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  1. #21
    Klainmeister's Avatar
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    Coming from my Graflex to the Tachihara is great leap in build and control. I just did the move, and the Tach is lighter, easier to setup, and a joy to use.

    I got mine for reasonable price. Look under Zone Vi on Ebay.
    K.S. Klain

  2. #22
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    Bethe- If the Tachihara is on your list, keep a look out for a Calumet Wood Field. It's a re-branded Tachihara, and usually goes for less on the used market. I've had one for about 30 years. It's a great traveler, and has held up very well.

  3. #23
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    Oh sure, shoulda expected it. Had my mind narrowed down to two and now the list has grown. Thanks all for the great advice! I'll get searching on ebay, I guess. Though there is still the lure of a new one (the last camera I bought new was in about 2000). Sturdy and light is the key - I'm not very muscular and like to go into the woods.

  4. #24
    Roger Cole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moopheus View Post
    I was going to add that one of the drawbacks of the Shen Hao is the need for a recessed board with wide-angle lenses. A 90mm with a recessed board is probably about the shortest it will take. I like my Super Angulon, but it sounds like this will be less of an issue for you.
    Really? Even with the bag bellows??

    I'm looking to replace my aged and ailing Technika III some time this year and have also been looking at the Tachihara, Shen and Chamonix. One thing I don't like about the Chamonix is that the bellows is not IR safe, and I have several boxes of Efke IR820 unopened in the freezer that I will definitely want to use.

    I also have a 90mm Angulon which will go on my new Wanderlust Travelwide and be replaced with something with a bit more coverage for the "big" camera - I like 90mm on 4x5, and would like something shorter for use with a RF back, so the fact the Shen and Chamonix take a bag bellows is an advantage over the Tachihara.

  5. #25
    LJH
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moopheus View Post
    I was going to add that one of the drawbacks of the Shen Hao is the need for a recessed board with wide-angle lenses. A 90mm with a recessed board is probably about the shortest it will take. I like my Super Angulon, but it sounds like this will be less of an issue for you.
    Depends on which model.

    I use a 72mm on a standard board on my XPO with (Sinar) bag bellow. Also use a 210mm with the same bag. My XPO will also extend to 400+mm.

  6. #26

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    How small does a AS Discovery pack down? The rail is pretty short and the extensions come in different sizes.
    W.A. Crider

  7. #27
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    I'm chiming in only because this has not been mentioned as yet, and may be a possible solution to what you are looking for.
    It has been on my list of potential portable 4x5 cameras for some time, but am still using my Super Graphic, and now Sinar C, which meet my current 4x5 needs.

    It is the TOHO FC-45X and I can't add anything to what Kerry Thalmann had to say about it.

    Good luck.
    David

  8. #28
    TheFlyingCamera's Avatar
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    The Shen-Hao HZX will take a 90 on a flat board and can focus it to infinity with just the standard bellows, although you'll basically have no movements because the bellows are extremely compressed. Add in the bag bellows (a $100 accessory, and well worth it) and you can use a 75mm on a flat board. You might well be able to use shorter lenses than that, but I don't know as I never had anything wider than 75mm.

  9. #29
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    Instead of replacing 4x5 cameras with different brands, I accumulate them. After half a century of that, side by side comparisons are convenient. For minimum weight, an Imba Ikeda (or Tachihara or other similar cameras) is the lightest and the prettiest. It handles lenses from 65 to 250mm on Linhof style flat boards. Its light weight is insignificant in a 14 pound kit with DS film holders, four lenses, and other accessories in a hard case with a tripod head mounted on it for low camera positions. For convenience a press camera is often the handiest, with Speed Graphic being the standard. The MPP or Linhof technical cameras are more versatile than the SG, and usually more expensive. Even late B&J press cameras have a few advantages. For decades an inexpensive B&J flatbed sufficed. It is bulky and heavy; more noticeable now than when bought 40 years ago. With press and field cameras available, I rarely use monorails outdoors. An important consideration for anyone contemplating several brands is interchangeability of lens boards. The move to proprietary boards from the once ubiquitous 4" boards is unfortunate. Mounting all lenses on Linhof boards and adapting other cameras to this size may be the most practical.

  10. #30
    Roger Cole's Avatar
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    The Tachihara can focus a 65mm on a flat board? The Shen HZX bellows is fully compressed with a 90 on a flat board?

    I'm about to talk myself back into the Tach. It would be nice to be able to go even shorter than 65 for use with a rollfilm back, but one can't have everything in one camera.

    How much trouble is swapping the bellows on the Shen, and what is the LONGEST lens that can focus (infinity I guess) with the bag? I'm wondering if it might be practical for me to just leave the bag on it. My longest lens currently is a 203 Ektar, though I'd like something longer, but I know anything longer will need the regular bellows (and probably the Ektar. I'm guessing maybe 150 or so is max with the bag?)

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