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Thread: Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2004
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    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    I'd appreciate any comments or thoughts on this project I'm starting. Basically it's trying to convert 35mm for 5x4" to accept panoramic format.

    I've been working on converting a roll film back holder for the international 5x4" back to fit on a Sinar F2. Shelling out a 35mm cassette chambers from an old 1950's camera, I gather I need to fix these to accept a double sprocket trail for 35mm film and add a pressure plate.

    The actual negative image would probably be of the same order as the Hasselblad XPan's dimensions and use 35mm cassettes.

    The engineer I'm using is on vacation currently. I guess I'm not sure if I've thought this through carefully. I've never found anything like a 35mm film format adaptor for 5x4" either.

    If I've overlooked any snags, please feel free to let me know.



    The engineers are currently on holiday.

  2. #2

    Join Date
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    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    There was a 35mm back for press cameras, likely made by Graflex, but I might be making that last bit up.

  3. #3

    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    Adapting a photorecord back to a 4x5 camera would be very simple. (I suspect that is what the above poster is thinking about)

    However, it is designed for 100 foot rolls of bulk film and a "half frame" image.

    There are some 35mm panoramic adapters made for medium format cameras. I think I would try to adapt one of those to a 4x5 roll film back.


    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=3352&item=3860356305&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW


    You could probably take the spools shown here and drop them into one of the 6x12 roll film adapter backs (Graflex, Linhof, Shin Ho, Horseman, etc).

    Then the only think you would have to make would be a very thin mask or rails to hold the top and bottom edge of the film down.

  4. #4

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    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    Linhof made a 35mm back for 45 cameras with an International back like Linhofs and Sinars.

  5. #5

    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=15247&item=3863712924&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

  6. #6

    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    May I ask why you are doing this? Is it to use films that aren't available in 4x5 sheets or some other reason? I considered a project like this some years back and realized that I would rather have a 4x5 neg to work with and then crop a panorama view from it when needed. I even have masks for the ground glass to view a panorama, but everything ends up on 4x5 film.

  7. #7

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    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    Those are helpful suggestions.

    The Graflex back and photorecord back aren't quite what I had in mind. It's helpful to know what's out there. The Mamiya panoramic adaptor hadn't crossed my mind - will look into it before completing this. The adapting back from the China seems like a wonderful invention too.

    "May I ask why you are doing this?"

    I've been frustrated at the pace of developing sheet film especially for smaller commercial projects which don't necessitate the quality of 4x5". Shooting APX 25 and Pan F+ in wide 35mm format is more than sufficient for my purposes for detail. I use standing development per sheet, however find that the time factor eats into other aspects of my work. I agree that a 4x5" negative offers more potential to work with. Your note on the variety of 35mm emulsions compared to sheet film offerings also rings true.

  8. #8

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    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    If time is the main reason, wouldn't it be more economical to:

    1) Have a professional lab develop your film

    2) Develop on hangers in deep tanks, perhaps 4 hangers at a time - for 16 sheets at a time

    3) Develop in a Jobo rotary processor Expert drum 3010, 10 sheets at a time

    4) Use the above drum with a fully-automated Jobo Autolab, which does everything for you.

  9. #9
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    It seems like it would still just be easier and cheaper to use a rollfilm back and shoot medium format, since 120 backs are plentiful, not too expensive, and processing is readily available and easier if you're doing it yourself.

  10. #10

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    Converting 5x4" back to accept 35mm roll film

    Buy a Horizon 202 camera on eBay for $250 instead?

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