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Members: 75,779   Posts: 1,671,176   Online: 821

Petzval Lens Enthusiasts

  1. Stephanie Brim
    After testing it a bit, I actually think that this 125mm lens I have qualifies. See picture.

    I'd like to get something shorter, though, in the avenue of 100mm or so. I have the 105 I stole from a folder, but that one definitely doesn't count.
  2. Barry S
    Barry S
    Stephanie--if it's a process lens, it's not a Petzval. Petzvals are curved field lenses--the exact opposite of what you want for process work. A 5" Petzval lens is just about perfect for 4x5. With a 4" lens, it's likely you'll get a circular image on the film--at least anywhere near infinity. A process lens is going to have a greater coverage, so I wouldn't assume you need to go with a shorter focal length if you don't see what you want.
  3. Stephanie Brim
    Stephanie Brim
    Okay. I know it isn't a Petzval now, but I'm still stumped as to what it is. At least I know what it ISN'T. It's quite nice, though, as far as old lenses go.

    I suppose it's back to the search, then.

    I'm actually wanting the circular image, somwhat anyway. At least cutting off of corners.
  4. Andrew Moxom
    Andrew Moxom
    Steph, perhaps it could be a rapid rectilinear lens?
  5. Stephanie Brim
    Stephanie Brim
    Could be. I think I'll just go with the fact that I like it and quit looking for answers as to who made it or what type it actually is. I'll probably go nuts trying to figure it out otherwise.

    I'm going to be on the lookout for a lens, reasonably cheap, after Christmas, in the 100-125mm (4-5") range. It's for a specific project that I'm thinking of doing. It doesn't need to be a Petzval, but it would kind of help the project if it had that look. If anyone turns up anything in the next few weeks and it isn't something that you want, drop me a PM to let me know about it.
  6. ishutteratthethought
    i know that people have had issues with the improper assembly of these petzvals so i got to thinking about this Darlot that i bought. the guy i bought it from thought it was for a ship & told me the rear lens had two lenses that were divided by a ring. the only way he would have known this is that he would have had to take it apart. i needed to clean it anyway so i took the rear elements apart and it appears that this cat that i bought it from had it assembled backwards and then some. i cleaned....didnít break it...and re-assembled it per the petzval spec on this page.http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...%3Den%26sa%3DN
    now as i look through the lens it is considerably more clear in the center. there is still focus fall off due to the petzval design however the center is a little more sharp....in fact a lot more sharp in the center.
    i will run some film tests to see where i am at.
  7. ishutteratthethought
    Hey Folks,
    Well the lens adjustments appear to have worked. The center of the test image on the lower right is much more defined.
    I went out to shoot the petzval but still need to get an ND filter and maybe slower film. i found that when i quick fire the packard shutter I have too much vibration causing blur. Exposure was there but blur was created by the quick snap. I found that opening the shutter and exposing for a second or two eliminated that issue. I will be looking at the Cokin system which I believe Andrew uses.
  8. Colin Corneau
    Colin Corneau
    Do most of the people here use their lenses for wet plate work, or regular B&W film (or a combo of both)?

    I've been looking at the collodion work posted and the itch just won't go away. However, living in an igloo like I do, I'm not sure how to get started on learning this process.
  9. gandolfi
    Colin: Regular.
    I live in Denmark, Europe, and here we have a VERY strickt control on who is allowed to but raw chemicals....

    Just to get Potassium Dichromate, I needed a police permit...

    Wet Plate is (along with carbon printing) on the very top of techniques I would LOVE to do...

    But I fear the regulations will restrict me....

    (Maybe one could seek photographic asylum in the States?)
  10. Colin Corneau
    Colin Corneau
    A photographic refugee, seeking asylum on artistic grounds. I like that concept!
  11. Barry S
    Barry S
    For now I'm shooting film, but will start wet plate in early 2009. I know a lot of wet platers are 100%, but at this point I don't see giving up film. There's a good amount of information out on the web for starting on collodion, but I still think it's necessary to take a workshop or get some personal instruction. The Silver Sunbeam is one good online reference book.

  12. gandolfi
    yes - as long as one knows what that strange mesurements means....

    grains - fluid ounzes - fahrenheit - "spec. grav., 1.843 .." and so on...

  13. Barry S
    Barry S
    Steve-- That's a great point about checking to make sure your petzval is assembled correctly. I bought a Darlot and was disappointed to find a single rear element and what I thought was only a cemented doublet up front. It took some very wild and swirly images, so i just figured it was another design. One day I removed the rear element and found a retaining ring and a spacer ring so I thought--ok, somebody broke one of the elements. A few days after that I was just falling asleep when a thought to check the front group struck me. I got up, unscrewed the front group and discovered that the missing rear element was sandwiched next to the cemented doublet! I reassembled the lens correctly and it got a lot sharper and some of the wildness went away. I may yet reassemble it incorrectly again because I liked the effect.

    One thing to keep in mind is that the air spaced group can be reversed depending on the design. Some lens makers even produced Petzvals with both variations. Dallmeyer introduced the reversed group with the negative flint glass element behind the positive crown glass element. I've also noticed in some projection lenses that the air-spaced group is placed in front. So there are some variations within the Petzval family.
  14. ishutteratthethought
    Barry, Thanks for the info, i am glad to see that i am not the only one who loses sleep thinking about this stuff. My wife says I am obsessed and I say....so be it.
    Do you know of any sites that specifically talk about the different variations of the petzval assembly and the results from those variations? I am sure that the fellow APUG members have more knowledge than most and I am not sure how much more I need, i think just getting out to shoot more would be best.
  15. Barry S
    Barry S
    I probably shouldn't assume that everyone knows this link, but it's excellent.

  16. Andrew Moxom
    Andrew Moxom
    I concur with what Barry says. The petzval area of this site gives really good insight into the history of these wonderful lenses, and also a really clear diagram on how the lens elements are supposed to be oriented.
  17. Barry S
    Barry S
    I uploaded four images from my ongoing Memory Series. Since my main computer is on the fritz, scanning has been a little slow. The project is going well and I'm planning to have a show in late spring.

  18. Andrew Moxom
    Andrew Moxom
    Somebody should take a look at this!!! http://cgi.ebay.ca/SALESMAN-SAMPLE-M...1%7C240%3A1318
  19. Andrew Moxom
    Andrew Moxom
  20. Barry S
    Barry S
    That box looks fun, although a few of those lenses may be missing the rear elements--it's hard to tell. Looks like it would cover a wide range of focal lengths. Naturally, no flanges--*sigh*. I like that Dubroni--looks like a nice Petzval with waterhouse stop and it's a 9x12 lens, so it'll cover 4x5--probably with a bit of swirl.
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