Jamie & Len, thanks for the information. I'll be careful when using the #2 tripod. I could actually use my heavy duty Manfrotto tripod without the pan head, but that wouldn't look vintage! The #2 looks like it spent most of it's life in a Bob's Big Boy kitchen - it has a heavy coating of dirt & grease.

The camera shutter cloth arrived from "Aki-Asahi," and it is beautiful! The only thing is that it isn't too flexible - too flexible probably isn't a good trait in a shutter curtain. The rubber+silk may be, but since I've decided to replace the bellows - see below - it is moot.

I finally got the bellows off. As Len guessed, the bellows was folded over the front removable board that attached to the front standard, and hide glued in place. Boy, is old hide glue sticky and nasty to get off!

I bought a hand held clothing steamer at Bed, Bath & Beyond for $19 and used it to remove the felt from the board, and then the bellows. The only downside of this approach was that the steam promptly shrunk the felt. It will probably work with the 5x7 Cycle Graflex now, but not my #8. No big, since the felt can easily be replaced.

The rear stumped me for a while. It appears that the wood the bellows attaches to are narrow blocks of mahogany glued to the camera frame. They are notched so that there is a lip extending the length of each side - like an "L." The bellows liner is folded over a narrow strip of cardboard and the leather glued over that. The double strengthened bellows end was simply nailed to the frame in the notch, no glue.

You hear about the craftsmanship from those day, but whomever made the camera didn't do such a hot job. The nails look like tiny carpet tacks and weren't always nailed properly, especially in the corners - which would be the hardest place to drive a nail. The frame was split on one side, which I glued together. Some nails came out easily, others lost their heads in the process. Some were in the proper place, others were cockeyed or in the lip, not the notch proper.

The bellows are worse than I feared. The Talas Leather Condition is great. I've just started applying it. It darkens the leather, but it dries to its normal shade of red. I'll condition the entire bellows.

I sent an email off to Custom Bellows to see if Keith wants the bellows flat, or as is right off the camera. Yup, I'm going to replace the bellows with a red Hypalon bellows. There is just too much damage, although I'll make the final decision when I get the entire bellows reconditioned so I can evaluate the ends, where most of the damage is. I can probably steam open the seams, and open & flatten the bellows and get the liner off, but there are multiply long tears, and I'm not sure it can be successfully repaired to working condition, which what I want. The ends are so brittle and in shreds that repair may be impossible even with reconditioning.

The Skiver I got from Talas is much thicker that the leather in the bellows. This stuff is really very, very thin! In some places it is like old paper that is ready to crumble.

I have some 3M 3224-1 hook & loop tape on a dispenser. I got it years ago at an electronics supply. 3M calls it Electrical Tape, but it is some kind of hook & loop tape. I'm trying to find out what the current part number is. It is very thin and I'm thinking it could be cut down from its 1" width and glued to the bellows and frame, and the bellows simply stuck in place. Beats nailing if it works.

The front viewer has the new FS mirror in place and the other optics cleaned. Next up, waxing the wood and polishing the brass.

After a couple of days waiting for the Shellac, I'll buff the base with 0000 steel wool and wax it. Then I'll start cleaning the rest of the brass and putting everything back together, sans bellows.

Still waiting on the new ground glass and word on the shutter. The camera should be in working order by April, at which point I'll add a Cirkut page to my web site and put up all pictures I've taken.

Again, thanks for your help.