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Thread: How to measure the register of a film back

  1. #1

    How to measure the register of a film back

    I've just bought a MPP MicroPress camera (see my Intrepid vs MPP MicroPress thread for more on that exciting story...) and I've just read that the early version didn't have the international standard back.

    Apparently the older versions had a .2 inch/ 5.08mm register, and the later versions had the international standard of 4.8mm. I'm not entirely sure how to tell if I have the early or later models, so I guess I should try and measure the register to see which one I've got.

    My question is - how do I measure the register of a large format camera's back?

    Or... how can I tell if I have the early or later version of the MicroPress?

    Any help would be much appreciated!

  2. #2

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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    Quote Originally Posted by LetterBeacon View Post
    I've just bought a MPP MicroPress camera (see my Intrepid vs MPP MicroPress thread for more on that exciting story...) and I've just read that the early version didn't have the international standard back.

    Apparently the older versions had a .2 inch/ 5.08mm register, and the later versions had the international standard of 4.8mm. I'm not entirely sure how to tell if I have the early or later models, so I guess I should try and measure the register to see which one I've got.

    My question is - how do I measure the register of a large format camera's back?

    Or... how can I tell if I have the early or later version of the MicroPress?

    Any help would be much appreciated!
    Why not just shoot a test subject and see if it is sharp?

  3. #3

    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    Thanks for your reply. It's because I don't have the means to shoot with it just yet and if it doesn't have an international back on it, I'd like to return it for a camera that does.

  4. #4

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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    I'd check with the seller or manufacturer. If the manufacturer made an International back, I would think that there is a good chance that it is interchangeable with the back you have. In the process, you should be able to determine which back you have.

  5. #5

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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    Quote Originally Posted by xkaes View Post
    I'd check with the seller or manufacturer. If the manufacturer made an International back, I would think that there is a good chance that it is interchangeable with the back you have. In the process, you should be able to determine which back you have.
    Since the manufacturer has been out of business since 1982 the OP would have a problem checking with them!

  6. #6
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    Apparently the older versions had a .2 inch/ 5.08mm register, and the later versions had the international standard of 4.8mm
    The difference by your measures is 0.01" (.28mm) That's something a paper or common steel shim could fix.
    How-to measure? I assume by register you mean film and ground glass distances.
    • remove the back if you can,
    • place a sheet of film in a holder,
    • insert film holder and remove slide,
    • place a straight edge across the removed back,
    • Measure.
    • Remove the film holder,
    • measure again.

    The accepted difference/tolerance is .007" which is also the thickness of most sheet film.

    Just read Leigh's post which reminds me that I was remiss in detailing the measuring technique. Leigh is a long time veteran machinist. I'm just a poor bloke with one good steel straight-edge and a Mitutoya SC-6C gauge. I take four measurements and average. I hope I'm okay doing that.
    Last edited by Jac@stafford.net; 20-Sep-2017 at 14:50.

  7. #7
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    Quote Originally Posted by LetterBeacon View Post
    Apparently the older versions had a .2 inch/ 5.08mm register, and the later versions had the international standard of 4.8mm.
    The 0.028mm difference = 11 thousandths of an inch (0.011 inch).

    There's considerably more slop than that in the fit and registration of the filmholder in the back of the camera.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  8. #8
    Cor's Avatar
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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    Quote Originally Posted by Leigh View Post
    The 0.028mm difference = 11 thousandths of an inch (0.011 inch).

    There's considerably more slop than that in the fit and registration of the filmholder in the back of the camera.

    - Leigh
    Well to me 5.08-4.8=0.28 mm (disregarding these silly inches..)..) of that is insignificant or not in respect to the above mentioned slop I leave to you... In the end shooting a big ruler under a slight angle, lens wide open, focus on a clear number on that ruler and carefully judge the negative ( perhaps project it with an enlarger) will tell.

    Oh and check this out, hope the link works..

    best,

    Cor

  9. #9

    Join Date
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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    There was an MPP owners club with online resources. There was talk of it closing down a year or so ago, but it may be worth checking. Perhaps they had details of serial numbers of early/late versions. Try
    mppusers.co.uk
    Alex


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

  10. #10

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    Re: How to measure the register of a film back

    I don't know if the information from this table is still available on the new club's site, but I copied this from the old site's webpage in 2009.

    Click image for larger version. 

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