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Thread: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

  1. #1

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    Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    Right, I'm planning on getting a crown graphic as a walkaround, as I really don't get out as much as I would like with my Sinar Norma 5x7 (SURPRISE!).

    However, my eye is pretty busted on the right, and so I'm wondering whether the crown graphic is usable for someone with only their left eye working properly?

    Also, I am trying to veer away from radioactive lenses and the like (for reasonably solid personal reasons), so I just want to check that there are no THORIUM eye pieces at work here??? (It's hard to find out about radiation with the large format stuff).

  2. #2
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    I've always used my left eye for both top and side rangefinders on Graphics. No problem. The optics involved do not demand the sophistication that once made radioactive lenses popular.

  3. #3

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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    Okay great. Just want to be sure I am not pressing up against thorium.

    Also, that's good to know about the left eye usage - I'll will definitely look into picking one up then. Anything in particular to look out for (apart from the usual holes in bellows, etc) ?

  4. #4

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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    I'm left-eyed. I think this may be one camera that actually works better for lefties.

    Familiarise yourself with the camera, then make sure the one you buy has all the parts. On Ebay, a percentage of them are missing the backs, so watch out for that. Bellows are tough, shouldn't be a problem. Really, there's not too much to go bad on them.

  5. #5

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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    I have been a left eye focuser since my early days with a Speed Graphic in the 1930's

  6. #6

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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    Great! Lots of left eyed graflex users! I'll get my research done and then perform the jump. Looking forward to getting some city shots before I leave for more rural climes.

  7. #7
    Recovering Leica Addict seezee's Avatar
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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    I started photography on a Leica rangefinder, and I've always used my left eye for that. You almost have to, with the viewfinder being on the far left end of the camera.
    "Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and annoys the pig."

    seezee at Mercury Photo Bureau
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    seezee's day-job at Messenger Web Design

  8. #8
    thafred's Avatar
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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    Hey seezee, you got it the wrong way around with the M Vf is on the left so you can use your right eye comfortably without digging your face into the camera back

    Back to OP. Side mounted kalart rangefinders on Graflex are mounted on the right side so its more "comfortable" focusing with the left eye. Holding the Graflex in a stable position when shooting hand held is a chapter for a whole other thread thou, doesnt matter wich eye you have to use...its difficult but worthwhile imho.

    When you buy one, try to get a side mounted kalart (theres top mounted RF too but you'll need a cam for that). That you can calibrate to your favorite lenses. Also make sure you have infinity stops on the rails and that the coupling arm is present (you can see it on the left to the bellows when you look at it from the front.

    Good luck with your purchase! I love my Graflexes as much as my Leica Rangefinders, maybe even more.

  9. #9
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    Hello Milam:

    I am" blind in one eye and can't see out the other." Right eye is useless and the left one'ws best corrected vision is 20/150 to 20/200 ("Legally Blind").

    My 4x5 shooting kit is a lightweight Zone VI on a CF tripod. My best work is with table top set ups and still life compositions, but small landscapes sometimes work out for me.

    I work a bit slow. Don't use a range finder. I can see the image change from out of focus to sharper on the GG, but cannot really see it snap in. Often I will place a high contrast focusing target (a retail tag bar code ) on the subject and move it around to check how movements affect DOF. When woreking outside, it often helps me to walk around in the subject space while framing and focusing. I can use a 5x loup, but have also used a jeweler's head set magnifier.

    I have prefigured the bellows extension for my 90, 150 and 210 lenses to speed things along.

    Another adaptive strategy: I only show people the images that turn out really well!
    Drew Bedo
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  10. #10
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: Busted eye - Radiation - Graflex crown graphic rangefinder

    What about one of the Polaroid conversions that were the rage back in the 2ks?
    Drew Bedo
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

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