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Thread: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

  1. #11

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Despite what everyone says, you'll find your DSLR lens will work really well on 4X5. There really are only three problems or issues to deal with:

    1. No one makes adaptors, but you can easily make one using parts from the inexpensive extension tubes from ebay. Just cut a large enough hole in a lens board and epoxy the lens adaptor end of the extension tubes to the lens board.
    2. A Packard shutter can be used in front of the lens, if you can figure out a mount.
    3. All of your subjects must be within 6 inches of the lens as it won't focus any further than that and have an image circle that covers 4X5.

  2. #12

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Quote Originally Posted by el french View Post
    Despite what everyone says, you'll find your DSLR lens will work really well on 4X5. There really are only three problems or issues to deal with:

    1. No one makes adaptors, but you can easily make one using parts from the inexpensive extension tubes from ebay. Just cut a large enough hole in a lens board and epoxy the lens adaptor end of the extension tubes to the lens board.
    2. A Packard shutter can be used in front of the lens, if you can figure out a mount.
    3. All of your subjects must be within 6 inches of the lens as it won't focus any further than that and have an image circle that covers 4X5.
    Whilst this is a good general assessment of the situation, I don't think the last point is quite right.
    Yes, Suitable coverage will only be achieved in macro work where you have considerable extension, but the distance to the subject will be a function of focal length.
    A DSLR fisheye lens will probably need the subject inside the lens to get enough coverage (unless reversed). Some long telephotos might get enough coverage at distances a bit more than 6". Ideally of course you want long focal length lenses that are NOT telephoto designs, but I doub't this will apply to any of your SLR lenses.

    It may be possible to use something along the lines of a tele-converter to increase the coverage of your SLR lenses - but bear in mind the most DSLR lenses have insufficient coverage even for 35mm being intended instead for cropped sensors.

    Mounting LF lenses on a DSLR is much the easier problem

  3. #13

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Won't it be almost impossible to stop down a DSLR lens on 4x5 as the aperture is controlled by a linkage on the mount?

  4. #14
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Benjaminixon, you can use Nikon lenses on a Graphic, but only for limited purposes. Naysayers just didn't think far enough outside the box. I occasionally use a 21mm (Leica, not Nikon) lens reverse mounted on a Graphic or view camera for macro photography. It gives about 4X or more magnification on film. Due to very shallow depth of field, it is most useful on flat subjects. The lack of a focal plane shutter is usually just an inconvenience, not an insurmountable obstacle. The shot can be set up and then all lights extinguished before the dark slide is withdrawn. Exposure is controlled by the lights, not the shutter. Photographers have been doing this for a century and a half.

    To reverse mount a small camera lens on a Crown, attach a filter ring (with the glass removed) to the lens board with the threads on the front of the board. This might be the most difficult part of the whole project. I use an old Anniversary Graphic and view cameras that take the same wooden boards. With these, it's easy to inset the ring in a rabbeted recess in the board and epoxy it into place. Epoxy might not hold a ring on a Crown board. The metal around the hole in a Crown board can be thinned so a second filter ring can be used as a retaining ring.

  5. #15

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Sorry to come in late on this discussion. Ben, Leigh and I often disagree but this time he's nailed you squarely.

    The Nikon F mount's flange-to-film distance is 46.5 mm. A lens in F-mount whose flange it more than 46.5 mm from the film plane can't be focused on infinity. The 4x5 -- I assume that's the size you have -- Crown Graphic's minimum flange-to-film distance is 52.4 mm. You're nailed.

    A lens in F mount can be attached to a lens board but for the lens to focus to infinity on a 4x5 Crown Graphic the adapter will have to have negative length. Such things exist, they're called recessed lens boards, but there are none for 4x5 Graphics. You're nailed again.

    As has been pointed out, lenses for 35 mm cameras are designed to provide good image quality over a 43 mm circle. When one is put on a 4x5 camera it will give a good image 43 mm in diameter. It may illuminate -- put light on -- a larger circle but there's no guarantee that image quality will be acceptable outside of the circle the lens is designed to cover.

    ic, there are ways to put a shutter on a barrel lens that won't add extension but they're not inexpensive. And neither are shutters that run on time. The OP wants to play around, not make a major investment. BTW, 35 mm snapshotters and their digital equivalents have a very different concept of "inexpensive" than LF users do.

    proteus617, Nikon, in their infinite wisdom, offer two short extension tubes that allow F-mount Nikkors to be stopped down off the camera. E-2, which is push to open, and BR-4, which is push to stop down. I sometimes use a BR-4 with a double cable release.

  6. #16

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    This guy has to be a troll, it reminds me of the time I told people my view camera was broken because the images were upside down and people fell all over themselves to explain basic camera optics.

    If he is not a troll, then he should buy a basic book on photography or, better yet, duct tape his Nikkor to his Crown and try to focus.

  7. #17

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    You might use such a 35mm lens on a view camera with extra extension via the bellows to use it for extreme macro close-ups. It's likely the only scenario where the image circle made by the smaller format lens will be adequate for use with 4x5 and yet the Crown won't be ideal. This is something others have no doubt experimented with, and well within the realm of possibility.

  8. #18

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Jones View Post
    To reverse mount a small camera lens on a Crown, attach a filter ring (with the glass removed) to the lens board with the threads on the front of the board. This might be the most difficult part of the whole project. I use an old Anniversary Graphic and view cameras that take the same wooden boards. With these, it's easy to inset the ring in a rabbeted recess in the board and epoxy it into place. Epoxy might not hold a ring on a Crown board. The metal around the hole in a Crown board can be thinned so a second filter ring can be used as a retaining ring.
    There is another option for reverse mounting lenses that can be made to work on a large format camera. Combine a standard SLR lens mount on the inside of a lens board, so the lens is within the bellows!
    SLR mounts for such insane projects can be taken from cheap Chinese extension tube sets (there are sets under $10).
    In use you'd obviously have to be careful not to bring your lens to close to the rear standard, but to get a decent image the lens to film distance will want to be reasonable anyway.

    Of course the result will still only be of use for macro, so might not be of any interest to the OP.

  9. #19

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Quote Originally Posted by petrochemist View Post
    There is another option for reverse mounting lenses that can be made to work on a large format camera. Combine a standard SLR lens mount on the inside of a lens board, so the lens is within the bellows!
    How, pray, does one get to the lens to adjust its aperture?

    More seriously, the standard way to use a lens made for a 35 mm camera for macro work on a larger format is to reverse the lens in front of a leaf shutter. This allows the lens to be oriented correctly for working about 1:1, allows timed exposures, and allows the use of flash. The 55/2.8 MicroNikkor shot this way at f/4 is very competitive with a wide open 63/4.5 Luminar, is much less expensive, and is easier to find.

  10. #20

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    Re: Prime slr lens on a crown graphic??!

    Maybe a troll, but I never thought of using SLR lens for macro on a view camera. Aside from the convenience issues, are there technical advantages to using one vs using a regular macro lens designed for LF?

    --Darin

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