6x12 Panoramic Kit (Horseman back, 4x5 field camera)
6x12 PANORAMIC KIT / 4x5 FIELD CAMERA
I have a LARGE FORMAT field camera kit, with an (expensive) HORSEMAN 6x12 PANORAMIC ROLL FILM BACK, which I'd like to trade for Nikon equipment, or a portable telescope, or... a good electric guitar. (Why not.)
The Super Graphic, if you're not familiar with it, is very similar to the Toyo 45A field camera – Toyo bought the tooling from Graflex. This photo nicely demonstrates the ability of the front standard to tilt, rise and swing. (Shift is also possible.) I've put up a web gallery of more images at:
What this kit gives you, essentially, is the same functionality as a Horseman SW-612 Pro set-up ($7478.90 at B&H!), for a fraction of the cost. Make that *more* functionality: not only tilt, shift, rise and swings, but a full 4x5 field camera as well. Like the Horseman, this camera functions perfectly hand-held – and unlike the Horseman, it comes with a rangefinder. This gives you a good idea of what can be accomplished with this setup:
I'm hoping to trade for Nikon glass for my D700, or perhaps another (FX) body. Also a high-end portable telescope, or a truly good electric guitar of some flavor. Will consider anything interesting, but specifically looking for:
- Nikkor AF 24-70/2.8
- Sigma Macro of some flavor (70, 150, 180)
- various Voigtlander and Zeiss lenses in Nikon mount
- Nikkor 180mm f/2.8D AF ED-IF (the most recent version)
- Nikkor MF 180/2.8 ED-IF
- Nikkor AF 85/1.4
- would also consider a D300 or D90 body as part of a trade
- portable high-quality astronomical telescope (Questar, Celestron, Meade, etc.)
Here's a full description of the kit:
An all-metal Super Graphic, upgraded with a Maxwell Hi-Lux focusing screen. This remains an excellent – and unique – portable 4x5: it will, for instance, take 90mm lenses without requiring an adapter, and even wider if you want to go with a small vintage 65mm. The camera is in excellent working condition – cosmetically it has a few dings etc. on the outside; nothing serious. The Maxwell screen has a few minor marks. Here's a good site on Super Graphics: http://www.cameraquest.com/supergrp.htm
HORSEMAN 6x12 ROLL FILM BACK:
Converts a large format (4x5) camera with a Graflok back into a 6x12 panoramic. There are only four available options to do this: the fabulously expensive Sinar and Linhof backs (both around four grand); the Calumet, which has film flatness problems; and this Horseman, which is elegant and well-made, and sells at B&H for $1054.90. It has been used maybe five times (and, for what it's worth, I sold the second image I took with it to Rolling Stone – so it has good karma).
Modern Rodenstock APO Sironar-N (150mm). Classic Kodak glass: the 203mm f7.7 Ektar (super-sharp). Both lenses are legendary; some people consider the Sironar the finest lens made, especially for bokeh; the 203mm is one of the truly great vintage optics. The Sironar and shutter are in near new condition. The Ektar is in great shape (but old, of course); the shutter was good last I checked – might need oiling. If you decide to use the rangefinder, I have cams for both of the lenses, I seem to remember. The camera has lens stops on the rails, properly adjusted for both lenses; and a third set for any lens you might add.
I also have a Photoflex collapsible light-tight mini-tent for loading holders (mint), and two 4x5 film holders (new).
There really is no other way to get into professional panoramic photography at anywhere near this price. It was not easy to put together this precise combination of equipment and to upgrade it properly – I'm only trading it away because I went completely digital soon after buying it.