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Thread: Thinking banquet aloud

  1. #1

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    Thinking banquet aloud

    Greetings to all you DIY folks

    I would like to share with you my recent idea and ask you kindly for your thoughts / advice...

    I am very much intrigued with the panoramic format lately and have desire to shoot 7x17 format. However, I cannot afford buying a new camera, and even the old Korona or Folmer Schwing cameras are in the end too pricey for my pocket - especcially when I count in the freight, customs, taxes and all the fees. I think that getting a pair of holders would be difficult enough.

    I can buy 7x17 xray for less than a dollar per sheet and therefore I am trying to come up with a cheap solution for a camera. However, my DIY skills are not that advanced that I would feel confident of building a complete camera myself.

    Now, i was looking at the old banquet cameras and an idea occur to me, that maybe I could get a Korona or a similar camera in 8x10 format and make a wider "banquet" rear bed and build a 7x17 rear frame to fit the holders. And I would see whether I will tackle bellows-making myself or just have them made.

    My questions therefore are - has anyone else done something like that? Is it possible? What are the obstacles that I cannot see?
    Is any of the old cameras - Koronas, Kodak 2Ds, Burke&Jamses,... better to adapt in this way than the others?

    Thank you in advance for your insights.

    Andrej
    Website of sorts, as well as ipernity thing.

  2. #2
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    With humble woodworking skills and minimal budget, don't forget pinhole.

  3. #3

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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    Thanks, I am not forgetting it - I already have my drawings ready for a "one shot" pinhole gig (not having any holders yet).
    Website of sorts, as well as ipernity thing.

  4. #4
    Lachlan 717
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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    Perhaps get in touch with another camera builder in Czech Republic, Filip Habart. He's building LF and ULF components. PM me if you'd like his email address.
    Lachlan.

    You miss 100% of the shots you never take. -- Wayne Gretzky

  5. #5
    Guilherme Maranhão coisasdavida's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    I guess I just went through the same questioning.
    It started with a 50 sheet box of 8x20" film that I got a while ago.
    If I ever decided this is the thing, maybe I'll get a proper equipment then.
    Right now I figured three holders would do, since I had 50 sheets, each face would get an average of 8 loading and unloading operations.
    Black gatorfoam and black crescent board seem OK for such a task and longevity. So I made my first holder last week as a proof of concept. Many things went wrong but I have the most important for now, the T distance.
    I made some pics and as soon as I can I'll post them.

  6. #6

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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    Quote Originally Posted by Lachlan 717 View Post
    Perhaps get in touch with another camera builder in Czech Republic, Filip Habart. He's building LF and ULF components. PM me if you'd like his email address.
    Thanks, I am already in touch with him, although he's not what I would call cheap.. But he does some fantastic work so I do understand his prices.
    Website of sorts, as well as ipernity thing.

  7. #7

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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    Quote Originally Posted by coisasdavida View Post
    I guess I just went through the same questioning.
    It started with a 50 sheet box of 8x20" film that I got a while ago.
    If I ever decided this is the thing, maybe I'll get a proper equipment then.
    Right now I figured three holders would do, since I had 50 sheets, each face would get an average of 8 loading and unloading operations.
    Black gatorfoam and black crescent board seem OK for such a task and longevity. So I made my first holder last week as a proof of concept. Many things went wrong but I have the most important for now, the T distance.
    I made some pics and as soon as I can I'll post them.
    I'll be interested in that!
    Website of sorts, as well as ipernity thing.

  8. #8

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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    Quote Originally Posted by andreios View Post
    Now, i was looking at the old banquet cameras and an idea occur to me, that maybe I could get a Korona or a similar camera in 8x10 format and make a wider "banquet" rear bed and build a 7x17 rear frame to fit the holders. And I would see whether I will tackle bellows-making myself or just have them made.
    Once you build the rear frame and the bellows, there isn't much left to build other than the front standard At least nothing that would require a lot more DIY skills.

  9. #9

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    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    Quote Originally Posted by el french View Post
    Once you build the rear frame and the bellows, there isn't much left to build other than the front standard At least nothing that would require a lot more DIY skills.
    Well, there is the focusing rack, front movements... Quite a lot in my eyes..
    Website of sorts, as well as ipernity thing.

  10. #10

    Re: Thinking banquet aloud

    Finding a wooden field camera with a poor condition bellows and making a new rear frame and bellows certainly seems worth trying. An 8X10 with a bad bellows should be fairly inexpensive since most people don't want to spend what a new bellows will cost. Occasionally on eBay you see 8X10 cameras which are missing the 8X10 back and that should reduce the price greatly.

    Part of what you need to think about in designing your 7X17 is what lens or lenses you want to use. Here is a post with lens information http://www.largeformatphotography.in...30-7x17-lenses
    If you can get along with a 300mm or 360mm lens the length of the bed and bellows can be much shorter than if you also want to be able to use a 600mm lens. If you use a shorter focal length lens, it seems to me you may be able to make a "bag" bellows rather than the traditional folded bellows. A bag bellows looks like it would be much easier to make.

    When looking for a wooden camera to start your project, if you can find an Ansco, some of them have a front tilt of the lens board built in. An Eastman or other camera without front tilt can be modified to have this movement or a front tilt lens board can be made. Try to find a camera with as large a lens board as possible in case you want to use some large diameter process lens.

    You might try to locate a serious amateur woodworker to help with this project. Paying someone with the right tools and gluing clamps could save you hours and hours of time.

    One of my long-term future projects is to build a back to use some 8X20 film holders I have. But I want to base this on my Sinar Norma monorail camera so I have move movements than most of the older field cameras and the Sinar allows unlimited extension with easily available add-on rails. GlennView (http://www.glennview.com/sinar.htm) has conversions for Sinars in various large formats, but I'm too cheap to do anything but try to build my own.

    Len

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