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Thread: Light leak troubleshooting followup.

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  1. #1

    Light leak troubleshooting followup.

    Problem solved! Well, problem identified, anyway. I had previously posted about some maddening light leaks here:

    http://www.largeformatphotography.in...ad.php?t=66490

    I ran a test on the back porch: two identical exposures with the sun at my back. The first (attachment #012 below), I shot with my normal technique. The second (#011), following Peter's suggestion in the previous thread, with the dark cloth draped over me & the camera during the entire dark-slide-removal-and-shooting portion of the process.

    The former is obviously plagued with light leaks (I sort of baited this problem by standing there for a few seconds with the dark slide out before shooting, but not for an unreasonable length of time.)

    So one solution is obvious: just shoot with the dark cloth shielding the back of the camera every time. No problem on calm days, but the setup is sort of unwieldy, especially when making room to get the dark slide out to the side of the camera back, and I can just imagine that it will be a pain on windy days.

    So: what tips do you have for ensuring the light-tightness of the camera back & film holder? Or is this a normal condition that I ought to just get used to?

    Many thanks for your suggestions!

    Cheers,

    Rob
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 092010-dakotascans-011.jpg   092010-dakotascans-012.jpg  

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    1,814

    Re: Light leak troubleshooting followup.

    Perhaps there is a problem with the back that can be otherwise corrected.

    However, to address the darkcloth isuue. I have always done, and advocated, what you demonstrated with the darkcloth. Cover the camera back and holder, pull the slide leaving darkcloth in place, make exposure, return slide to holder.

    I have never, in over fifty years, had a fogged or light struck film using this procedure. There have been posts to this forum that such a procedure is unwise and will turn your camera into a sail. I have never had that experience nor assumed that a film holder or camera back, in daylight, will be 100% light tight.

  3. #3

    Re: Light leak troubleshooting followup.

    Thanks Merg! It occurs to me that I might be able to accomplish the same goal by fashioning one of those fuzzy Domke lens wraps into a small camera shade that will be a little more handy than the full dark cloth. But if the final prescription is shading the back of the camera, I can live with that.

  4. #4
    Eric Biggerstaff
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    1,150

    Re: Light leak troubleshooting followup.

    Like Merg said, use a darkcloth, one less thing to have to carry.

    I cover not only the back but the bellows as well, right up to the lens sometimes. It can be a pain in a breeze but clothespins or little clamps take care of it. It the wind is much higher than that I usually stay home and watch the boob toob.
    Eric Biggerstaff

    www.ericbiggerstaff.com

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Location
    Baraboo, Wisconsin
    Posts
    7,742

    Re: Light leak troubleshooting followup.

    While I do as Merg suggests and use the darkcloth over the holder as a precaution, you really shouldn't have to do that to prevent light leaks unless the sun is shining straight into the holder and you leave the dark slide out for an unusually long time. I'd try to find and fix the problem, then continue doing as Merg suggests but as a precaution rather than a necessity.
    Brian Ellis
    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you do criticize them you'll be
    a mile away and you'll have their shoes.

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