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  1. #1
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    MF SLR with Focal Plane Shutter and Tilting Movements?

    Hi all, I've been looking around for a while now for what I feel would be an ideal workhorse for the kind of work I do but I'm not sure if exactly what I'm looking for exists. I'm looking for a medium format SLR with a focal plane shutter (or some type on in-body shutter), and tilt/swing/shift movements. I'm just trying to get a comprehensive list of what is out there so that I can A) figure out if what I want really exists and B) figure out what the best option would be.

    I do a lot with homebrew optics so a camera with focal plane shutter is a must. After all its not very easy or cost effective to mount a bunch of homebrew lenses in shutters. Movements are also necessary in that I'd like to be able to put on a normal i.e. non-homebrew lens and mount the camera on a tripod and have perspective control and tilts like I have on my LF view cameras.

    A few possibilities that I know exist:

    Hasselblad Flexbody and Arcbody: From what I know, the Flexbody is quite limited in its movements. The Arcbody on the other hand has a much wider range of movements. I don't believe either has a focal plane shutter, is this true? Is there any focal plane shutter option for Arcbody or do you have to use it with lenses with built in shutters?

    Rollei SL66/ SL66E: I've wanted one of these for a while. I think this has everything I need. Can anyone speak to the range of its tilting mechanism?

    Bronica S2A with tilt/shift bellows attachment: I've seen this online but I don't know much about it and its limits. Also, the bellows are apparently very hard to find and expensive.

    Are there any other options?

    Again, I use view cameras regularly so please don't recommend one as an option as that is not what I'm looking for. I'd very much appreciate any help and recommendations that fit within the parameters of what I'm looking for. Thanks for the help!!
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com

  2. #2
    Luseboy's Avatar
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    I have the bronica and love it! I do not have the bellows attachment, but I do know that they are fairly bulky, rare, and expensive. They sell for about $400 on ebay from what I've seen. However, making one would not be that hard, especially since you can find lenses for it for very cheap, which you could use the mount from.

    Another option to consider is a mamiya rb67. I don't think they have tilt/shift, but they do use bellows for focusing as comes stock. they are also usually pretty inexpensive, I've seen kits with body, lens, and back in good condition go for about 300 bucks.

    I have seen people homebrew lenses on the s2a, the mamiya, and the rollei. A guy on here has a rollei with a petzval mounted on it, pretty cool effect! Honestly, I don't see why you would want to use a medium format camera for this, it seems much more sensable to just use a view camera as you already do... But to each his own. For me anyways, I only use my 4x5 for homebrewed optics

  3. #3

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    A Rollei SL66 will give you plus or minus 8 degrees of tilt from the vertical plane. There are not very many SL66's on the market because there were not that many made.
    There is also a tilt/shift adapter to cope with specialized detail and product shot applications in the telephoto range. The adapter can tilt up to 13 degrees in any direction and can mount view camera lenses with shutter sizes 0 and l from 150 mm focal lengths using the appropriate adapter. Your chances of finding this adapter are probably very slim. Good luck in your search.

  4. #4
    hpulley's Avatar
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    There is no focal plane shutter on the RB67 however you can get a 75mm shift lens for the newest version of the body of the RB67 system, the RB67 Pro-SD. Doesn't sound like it would be what Francesco is looking for unfortunately.

    Edit: Fuji GX680 has movements but leaf shutter so again not good for your DIY lenses.
    Last edited by hpulley; 06-05-2011 at 09:44 PM. Click to view previous post history.
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  5. #5
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fragomeni View Post
    Hi all, I've been looking around for a while now for what I feel would be an ideal workhorse
    For me WORKHORSE equals HORSEMAN. I'd look into the Horseman medium format field cameras with full movements. Why do you need a focal plane shutter?

  6. #6
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    I don't see why you would want to use a medium format camera for this, it seems much more sensable to just use a view camera as you already do... But to each his own.
    Like I said in the original post, I do have view cameras. That is not what I am looking for. The need for a MF system comes from some of the lenses that I make that are designed to be very fast i.e. in the range of f1.9 - f2.4. The way I achieve this is often short focal lengths and large diameter single element lenses. Bottom line is I need MF to serve the various purposes I've identified as necessary in my work. If I could do everything I wanted with LF I wouldn't need to look for a MF camera.

    For me WORKHORSE equals HORSEMAN. I'd look into the Horseman medium format field cameras with full movements. Why do you need a focal plane shutter?
    Actually, my current workhorse is indeed a Horseman. A Horseman 980 to be exact. I love it but it doesn't have the shutter. I need the shutter for the reasons I stated in the original post. I make hombrew lenses and a focal plane shutter would make using these lenses easier as it would alleviate the need and expense of mounting the lenses in shutters which is not even always possible.
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com

  7. #7
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    Regarding the Rollei, how difficult are they to keep up? If not many were made then I'm assuming that means replacement parts are rare and expensive, is this a correct assumption?

    Does anyone have an answer about the Hasselblad Arcbody? Any way to use a focal plane shutter with it?

    So far the Bronica is looking like a nice option.

    I have one lens that I've mounted in a Copal 1 and it works perfectly with the Horseman 980 I have it mounted on but this still leaves several other lenses which can't be mounted in shutters needing a camera that will make them usable. The Horseman just isn't a long term answer to what I need hence the camera search. In the end, since the Horseman has nearly full movements, I may be able to forget about movements in the new MF camera and just go with a standard SLR design which will probably make finding one a lot easier and less expensive i.e Bronica.
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com

  8. #8
    polyglot's Avatar
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    I don't know how much movement you need, but a Speed Graphic has a focal plane shutter and I reckon you could put a rollfilm back on it.

  9. #9
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    Yea, I've got plenty of Speed Graphics. They don't fit the bill. I'm looking for an SLR.
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com

  10. #10
    TheFlyingCamera's Avatar
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    The Arcbody does not have a focal plane shutter- it takes Hasselblad V-system lenses which were all leaf-shuttered in lens. One possible option for you could be a Hasselblad 200/2000 series camera which has a focal plane shutter, and the Hasselblad shift adapter. The downside of the hassy shift adapter is it also serves as a 1.4x teleconverter with the concordant loss of light. And it would be a rather rare accessory to boot.

    Look into an RB Graflex. They made them in 2x3 size. But still no movements. Although- since you home-brew lenses, hacking an RB Graflex front standard would not be that big a deal for you, so you could find one that's cosmetically rough but functional and give it front tilts and swings.

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