don't know about Lotus.

Good point. I just weighed my 7x11 holders. The Ansco holders are even lighter than the Eastmans. They averaged 16.5 oz. each and the Eastmans averaged 17.5 oz. For comparison purposes, modern Fidelity 8x10 holders, with plastic darkslides weigh 21 oz. The ones with the metal darkslides are even heavier. I don't have one handy to weigh, but I seem to recall they are in the 25 - 26 oz. range. I also believe the 8x10 Toyo holders are a bit heavier than the standard Fidelity 8x10 holders. Somewhere in the 23 - 24 oz. range I believe. For further comparison purpose, my 4x10 Lotus holders weigh about 10.75 - 11 oz. each compared to 13 oz. for a 4x10 Canham holder. These differences aren't huge, but when carrying multiple 7x11 holders, a difference of 4 - 5 oz. per holder lets you carry five holders instead of four for the same weight.

Kerry

photomc
04-12-2007, 09:05 AM
Kerry, Thanks for the detailed information. One thing did want to share, is Alan DOES show new 7x11 holders on his site for $275. So, first things first find FH, then find parts.

jimgalli
04-12-2007, 09:27 AM
Having never seen an Ansco 7X11 camera that would have competed with the Eastman and the Korona, I have to wonder if the Ansco offering was limited to a back and holders for it's extensive Studio Camera systems.

Oren Grad
04-12-2007, 12:14 PM
One thing did want to share, is Alan DOES show new 7x11 holders on his site for $275.

Just so there's no confusion: Alan's listing doesn't mean he necessarily has any of the listed sizes in stock - it's what he would charge if/when he were to build a batch. In most cases there will be a wait of several months.

Harrigan
04-12-2007, 12:16 PM
Kerry, Thanks for the detailed information. One thing did want to share, is Alan DOES show new 7x11 holders on his site for $275. So, first things first find FH, then find parts.

I noticed lens and repro has a set of 6 7x11 holders and a back to work with them for sale. Normally they are very pricey but this set is reasonable considering what the other 7x11's go for. However the fh are very old and I would guess will require a full tune up to be light tight. I must say the Brubaker holders will certainly blow away any antique ones you can find.

photomc
05-26-2007, 08:42 PM
Well about 6 weeks later, and somehow a Eastman No. 2 7x11 ended up on my doorstep today :) One very happy camper, 7x11 back, 8x10 back (made for the 7x11 camera) and a home made (it appears anyhow) 5x7 back. The thing is a beast, but not as large as the 11x14 cameras that I have seen (which fits my criteria). A very kind member here made me a good deal on some 7x11 wood holders (yeah compared to modern 8x10's they are light).

Cut a couple of lens boards this afternoon, and mounted the 240mm Germinar lens in one. The view from the 7x11 back is pure joy (IMO), and the 240 seems to cover with a little movement.

The 7x11 back is a bit tight when inserting the film holder, so it either needs to be used or adjusted is my guess. Considering sending the back to Richard Ritter to see if he can fit a bail back to it (which would make it much easier to use - IMO). Since I plan to shoot with this beast and not look at it, the few nicks do not bother me at all (after all it is close to 100 years old).

Kerry (or anyone else) would love to hear some thoughts about lens in the 300-305mm that will cover. thinking about a 305 G-Claron, but wondering if a Fuji 300mm C f/8.5 will cover. Just something in a Copal #1 (no since in adding more weight).

may have paid too much for it but it, but then figure it will make me more than happy. if it becomes to heavy, or a pain to use can always sell it. did I mention how really nice the image looked on the ground glass :)

Colin Graham
05-27-2007, 10:28 AM
Congrats, seems like a great format. I've been trying to decide between 7x11, 7x9.5 and full plate. Any difficulties getting film or are you using paper negs?

wfwhitaker
05-27-2007, 12:32 PM
Aha! So it was you!

Virtually any lens which will cover 8x10 will cover 7x11. The diagonal is only six millimeters more. A 10 1/2" Dagor is very nice; it's the "long side of the format", a perspective I like.

The front lensboard arrangement looks very awkward extending as it does beyond the front standard and giving you something else to snag the camera on. What size are the boards? I had one (I think it was a 2D, actually) and replaced the front sliding lensboard with one I made which would accept 5 1/4" lensboards. 6" boards would've been nice, but a bit tricky with almost no clearance left at the top and bottom. As it was, I had to put the lensboard sliders on either side. But a 5 1/4" board will accommodate a #5 Ilex shutter so you can use something like a 10" WF Ektar if you want. But you already have the Germinar... Anyway, something to think about if you send the camera to Richard.

I've attached a couple of photos of that camera which show how I approached the lensboard issue. The bellows is from Western Bellows. Very nice bellows, but it took a while to get. There's also a not-very-good photo of a rather familiar scene taken with that camera. :)

It's a great format. I hope Fotoman's efforts with the full plate holders are successful so we might convince him to make some 7x11 holders to the Eastman spec.

photomc
05-27-2007, 01:15 PM
Colin - will be using paper negs for now to try it out, but plan to cut 11x14 film down to 7x11. When the next call goes out for a special run to 7x11 will order some then. Also, need to contact someone at Fotoimpex to see if they can provide 7x11 (man I miss JandC).

Will - yeah, it was me!! Thanks for the lens info, thought that would be correct, but try not to assume too much.

The front lensboard will take some getting used to. So far have not figured out how to get the darn thing off. Removed the thumb screw that holds it in place, but there is a stop on each side that keeps it from sliding out completely. Guess it was pretty great idea for making 2 5x7's on one negative and gives some shift (in a strange kind of way). The slider board is roughly 61/2 by 14. This one has been modified (early mod it looks like) to take a board that is approximately 4 3/8 x 4 5/16 - pretty much the same size as my Eastman No. 1 5x7. Think a slider could be cut to fit the width of the front standard (no over hang) and then just not use the slider function.

I have one of the Ilex/Caltar 375mm in a #5 Ilex already mounted on a 5 1/4 board (the B&J and Korona are very close), so good thought about asking Richard about that.

Would love to have picked up your S&S holders, but could not justify the $ plus the camera (though it is a very good deal) - sigh!! Pretty excited about the camera, and can't wait to run some film through it.

One funny thing last night was checking the bellows to see how bad they are (yes there are pin holes, but really nothing I can't repair until later, or use a darkcloth) and the light was just coming out of the front standard. Could not figure it out, then found this hold on the top of the front standard and I was scratching my head wondering why on earth someone would drill a hold there....it hit me later that it was for a Packard shutter...duh!!

Thanks Guys!!

photomc
05-27-2007, 01:40 PM
Wow!! Thanks for the pics Will! That is exactly what I was thinking about for the lens board. Looks great to me. Good to hear someone that has the Western Bellows, as I know that is coming sooner than later - still have the old red leather on mine right now.

As for that familiar scene looks good to me, think you are a bit to modest. Would be great if we can talk Fotoman into making some 7x11 holders, there seem to be more 7x11 shooter than I thought or they all must post here ;)