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  1. #1
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    Completed My 110b 4x5 Rangefinder Project!

    Hi all. I just finished my Polaroid 110b Pathfinder 4x5 conversion project and thought that some of you would like to see it. It was inspired by the various conversions that have been around for quite a while now. I couldn't afford to pay someone $600 on the low side all the way up to several thousand on the high side to make one of these for me so I ventured to make one for myself. In reality it costs little more then the cost of the camera, the back, and a trip or two to the hardware store. The first attempt was with an 800 Land Camera which took several days to complete and resulted in a rather rough camera and only partially a success as far as what I wanted. The second attempt was completed pretty much over the course of one day and resulted in a very fine camera that I'll be proud and excited to use. Anyway, here is a link to the post on my website
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com

  2. #2
    baachitraka's Avatar
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    I am basically 35mm shooter with SLR and curious about the focusing with your camera mod.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fragomeni View Post
    Hi all. I just finished my Polaroid 110b Pathfinder 4x5 conversion project and thought that some of you would like to see it. It was inspired by the various conversions that have been around for quite a while now. I couldn't afford to pay someone $600 on the low side all the way up to several thousand on the high side to make one of these for me so I ventured to make one for myself. In reality it costs little more then the cost of the camera, the back, and a trip or two to the hardware store. The first attempt was with an 800 Land Camera which took several days to complete and resulted in a rather rough camera and only partially a success as far as what I wanted. The second attempt was completed pretty much over the course of one day and resulted in a very fine camera that I'll be proud and excited to use. Anyway, here is a link to the post on my website
    OM-1n: Do I need to own a Leica?
    Rolleicord Va: Humble.
    Holga 120GFN: Amazingly simple yet it produces outstanding negatives to print.

  3. #3
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    Baachitraka, the camera is a rangefinder. Under the top place is a rangefinder focusing mechanism with a cam calibrated for a 127mm lens. While looking through the integrated viewfinder/rangefinder window the knob on the outside of the door is turned which moves the lens forward and back to focus which corresponds to the coincident rangefinder images. It works like any other rangefinder camera, its just bigger.
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com

  4. #4
    baachitraka's Avatar
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    I am also thinking that it may be possible to focus on ground-glass like in LF. Yeah, covering with a black cloth is not always comfortable...

    Nevertheless, it is very good mod indeed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fragomeni View Post
    Baachitraka, the camera is a rangefinder. Under the top place is a rangefinder focusing mechanism with a cam calibrated for a 127mm lens. While looking through the integrated viewfinder/rangefinder window the knob on the outside of the door is turned which moves the lens forward and back to focus which corresponds to the coincident rangefinder images. It works like any other rangefinder camera, its just bigger.
    OM-1n: Do I need to own a Leica?
    Rolleicord Va: Humble.
    Holga 120GFN: Amazingly simple yet it produces outstanding negatives to print.

  5. #5
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    Yes, you can focus on the ground glass as well. One of the pictures shows the back with the ground glass attached. It could be used like a view camera (without movements) if set up on a tripod. Although it can be focused on the ground glass my intentions are to use it hand held and focus via the rangefinder.
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com

  6. #6
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    Well done. This would a great topic for a new APUG article with a couple of pictures.
    Thank you.
    CWalrath
    APUG BLIND PRINT EXCHANGE
    DE Darkroom

    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  7. #7
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    Well done. This would a great topic for a new APUG article with a couple of pictures.
    Thank you.
    CWalrath
    APUG BLIND PRINT EXCHANGE
    DE Darkroom

    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  8. #8

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    Wow! It looks professionally made, and as I'm going through the pictures it looks really good. Pretty inspirational, now to look for funds...

  9. #9

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    So when will these be avaiable to the public and the price? I wonder if the same could be done on one of the pack cameras such as the 180 or 195.

  10. #10
    Fragomeni's Avatar
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    Well done. This would a great topic for a new APUG article with a couple of pictures.
    I agree. There is information available online but none is very centralized. Figuring out what to do and how to do it was the most complicated part. There are a number of people out there who have been making these commercially for years now i.e. Dean Jones and his Razzle, Steven Icanberry and his Alpenhause Kamera Werke conversion, the Byron camera, and of course David Littman's Littman 45 Single. I would be no where near as qualified to write a tutorial as them and many others would be but then again they do this commercially. If no one else would be willing to write a tutorial I suppose I could do it but then it would be tailored to the homebrew camera maker and not at all intended to be instruction for making a resalable commercially finished product.

    Wow! It looks professionally made, and as I'm going through the pictures it looks really good. Pretty inspirational, now to look for funds...
    Haha, thank you very much! I was quite surprised how well it turned out. I didn't bother to very finely finish it so if you look closely you can see some rough edges and a bit of unpainted epoxy but after all my intention wasn't to make a commercial product, it was a homebrew project!

    So when will these be avaiable to the public and the price? I wonder if the same could be done on one of the pack cameras such as the 180 or 195.
    Haha, I don't think so. There are already too many people out there who are better at it then I am. If I could find a way to do it for an affordable price I would but the man hours that goes into it is what makes it uneconomical to sell for less then at least $500 or $600 which it out of range for a lot of people (including myself!). As to doing it with the other models of Polaroid cameras, I'm sure it is possible with many of them but the question would be why would you want to I suppose. It would all come down to purpose. The reason the 110b is so commonly used is because of its very accurate rangefinder and the very sharp Rodenstock Ysarex lens which came stock on it and which is far superior to any other lens that Polaroid put on their other models. The camera is just perfect for this type of conversion and it really produces phenomenal results on 4x5 film. I suppose if you were looking for a camera which would produce lo-fi or almost Lomo results on 4x5 then some of the other cheaper plasticky models might work very well but then you'd have issues because many of those require power to operate which was often supplied in the original film cartridges which you of course wouldn't be using if the camera was converted (besides that the cartridges aren't available any more obviously.
    Francesco Fragomeni
    www.FrancescoFragomeni.com



 

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