I love large format and have been shooting it for about eight years or so now. Unfortunately, I don't find myself shooting as much with it these days, and I think part of it has to do with the bulk of the kit. I use a Linhof Kardan Bi 4x5 monorail that I love dearly. It's about the best camera I have ever used and it's wonderful, but the thing is rather large and weighs at least twelve pounds.
For a while I have been toying with the idea of trading it for a field camera. It's not that I can't carry the camera fairly comfortably - being 24 I've got youth and strength on my side. However, I would just rather travel light at this stage. I would shoot 4x5 far more often if I could just throw a field camera and a couple grafmatics in my messenger bag, put the tripod strap over the opposite shoulder and roll. I'd love to shoot 4x5 when I go out cycling, which I often do with 35mm and 645, and could do so with a more compact LF camera.
The real issue here, it seems, is finding the proper field equivalent to my monorail. I shoot entirely with a 210mm lens and likely won't vary from that any time soon, so I don't need to be able to accomodate crazy-short lenses, but could use a bit of extension for close-up work. I want precision and stability more than light weight, so no wobbly-but-superlight cameras. Movements up front are fairly critical, as I do like to mess around with the plane of focus at times. There can't be any issues with a Polaroid back, as I do like to shoot T/55. Finally, unless I can find someone who wants to do an even trade, I need to find something that will fit my budget of whatever the Kardan will fetch on the current market.
I've been thinking maybe a used Linhof Technika (IV or later) or the Horseman equivalent. I would love an Ebony, but as we all know those are crazy expensive. Any suggestions or thoughts by those who have made a similar transition?