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  1. #1
    Ty G

    The never-ending bellows fabric question

    The thin darkroom cloth... Porter's quit carrying it, then Freestyle Photo picked it up, now they don't have it; and Freestyle told me that the company "delta" has stopped making it.

    I know Turner bellows calls their fabric "vinyl impregnated neoprene" What is this?, Google gives me nothing.

    P.S. the commando cloth that some companies are selling is really thick and not completely lightproof (I tried a sample).

    So, does anyone know of a THIN lightproof fabric? It would most likely be rubber or vinyl coated on one side.

    Thanks, Ty

  2. #2
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    That is not good info. I went to McMaster Carr and personally checked all the rubberized cloth they had and non of it was suitable for a bellows. Way to thick and not light tight.

  3. #3

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    What about a nice, high quality thin leather?

  4. #4
    Curt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeteZ8 View Post
    What about a nice, high quality thin leather?
    I'd be tempted to give that a try, the Kodak 2D 8x10 I'm restoring has a leather bellows and it folds like a glove and only has one small tear near the bellows frame that can easily be repaired, not that the bellows is bad but it was caused by the former user.
    Everytime I find a film or paper that I like, they discontinue it. - Paul Strand - Aperture monograph on Strand

  5. #5
    Ty G
    Leather is not a good route to go if you are relying on that being your "lightproof" layer. Leather has lots of very small pinholes that tend to enlarge a little as time goes on. Now if you have a good inside layer, it is very nice looking.

  6. #6

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    My Kodak 2D has leather bellows, but the inner layer is cloth, even when the leather corners are cracked it is light tight.

  7. #7
    Curt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anton Lukoszevieze View Post
    My Kodak 2D has leather bellows, but the inner layer is cloth, even when the leather corners are cracked it is light tight.
    I took a look a while ago and the one I have is cloth lined also. If the leather is not lightproof then it's back to the question of obtaining a lightproof material for the entire bellow or a liner.
    Everytime I find a film or paper that I like, they discontinue it. - Paul Strand - Aperture monograph on Strand

  8. #8
    mr rusty's Avatar
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    never had any need for bellows fabric, but has anyone experimented with making any by perhaps laminating a woven fabric with maybe a thin flexible heat sensitive vinyl sheet- that's easily available in many thicknesses and colours for making up heat-welded plastic blow up toys. I think I would be doing some experimenting - don't muck up the household clothes iron tho!

    Something like arbetex might be good as well - its a cloth backed "synthetic leather" coated material and would almost certainly be light tight. might be a bit soft though but could be easily laminated to a stiffening material. http://www.hewit.com/acatalog/Cloth.html

    just a thought
    Last edited by mr rusty; 10-17-2009 at 04:46 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  9. #9

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    Shutter curtain cloth.
    http://www.aki-asahi.com/store/html/...er-curtain.php
    They say it's available in large sizes. Did not try myself.

  10. #10
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    When making a 'single layer' bellows, I used thin 'tissue' paper (craft type, not "Kleenex") on the inside. Otherwise glue on the inside of the bellows material between the ribs can stick together when it is folded up (if you are using contact glue).

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