As some of you probably know, I have been building a 6x12 format camera with a Super Angulon 65mm lens (details in the link at the bottom of this post).
On Sunday I took it out for its trial run with a roll of film. I got home and processed the film.... opened the tank and was presented with six very black frames!
I looked at the camera to try to work out how the light was getting in. I decided that it was the material which I used to make the lens board out of. Although it looked opaque, it must have been passing some light so I stuck some film backing paper to it and went out again last night with another roll of film. This time..... another six black negatives!
I spent a bit more time looking over the camera last night and eventually found the problem. I had used part of an old Olympus lens as a focusing mount and there were two narrow slits allowing light in. I could only really see it by holding it in front of a bright light and moving it around.
Today I filled those gaps with some black silicon and took it out with a third roll of film. The result.... six wonderful wide angle images which I will print, scan and post in the next few days.
Although I haven't printed then yet, it seems that I have sharp focus from very close to infinity with the lens focused at infinity which makes me wonder why I bothered making the focusing mount! My original plan of setting the lens at hyperfocal distance for f16 would have been fine.
Anyway, I'm off to do a little happy dance and perhaps have a celebration beer now!