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Thread: One of many zany projects. #1

  1. #1
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    One of many zany projects. #1

    I have been interested in military aerial wide-angle lenses since the Sixties when I worked on an RAF recon base, and managed to get several lenses. In my early years I began with this DIY strictly as a prototype to test a three-inch WA to see how well it performed. Made from plywood. Focus is done by sliding the lens in a track on the right side - very little movement is required. At this moment I am not sure where it is - so many trials go to storage.'

    The shutter is an electrically controlled guillotine that I fudged by inserting a common cable release into the works.

    It performed beyond expectation.

    It is LF! 5x5"

    I have more unconventional w/a LF I made should anyone wish to see them.
    .
    Last edited by Jac@stafford.net; 28-Mar-2018 at 16:31.

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    Re: One of many zany projects. #1

    Kool!!!

    You can send Marvin the Martian packing if you shoot him... ;-)

    Great you were able to rig a test bed for that beast (and shoot it)...

    Just the weight of some of these aerial lenses make my shoulder hurt just looking at them!!! But you seems to have tamed it into submission...

    My fantasy is the have the entire rig with B-25 camera plane to do the heavy lifting...

    I thought the air corps would spec everything on an aircraft to be as light as possible, but these camera systems!?!!!

    Keep 'em flying!!!!

    Steve K

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    Re: One of many zany projects. #1

    I'd certainly like to see more similar cameras, very interesting.

    I made an 8x10 fixed focus wide angle so ugly that my wife walked away from the scene in shame the one time I used it when she was there my camera is based on a couple of very cheap plywood garden trays stuck together, Jac's cameras are much easier on the eye.
    Peter

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    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: One of many zany projects. #1

    Quote Originally Posted by pjd View Post
    I'd certainly like to see more similar cameras, very interesting.
    [...]
    I made an 8x10 fixed focus wide angle so ugly that my wife walked away from the scene in shame
    Good! I would still like to see it. Sometimes elegance is ugly!

    Sure. I have a few. Here is another one. 47mm Biogon over 4x5. Viewfinder from one of our generous members here, now being adapted for parallax.

    I should mention that I use universal 4x5 backs on most of my builds so they can use roll-film backs up to 6x12cm.
    Last edited by Jac@stafford.net; 29-Mar-2018 at 15:36.

  5. #5
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: One of many zany projects. #1

    Oh, and an ugly, but perfectly functional one.
    I did not invent this, instead I found a 4x5"
    back that snapped into a Brooks Veriwide
    board w/5.6 47mm. Rare. I was only lucky.

    Pic of the ugly useful camera here.

    Thank goodness that it has a focusing helix, as do most of my builds.

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    Re: One of many zany projects. #1

    Sorry guys, but I fail to see what's ugly about those cameras. I find then very functional designs a bit industrial. Good inspiration and nice work.
    Expert in non-working solutions.

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    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: One of many zany projects. #1

    Quote Originally Posted by Havoc View Post
    Sorry guys, but I fail to see what's ugly about those cameras. I find then very functional designs a bit industrial. Good inspiration and nice work.
    Thanks from all of us DIY enthusiasts for the compliment. Sometimes I remind myself that the film doesn't care what the camera looks like.
    Last edited by Jac@stafford.net; 30-Mar-2018 at 12:54.

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    Re: One of many zany projects. #1

    As promised, my camera is quite ugly I rounded off a couple of corners which necessitated a repaint which didn't go so well.

    Unfortunately the lens has a few good scratches in it, but it might be of interest to some here, it's a 127mm industrial Hypergon. One sold recently on eBay for crazy money, this wasn't it. It's a fixed aperture lens (I think f32). I noticed it in a job lot of optical stuff which was described as having been in a metal tool box with a big NASA sticker on it. That job lot also yielded a big achromat which I had put in a barrel, about 9 inch focal length and ridiculously soft wide open. I digress.

    I'd tried this lens on an 8x10 2D, it seemed a bit of a fuss to rack everything to the front of a 2D to get the rails out of shot and squeeze the bellows when I can just stick it in a box. It shares a back with the 2D - the ground glass isn't so useful at f32. A spirit level is quite handy, and as the camera is very light, it's comfortable on a small tripod (excepting in high winds, in which case forget it, it's a sail). The tripod mount is a Chinese knockoff Arca style rail bolted to the box. Packard shutter mounted inside the box right behind the rear lens cell.

    The lens is a couple of stops down in the corners with 8x10, I did some calculations a few months back which I've mislaid. Tests bore out the theory, anyway. The lens might be capable of covering larger formats (albeit with greater falloff), I didn't get around to testing that theory. 10x12 or 11x14 backs and holders are beyond my means right now, and maybe the lens isn't worth it. It did occur to me to mount a Metrogon filter from surplus shed in front of it but evidently...I didn't bother yet! I also thought of putting a handle on top, someone in my street threw out a guitar amp which I recovered for the handle - only to end up fixing the amp. Odd how these things go. I don't have a negative scanner, and didn't make any decent prints from this camera yet, I'll post back when I do.

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    Peter

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