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  1. #1

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    converting graflex rb super 3 1/4" x 4 1/4" to 4" x 5"

    Hello there,
    I have both a graflex rb super 3 1/4" x 4 1/4" and a graflex rb series b 4" x 5". I was wondering if there is a way to modify the 3 1/4" to accept the 4 x 5 back? I realize that the image on the negative would be cropped, but it would be much nicer for me to have just the 4" x 5" to deal with in terms of my local shop that develops the negatives for me (does not like to do the 3 1/4" and the carrier size of my scanner; (epson V700 with only 4 x 5 carrier size), and the better variety of emulsions available in 4 x 5. I would imagine that the ground glass would also have to be masked off as well? Any insight on this would be great and much appreciated!

  2. #2
    EASmithV's Avatar
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    you actually get most of the 4x5 image. There are people who have done this.

    http://johnminnicks.com/

    that guy has done it before
    www.EASmithV.com

    "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera."— Dorothea Lange
    http://www.flickr.com/easmithv/
    RIP Kodachrome

  3. #3

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    I'm currently inquiring Bert Saunders on exactly this topic. Will get back to you when I hear back.

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    Wow... thoughts of butchering another 3x4 Graflex. Why not just go get a 4x5 Graflex?
    Where ever you are, there you be.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by EASmithV View Post
    you actually get most of the 4x5 image. There are people who have done this.

    http://johnminnicks.com/

    that guy has done it before
    Is it just me of does his work look very shoddy? Looks like he enjoys hacking up some nice cameras too.

    The instagram style photos on his site put me off from the start.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by k_jupiter View Post
    Wow... thoughts of butchering another 3x4 Graflex. Why not just go get a 4x5 Graflex?
    Don't know about the OP, but here are my reasons:

    With the 3x4 Graflex

    1. You can't get 3x4 film (or are very limited in options)
    2. You can't shoot 3x4 Polaroid (which is idiotic)
    3. It's smaller than the 4x5 sibling with almost all the coverage of 4x5
    4. The body is short enough to mount the Kodak Aero-Ektar 178mm f2.5 and still get infinity focus (see John Minnick's creations linked to above)
    5. Most importantly, the Graflok mod is 100% reversible

  7. #7
    EASmithV's Avatar
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    I contacted Bert Saunders a week ago, he is no longer in the graflex repair and modification business.
    www.EASmithV.com

    "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera."— Dorothea Lange
    http://www.flickr.com/easmithv/
    RIP Kodachrome

  8. #8

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    thanks for all your input on this subject. I do have the 4 x 5 series b that I enjoy very much. But the automatic iris feature of the super 3 1/4"x 4 1/4" is just great for taking photos of my kids (with them always changing position, never sitting still and all)! I just thought this would be a good avenue to explore because I have looked at getting an auto 4 x 5 and the prices for them are getting pretty silly and way out of my range. I just love using these cameras though. I have a burke and james 4 x 5 that I hardly ever use anymore because these cameras are so much fun.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by pablogustav View Post
    thanks for all your input on this subject. I do have the 4 x 5 series b that I enjoy very much. But the automatic iris feature of the super 3 1/4"x 4 1/4" is just great for taking photos of my kids (with them always changing position, never sitting still and all)! I just thought this would be a good avenue to explore because I have looked at getting an auto 4 x 5 and the prices for them are getting pretty silly and way out of my range. I just love using these cameras though. I have a burke and james 4 x 5 that I hardly ever use anymore because these cameras are so much fun.
    hi pablogustav

    i have a series d (4x5 ) and have been known to chase my kids around the yard with it
    why not sell the camera you have and get one that requires no modifications ?
    you might get what $$ you need for the super ?
    or use a roll back so you don't need to deal with sheet film and holders ?
    ( i have a roll back taped to the back of my series d and use it all the time )

    modifying a 3x4 to 4x5 doesn't seem too difficult. you need to remove the old back
    and probably shim the new one so it is the right distance to focus correctly.
    maybe ... someone who has done this can tell you the right size shims to use
    and all you need is a back, and a screw driver and some lathe ?

    good luck with your fun project !

    john

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by jnanian View Post
    hi pablogustav

    modifying a 3x4 to 4x5 doesn't seem too difficult. you need to remove the old back
    and probably shim the new one so it is the right distance to focus correctly.
    maybe ... someone who has done this can tell you the right size shims to use
    and all you need is a back, and a screw driver and some lathe ?

    good luck with your fun project !

    john
    All,
    Must be a lack of imagination on my part. You want to replace a smaller film holder with a larger one. You can't put a intermediate plate in there as that changes the length from the light beam separation path at the divergence point. You can't mount the larger back on the smaller body unless the mounting points are within the 4x5 frame area.

    Shimming? Shim what? Move the ground glass on the viewing port? Shimming the back compounds the problem.

    Sounds like a hack job to me. Maybe it's just my lack of imagination.

    tim in san jose (no, you cannot have my 3x4 rb)
    Where ever you are, there you be.

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