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  1. #1

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    8X10 pinhole build -

    I'm in the planning stages of an 8X10 pinhole build. I've found most of the links on other threads on pinhole calculators, the one with the 4X5 dimensions (which I've scaled up to 8X10) etc.

    I will be utilizing paper negatives in this camera

    My biggest question - what is the best way to hold the film/paper at the back of the camera. I guess the most ideal would be an 8X10 film holder. I don't own one, so unless anyone can point me in the direction of one for ~$20-30, I'll need another alternative.

    If anyone else has dimensions for their 8X10 build, I'd love to see them. I think I have it figured out, but seeing other designs never hurt. Also, anything you learned while building. No need for us all to repeat the same mistakes!

    For the actual pinhole, I've heard the thinner the material the better? I have access to tons of scrap lithographic printing plates. I'd have to measure the thickness to be sure. Offhand, I'd say about the thickness of a regular business card.

  2. #2
    jbridges's Avatar
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    You might be deadest on creating your pinhole 100%DIY but I bought laser drilled pinholes from pinholeresources.com and am very impressed. The kit came with about 10 of various sizes with a sheet for recommended focal lengths and times. I make my own crude pinhole cameras too and found outsourcing this step easier. Plus they do a better job then I could ever do.
    I think someone else could help you better on attaching the film holder. My cameras are simple copy paper boxes and I attach my paper with a little bit of gaffers tape. Crude but it works.
    Good luck!

  3. #3

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    Thanks, I'll check out that site. I'm not opposed to buying pre made pinholes. That would take the guesswork out of having to drill my own and figure out exactly how big it is.

    edit: I tried going to pinholeresources.com, but it doesn't bring up a site. Cold you put in a direct link?

  4. #4
    TheToadMen's Avatar
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    The site is temporarily down. Eric posted the following on Flick on March, 6th 2013:

    "The Pinhole Resource website has been down since mid-Febuary because our server abruptly quit. We are trying to get it back up. Call us at 575.536.9942 to order pinhole products or for information.
    Nancy Spencer
    Eric Renner
    www..pinholeresource.com
    "

    I'm not sure, but their email could be: pinhole@gilanet.com
    "Have fun and catch that light beam!"
    Bert from Holland
    my blog: http://thetoadmen.blogspot.nl
    my Linkedin pinhole group: http://tinyurl.com/pinholegroup


    * "So much time and so little to do. Wait a minute. Strike that. Reverse it. Thank you." (the original Willy Wonka: Gene Wilder, 1971)
    * My favorite cameras: Hasselblad SWC, Leica SL, Leica M7, Russian FKD 18x24, Bronica SQ-B and RF645, Rolleiflex T2, Nikon F4s, Agfa Clack and my pinhole cameras

  5. #5
    Joe VanCleave's Avatar
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    I made an 8x10 box camera from black foamcore board and black gaffer's tape, with a base of plywood for stability and to keep the center of gravity low to minimize wind-induced vibration atop a tripod.

    I made a storage slot behind the film plane, about 2" deep, with a movable partition that divides the storage space into two parts, one for exposed and one for unexposed paper.

    For attaching the paper to the film plane, I used several pieces of double-sided tape. Provided it's not too sticky, it will detach from the back of RC paper fine. If not, you can use loops of painter's masking tape.

    The camera is changed out/loaded using a changing bag.

    I also build a 5x7 version with similar design, except I cut down 8x10 paper into 5x8 pieces and use the extra 1/2" on either side to hold the paper in place using thin sheet magnets, which are connected via a gaffers tape hinge from the sides, with a sheet of galvanized steel painted black behind the paper at either side, for the magnets to attach to. This system has proven very elegant in operation and easy to reload in the field.

    One thing I've found handy for these kinds of one-shot cameras in the field is a small 3-legged camping stool to sit on while using one's lap to hold the changing bag and camera during the reloading procedure; this is especially handy in situations where there's nothing convenient to sit on.

    ~Joe

  6. #6
    DWThomas's Avatar
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    Well, I've been wrestling with the idea of doing an 8x10. I was going to hold off a year, but a week or two back, the devil made me buy two 8x10 film holders off ePrey. My easy way out would be to upscale the 4x5 I built two years ago but I am considering some "enhanced" designs.

    Among my thoughts, a two-part body, at least the larger part with sloped sides, such that the design and focal length could be altered without a complete rebuild. The heavy rubber bands on pegs seemed adequate to hold a 4x5 holder, but I'm leaning toward a sort of lid assembly and catch for 8x10. The previous box was mostly made from scraps found around the workshop, but with the larger pieces required at 8x10 I may have to actually buy some stuff.

    I've tried to organize my thoughts with some drawings in TurboCAD, but I know so little about it and use it so infrequently that I spend more time wrestling with the tools than designing!

    My target would be WPPD the last Sunday in April, so I suppose one of these days the contemplation phase needs to transition to construction. Of course I do have three pinhole alternatives to fall back on.

  7. #7
    ronlamarsh's Avatar
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    another source for quality pinholes is lenox laser
    No escaping it!
    I must step on fallen leaves
    to take this path

  8. #8

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    Good suggestion on the plywood bottom!

  9. #9
    DWThomas's Avatar
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    I was pretty pleased with the home brew pinhole I did for my last 4x5 effort. I used dimple-and-wet-sand with 1 mil brass shim stock, chemically blackened for use. Given that 8x10 would want a larger hole, I would think it would be easier to get good results than with making little tiny ones.

  10. #10
    NedL's Avatar
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    I recently built a prototype 5x7 camera out of double weight black matt board based on Joe's design above. I've used it enough now to learn what I like and what I don't. The storage compartment is handier than it might sound until you've tried it... the alternative is juggling envelopes of exposed and unexposed paper inside your changing bag. It's a great idea and makes it easier to change paper without fingerprints or scratches.

    I too have often wished I had something to sit on... the portable stool is a great idea. A couple of times I've found myself lingering in areas where there was a bench, just because it provided a place to sit and change paper.

    Mine has two minor differences:

    1) The paper is held in place by a mat window that is attached on 3 sides. To load the camera, I slide an unexposed sheet in from the top. This is easy to do in the changing bag and makes a nice 1/8" white border ( black when contact printed. ). I worried that sliding the paper in could scratch the emulsion, but that does not seem to be a problem, at least not that I've noticed yet.

    2) My wooden base is not actually attached to the camera. The camera sits on top of it on the tripod and is held in place by a couple of big rubber bands. That way the same piece of wood with a t-nut can be used for several different cameras.

    I'm contemplating an 8x10 wooden version too. ( But for WPPD my eye is on a popcorn container that will hold a sheet of 11x14... we'll see! )

    Have Fun!

    Ned

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