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Thread: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

  1. #1
    alec4444's Avatar
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    Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    Very exciting! Had it delivered to work in Manhattan for fear it would be rejected at my residence (long story). Was at my desk and the mailroom delivered it like 7 minutes before I had 3 hours of meetings.... Argh!

    When at last I opened it, it struck me that it was a lot bigger and heavier than it was in the store... =)

    I bought this camera, an 11x14 Wisner Technical Field in NJ near the end of August. I went and looked at it in person once, tested it all out, then phoned in an offer a few days later. There were some problems with the front standard being kinda seized, so I had them ship it directly to Richard Ritter in VT. Best decision I have made thus far.

    Richard took the camera apart and sealed the inside of the rails, which are typically left unfinished and are subject to changes in humidity. He also discovered that the back springs wern't providing enough tension. After some waffling I agreed to have him install a "bail back" or a lever based system for opening and closing the back. This keeps the camera from shifting when inserting the filmholder, and allows a stronger spring to be added.

    The work was incredible, and his time estimate was perfect, even with the extra work. The bail back is the best thing I've seen...I'd show a photo of how easy it is but I don't want to give away trade secrets. Just get one if you don't already have it!

    A sore arm and lower back later, I had it home. I attached it to my new Ries tripod; once a ridiculously sturdy looking piece of equipment now looked somewhat spindly. I extended the bellows out to their 50" maximum and asked my wife to come in and have a look. "Oh good God!" she exclaimed, "What on earth are you going to do with THAT?!" A few minutes later, after I explained I'd likely never own a lens that big and after she had a chance to examine it closely she was just as excited as I was.

    Lenses are coming soon (360mm Symmar Convertible and a 180mm Protar V for kicks). Need a couple lens boards, a focus cloth, a garden cart (actually I found some roller bags that might work), and a filmholder and I'm on my merry way. Goal is to have a photo in hand before November 1. We'll see.

    --A

  2. #2

    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    The best advice I can give you is to get an adapter from Wisner to a tecnika board. Wisner boards are not standard size and a PITA to get. This is what I use in my 12x20 and it allows me to use the same boards for my 8x10 as well.

    Another tip, when you are attaching the camera to the tripod head, dont try and place the camera horizontally and then hunt for the hole. It is easier to tilt the tripod head vertically and then holding the camera bed on one arm place the hole on the tripod hole.

    Good luck and have fun....

    Quote Originally Posted by alec4444 View Post
    Very exciting! Had it delivered to work in Manhattan for fear it would be rejected at my residence (long story). Was at my desk and the mailroom delivered it like 7 minutes before I had 3 hours of meetings.... Argh!

    When at last I opened it, it struck me that it was a lot bigger and heavier than it was in the store... =)

    I bought this camera, an 11x14 Wisner Technical Field in NJ near the end of August. I went and looked at it in person once, tested it all out, then phoned in an offer a few days later. There were some problems with the front standard being kinda seized, so I had them ship it directly to Richard Ritter in VT. Best decision I have made thus far.

    Richard took the camera apart and sealed the inside of the rails, which are typically left unfinished and are subject to changes in humidity. He also discovered that the back springs wern't providing enough tension. After some waffling I agreed to have him install a "bail back" or a lever based system for opening and closing the back. This keeps the camera from shifting when inserting the filmholder, and allows a stronger spring to be added.

    The work was incredible, and his time estimate was perfect, even with the extra work. The bail back is the best thing I've seen...I'd show a photo of how easy it is but I don't want to give away trade secrets. Just get one if you don't already have it!

    A sore arm and lower back later, I had it home. I attached it to my new Ries tripod; once a ridiculously sturdy looking piece of equipment now looked somewhat spindly. I extended the bellows out to their 50" maximum and asked my wife to come in and have a look. "Oh good God!" she exclaimed, "What on earth are you going to do with THAT?!" A few minutes later, after I explained I'd likely never own a lens that big and after she had a chance to examine it closely she was just as excited as I was.

    Lenses are coming soon (360mm Symmar Convertible and a 180mm Protar V for kicks). Need a couple lens boards, a focus cloth, a garden cart (actually I found some roller bags that might work), and a filmholder and I'm on my merry way. Goal is to have a photo in hand before November 1. We'll see.

    --A

  3. #3

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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    Alec,

    I understand 11x14 holders are pretty hard to find and very expensive... so, fyi, there are a couple listed for sale on APUG and the bay at the moment.

    I can only wish that I had a bail back on all of my cameras... it makes loading and unloading the holders from the camera soooooo much easier!

    Have fun...

    Cheers
    Life in the fast lane!

  4. #4
    Moderator Ralph Barker's Avatar
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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    What?! No pictures of your new baby? And, what about the cigars? (candy ones would be OK)

    Seriously, congrats on the new camera and the reconditioning by Mr. Ritter.

  5. #5
    Jack Flesher's Avatar
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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    LOL! My wife said exactly the same thing to me when I brought my first 8x10 camera home -- only she never understood it and still doesn't!

    Congrats on the new addition! Post a few photos!
    Jack Flesher

    www.getdpi.com

  6. #6

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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    Adding ULF is filled with surprises, especailly the prices of ancillary items. I won a 7X17 Korona last month & also received it at work - took a quick peak, then home to comtemplate the necessary refurbishing. Among other problems, it was missing a corner bracket; & I was quoted a replacement price of $150 from a westcoast camera repair store. Decided to fabricate it myself out of sheet brass - cost a few dollars. After refurbishing, went looking for filmholders - sticker shock. Did get a couple of used ones from Sandy King at very good price. Tripod - decided to make a wooden plate & attach it to top of heavy duty surveyors tripod. Lenses - the only lens I had that would cover 7X17 is a Goerz Artar 19", but didn't have enough bellows/rail extension to be able to focus it. So back to eBay. Just received today a barrel lens from Lens2nShutter, so had to go out & buy a router in order to fabricate a lensboard. Also recived film from J&C so I'm almost ready to take some pictures. At least its not as expensive as that Seitz 6X17 digital panoramic camera.
    Forgot to mention a couple other items: The darkcloth my wife had made for my 8X10 doesn't fit the 7X17. I process my 8X10 film in tubes made of grey conduit pipe, so off to the electical supply house monday to get more pipe & connectors. Moral of the story - when you double your format size, expect an exponential increase in costs.
    Last edited by Doug Howk; 23-Sep-2006 at 15:29.

  7. #7
    alec4444's Avatar
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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    Quote Originally Posted by Capocheny View Post
    I understand 11x14 holders are pretty hard to find and very expensive... so, fyi, there are a couple listed for sale on APUG and the bay at the moment.
    Thank you for the tip; I rarely check out APUG classifieds.... Oren, sent you a PM.

    Photos coming soon....can someone tell me how to use a Point & Shoot digital camera?

    --A

  8. #8

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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    Congratulations on the new camera. Before you buy the garden cart, take a look at this collapsible baby jogger. http://babyjogger.com/performancesingle.htm 20 inch spoked wheels, 100 lb shocks and both a brake and a parking brake. I carry my 7x17, a big Ries tripod and head with two of the spikes through the foot board, a padded freezer bag about a cubic foot full of lenses, meter, loupe, dark cloth. On the rails under the seat I carry four film holders in a bag. It can go over some pretty rough terrain or nicely down a trail. I've been using this 3 years (8x10 before the 7x17) and have been very happy with it. Got mine on eBay. The father of the child that had out grown it was pretty surprised at my planned use.

    John

  9. #9
    alec4444's Avatar
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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    Photos attached! Baby jogger...there's a thought. I'll keep an eye out for one in the various "stoop sales". (That's what we call a garage sale here in Brooklyn where nobody actually has a garage...) Was also looking at some roller cart bags like this one which are like modern day luggage. It offers a bit more compactness for negotiating subways...

    Oren's got a wait list going on for his holders... =( Found an old post saying that Jim from Midwest sells new Tachihara 11x14 filmholders for $300....that was in December 2004. Anyone know if that's still true? I sent an email off to him just in case.

    --A

  10. #10

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    Re: Got my 11x14 Yesterday!

    Quote Originally Posted by alec4444 View Post
    Photos attached! Baby jogger...there's a thought. I'll keep an eye out for one in the various "stoop sales". (That's what we call a garage sale here in Brooklyn where nobody actually has a garage...) Was also looking at some roller cart bags like this one which are like modern day luggage. It offers a bit more compactness for negotiating subways...

    Oren's got a wait list going on for his holders... =( Found an old post saying that Jim from Midwest sells new Tachihara 11x14 filmholders for $300....that was in December 2004. Anyone know if that's still true? I sent an email off to him just in case.

    --A

    Alec,

    Those baby strollers are great for use on relatively flat trails but don't work where the trails are rocky or where climbing is required. The problem with the roller cart bags (such as the one you've got linked to from B&H Photo) is that the wheels are too small for use on trails... the wheels tend to pick up little pieces and gets stuck. They're designed more for smooth, flat surfaces such as at the airport or on a sidewalk.

    Interestingly, at the workshop I was just at... there were two shooters using 8x10s that had these strollers. One of them even had air suspension wheels and hand brakes. The other one was more basic. The lesser version was $190... and some of the higher end ones run up to CDN$700!

    Yes, Oren's ad was the one I was thinking of when I posted earlier...

    FWIW, Jim at Midwest Photo is a great guy to deal with.

    And, what a gorgeous camera that is!

    Good luck

    Cheers
    Life in the fast lane!

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