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  1. #1
    jimgalli's Avatar
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    Avoiding LF becuse it's too expensive?? (Oh NO. Another bottom feeder thread)

    I marvel at what can be had at the auction site for about the cost of 2 tanks of gasoline! I bid on this funky old B&J 5X7 because honestly, I need some Packard Shutters and they seem to fetch about the same as this whole camera did.



    It arrived last night and clearly it has sat in some hot rafters unprotected for probably 35 years. The glue holding the bellows to the front had given up and it was VERY dirty, and slightly rusty. I paid $56. On closer examination though I discovered a fairly late 1950's to mid 1960's Burke & James 5X7 complete with a much older Bausch & Lomb 5X7 Tessar Ic f6.3 barrel lens. Probably sold by B&J on the same day. Even though these cameras aren't on anybody's dream camera list, I didn't have the heart to canibalize it.

    Stay with me, the next part will make you smile. I filled the darkroom sink with hot soapy water..........and gave it a bath. Took it apart and gave everything except the lens and packard a good scrub with a soft brush. In Nevada where I live I can get away with that. It was 95 degrees yesterday afternoon with relative humidity of around 4%. After I scrubbed, I simply toweled off and let the pieces sit on the pickup tailgate to finish drying which takes less than 5 minutes.

    When all the pieces were clean, I got the Carnauba wax and some WD-40 and re-assembled each piece with any wood-wood or wood-metal surfaces getting some wax, and any metal-metal surfaces getting some lube. I glued the bellows back to the front standard with contact cement and Voila! It was ready to make fine art contact prints in a little under 2 hours.







    I called a high school pal that has been chomping at the bit to give the LF photos a try and told him I had a camera for him. He's a far better artist by accident than I ever will be on purpose so I'm excited to see what this old camera will do!
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

    http://tonopahpictures.0catch.com

  2. #2
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Nice work, Jim!
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  3. #3
    Andy K's Avatar
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    Great job! The camera looks wonderful now. I too am not averse to doing a wee bit of cleaning to ebay wins which have been unloved for a few years.

    Ps. $56 for two tanks of gas? Whats the postage on that to the UK?


    -----------My Flickr-----------
    Anáil nathrach, ortha bháis is beatha, do chéal déanaimh.

  4. #4
    jimgalli's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy K
    Ps. $56 for two tanks of gas? Whats the postage on that to the UK?
    Uhh-Err. You're right. Make that 1 tank of gas. 20 gallons for the typical US gas guzzler SUV @ $2.80 gallon.
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

    http://tonopahpictures.0catch.com

  5. #5

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    Does anyone know what posessed makers to paint so many of these battleship gray? Sure, the wood underneath is no prize but why go the extra mile to paint them?

  6. #6
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Whoever it was was considered such a genius that he was hired away by Linhof to design the tan covering for the 1970s Technikas and all the matching equipment of that era (tripods, backs, copy stands, studio stands--all tan). I believe this same person worked for Gucci briefly, designing two-tone tan and white patent leather shoes for men.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  7. #7
    Dave Wooten's Avatar
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    nice job,

    I saw a few years back, a B and J that had had the grey paint removed and it was refinished....I think it was maple and looked lovely.

  8. #8
    eric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimgalli


    ahhhh it was YOU who won this! I watching it and then I looked at the "ENDED" auctions and it was over. Great job! Looks nice.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Wooten
    nice job,

    I saw a few years back, a B and J that had had the grey paint removed and it was refinished....I think it was maple and looked lovely.
    Maple? What a beautiful wood, but it seems unlikely. Back then, and earlier wood was just the most feasible material and lower-end camera makers didn't even try to match grain. Some kind of mahogony was typical.

  10. #10
    lee
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    JJ,

    it really is maple. I had a gray one and stripped the paint to find the maple wood underneath.


    lee\c

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