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CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 04:21
I am saving up for a Chamonix, and am considering also getting a really cheap 4x5 studio camera, like perhaps a Cambo or something. It looks like it might be possible to get one for perhaps 100 Euro, with a little patience and luck. Any recommendations as to which models are cheap but good, like perhaps an SC or SC2? Do they take Technika lens plates (my only 4x5 lens has a Technika plate, as will the Chamonix)?

Thanks in advance for any help.

Paul Ewins
23-Jan-2010, 04:43
Cambos (and the Calumet versions) have their own lensboard which is quite a bit bigger than a Technika board. The only converter boards I have seen have been fairly expensive, but it may be possible to build your own. The older square rail versions are cheaper than the more precise dovetail rail types but both use the same boards and accessories. One advantage of the square rail versions is that the 5x7 and 8x10 upgrades are relatively common and cheap. If you want extra boards or other bits and pieces KEH is usually cheaper than eBay for individual pieces.

CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 05:00
Thanks for the tips.

Hmm, I wouldn't want to swap boards all the time, so I suppose a converter board would be the way to go. I will look for one at a reasonable price. Do you have any links handy? I don't find any at Keh or B&H.

ki6mf
23-Jan-2010, 05:13
In the USA SK Grimes in Rhode Island makes a Cambo adapter board that allows for use of a Technika board. Cost was $125. This company us used by many US large format photographer for services and the also machine parts for photographers. Calumat in the USA also had a Cambo adapter board as they were closing them out for about $125 I think this price is not good anymore and you may want to check their website. I have seen rail style view cameras for $150 at KEH.com. These may be Graflex view cameras however if light tight will work as well as any other camera.

David McNiven
23-Jan-2010, 05:17
Hi, Sinar stuff is usually cheaper than Cambo and easier to find.
I have a Cambo Master (massive, geared movements, does everything) but don't use it that much.
Picked up a Sinar Wolf/A1/Alpine for 50 without bellows - no gears, a bit crude, but very portable for backpacking. Similar to the F but a different rail to other Sinars. I like it.
The F series often go for cheap these days.

eddie
23-Jan-2010, 05:34
4x5 monorails are very cheap...like less than $100 in the USA. not sure what is offered in europe.

just put the monorail money in the jar for the chamonix. the chamonix will serve you better. the faster you save the sooner you will get the chamonix.

CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 05:45
Hmm, I'll keep my eyes open for Sinar too, but Sinars appear to have a different lens board too, so am I not just swapping one problem for another identical one?

CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 05:49
Eddie, I wouldn't mind having both. The Chamonix will come when I get my stock plan money in mid-to-late February, so I don't really need to save in that sense, just wait.

It would be nice to have a studio 4x5 as well with more complete movements, but this is a much lower priority than the field camera, which I will use to continue a long-term project I am working on, hence the search for a lower price. The instant gratification is also at work on the studio camera :)

Do any similarly good and affordable 4x5 studio cameras with full movement exist (in Europe...) which take the Technika lens boards natively?

IanG
23-Jan-2010, 06:04
The Cambo Cadet's are very cheap in Europe I paid 100 (under 120 Euros) for mine.

Lens boards are easy to make and I think it would be extremely easy to make your own adaptor board to take a Technika board, it's what I intend to do when I'm back in the UK later this year. The Cadet is my main 5x4 in the UK as I try not to fly with a camera because of weight restrictions.

Ian

Dvenosa
23-Jan-2010, 06:10
You can get a press camera for about $79 in bgn condition at keh.

Frank_E
23-Jan-2010, 06:16
I purchased one of these Linhof to Cambo adaptor boards

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Linhof-To-Cambo-Adapter-Board_W0QQitemZ230425236880QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_DefaultDomain_0?hash=item35a66a1590#ht_500wt_1182

they are made out of wood
the quality is so so, you do need to touch up with a file to get it to fit properly
but it works

the price is right....!
there were no other bidders, so I only paid $20
he lists them often

my experience with the vendor was ok
but others on this forum have had complaints

CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 06:52
Daniel, thanks for the heads up, but I am looking for a camera which wouldn't become redundant once I get my Chamonix, and hence full movements.

Searching for Cambo in the camera part of eBay, I come up with just a couple of cameras. Are there any good shops around with good deals?

CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 07:04
Frank, thanks for that tip. The board looks pretty rough, but then the price is right, and I am not looking for perfection. If I find a nice Cambo for a good price, I will likely get one of these.

How is Toronto these days? Here in Berlin where I have lived the last few years it is currently -14 and about 80% humidity. Yuck.

al olson
23-Jan-2010, 08:16
You might consider a Linhof Color model. It is a rail camera with many parts interchangeable with the Technika IV. You can snap in the viewing hood from a Technika or use the Linhof Reflex Viewer. Your Linhof board mounted lens would work in this camera.

I have a Color model that I that I use for indoors. It is light enough to carry into the field for short walks, but it does not collapse to a convenient shape.

This is an example of a clean looking camera that recently sold on ebay:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Linhof-4x5-Kardon-Color-Camera-with-Extension-Rail_W0QQitemZ350302694173QQcmdZViewItemQQptZFilm_Cameras?hash=item518faaeb1d

CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 08:36
The Color looks like a nice camera, but I don't see any for less than several hundred, except one in the States. It weighs 25lb. so I would probably pay an absolute mint on shipping. I will keep it in mind, in case one pops up, thanks.

Oren Grad
23-Jan-2010, 08:58
Searching for Cambo in the camera part of eBay, I come up with just a couple of cameras.

Carsten, if you search US eBay keep in mind that lots of Cambo gear was sold here under the Calumet brand.

Oren Grad
23-Jan-2010, 09:01
Hmm, I'll keep my eyes open for Sinar too, but Sinars appear to have a different lens board too, so am I not just swapping one problem for another identical one?

Sort of. Sinar / Technika adapters are more common here than Cambo / Technika adapters. More important, if there's any chance you'll want to move to a larger format at some point, many of the larger field cameras take Sinar boards but none takes Cambo boards.

David McNiven
23-Jan-2010, 09:05
Whichever monorail camera you decide to buy an adapter is easy to make for a Technika board because the board is so small (96x99 for the 45, 74x81 for the 23)

Sinar boards are 140 square, Cambo are (mostly) 162 square, so no difficulty modifying them to carry a smaller board. The other way round it's not so easy.

From previous experience I know that I could adapt a board inside 3 hours and that it would be far better than that eBay jobbie.

Ask your friends and you will likely find one of them knows someone near you who can do the same.

Richard Raymond
23-Jan-2010, 09:20
Carston,
You should be able to get a Cambo SC (N or NX are the same cameras) for between 75 and 130 Euros if you have a little patience. For studio work make sure that you watch for one with the rotating back. It is easy to make shorter or longer rails by using common square aluminum stock. Easy enough to take out and shoot architecture if you decide to roam outside the studio.
Ric

CarstenW
23-Jan-2010, 11:11
Thanks all for the tips, lots to mull over. I will see if I can find a Sinar in the same price range, but otherwise it will be a Cambo (or Calumet, good point).

Frank_E
23-Jan-2010, 18:01
Frank, thanks for that tip. The board looks pretty rough, but then the price is right, and I am not looking for perfection. If I find a nice Cambo for a good price, I will likely get one of these.

How is Toronto these days? Here in Berlin where I have lived the last few years it is currently -14 and about 80% humidity. Yuck.

Carsten I am also relatively new to LF photography. My main 4x5 for landscape etc. is an older Nagaoka. some refer to it as the poor mans Tachihara. It takes Linhof boards. I was lucky in getting a Cambo SC on Ebay located here in Toronto for only $100 Cdn (and no shipping charges because I could pick it up). I purchased it because I thought it would be more convenient for still life shots and experimenting with old lenses (I did get a Petzval, yet untested).

This has been a mild winter here in Toronto with comparatively little snow but we have had our share of cold days. Today was only zero degrees. I have an affinity for your current country of residence (are you German?). Have never been in Berlin but would love to visit. I was born and spent my first few years in Braunsweig the home of Voigtlander.

Frank Petronio
23-Jan-2010, 21:30
What is so magical about a Chamonix? Why not get a decent monorail and if you hate it, you can always sell it to break even and apply the cash towards that mystic wooden box. You can treat the monorail as a savings account since you can usually sell it for what you paid for it, provided you shop carefully in the first place.

And you may find the professional monorail so much faster, simpler, and more versatile to use that you might forget why you wanted a hobby camera made out of toothpick wood and paperclips ;-)

CarstenW
24-Jan-2010, 01:26
Hmm, now there are two Franks :)

Frank P., I am not too concerned about recovering my investment, I will be keeping this for a long time. I used to use a Crown Graphic but let my cousin have it. Now I want to get back into it, a little deeper this time.

I want to continue a project with 4x5 which I started with a Contax 645 and the 35/3.5 and 120/4 Makro lenses, so I will be picking up a field camera (must be compact and light, and have a bit of movement) and 90 and 210 lenses. I have the 210 already (Schneider 210mm f/5.6 APO-Symmar) and will order the camera sometime in February. I have not yet seen a monorail which could pack down compact enough to fit in a Tenba Messenger Bag...

Frank E., I am Canadian :) I have lived in Berlin the last 8 years; great city. Due to the east-west split and the way Berlin grew together from 62 small towns (IIRC) it is very decentralized, and I don't get the creeping feeling of claustrophobia here which sets in after 2-3 years of living in Toronto. The weather is milder than T.O. all year round, with wonderful sunny summers with life happening on the sidewalk and in cafes. Berliners are very relaxed and friendly, and Berlin is not too expensive compared to most European cities.