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Christopher Walrath

LF checklist

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by , 12-04-2013 at 08:52 PM (2852 Views)
Just a checklist. Not a wishlist. Unless... But I just wanted to post my list here.

So. I will be having a 4x5 on the way. I also need to round up the following...

Have or will have
180 lens
All darkroom gear for tray processing and enlarging including Beseler 57MT

Need to get

Longer lens (200-300 range)
Shutter release cable
Focusing cloth
Changing bag
Developing other than tray (ie. Jobo tank, Nikor tank or tanks and hangers)
(Should I get into BTZS tubes? Not familiar)
Case (camera and other stuff)
Camera focusing loupe
Good filters (exposure)
Good paper cutter

List to be lengthened perhaps and updated. Suggestions are welcome. Been a while.

Updated 12-04-2013 at 09:01 PM by Christopher Walrath



  1. Jerevan's Avatar
    Developing tank: Cibachrome or a Jobo 2840 tank. The Cibas are inexpensive and very economical (about 150 ml soup if I recall correctly).
  2. Christopher Walrath's Avatar
    Will take that under advisement, Jerevan. Thank you for the recommendation.
  3. Gregg Obst's Avatar
    If you don't already have them for your lens(es) you will need lens boards. You didn't mention if you are getting a monorail/field camera/press camera but depending on what you plan on shooting and if you want to do any location shooting you will need to figure out your carrying bag strategy (hard case, soft case, backpack, rolling toolbag, etc). You will also want lens wraps to protect your lenses mounted on lens boards for traveling (if traveling with multiple lenses). You can find good deals on lens boards and lens wraps at KEH.com. Some people have used soft sided bags made for fly fishing reels to transport lenses on lens boards.

    The BTZS brand focusing clothes available from the viewcamerastore.com are really nice because they have elastic that allows them to snuggly git over the rear standard and they work much better in wind than a traditional flat focusing cloth.

    Welcome to the world of 4x5 !
  4. Gregg Obst's Avatar
    Oh, and get a ground glass protector that slides over the ground glass. That will protect the ground glass from breaking while transporting. The view camera store has those as well. The ones made for the Canham wood 4x5 work well for any 4x5.
  5. Mark_S's Avatar
    Christopher -
    A few random comments:
    Walmart carries focusing cloths - they call them 'hoodies' - My wife got me one of the expensive ones from viewcamerastore.com and they are very nice too.

    I prefer a changing tent to a bag for 4x5. It really helps to have the room to move your hands around inside the tent.

    I've developed many different ways for 4x5. I now use a Jobo, but was quite happy with hangers for a long time. I went through a phase with BTZS tubes, and those work too. One nice thing about BTZS and HC-110, is that you can adjust contrast with dilution, which allows you to customize development on a sheet by sheet basis, even while processing 6 sheets at a time. I never bonded with tray development of negatives.
  6. dodphotography's Avatar
    be mindful of the head you're using for your rig... it's an often overlooked aspect of a tripod.
  7. paul_c5x4's Avatar
    On the subject of focusing cloths - It is worth getting a dress maker's tape sewn along one edge. When you do macro photography, you will always have a tape to hand to measure bellows extension, and if you use John Cook's method, no excuses.



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