View Full Version : Identifying Crown Graphic back and questions on compatible holders!

14-Apr-2013, 19:23
Hey guys!

Apologies in advance for the silly questions... I'm new to all this, and just a little confused. There's a whole sea of information here, which I've spent about an hour looking through. I just want to confirm what I've found!

I recently picked up a 4x5 Crown Graphic with what appears to be the graflok back... but I'm not too sure. In all honesty, I've never handled a large format camera before, nor have I ever seen the back one one! The back I own looks a lot like the one shown here (borrowed from this website (http://lommen9.home.xs4all.nl/holders/), a very helpful website), which I believe is the Graflok Back:


Here's a photograph of mine, Graflok back right?


Summer is coming up and I thought it'd be fun to shoot a few instant frames, memories I can hang up on my studio desk, or pass out to friends. I'd really like to avoid the expensive routes like buying old Polaroid film, or dying pack film.

So... from what I've read so far, Fuji stopped production of their 4x5 instant films (plus, I can't seem to find any of it on B&H, Freestyle, or the local Henry's), which leaves 3x4 Fuji FP-100c instant film. And to use that film, I'd need a Polaroid 405 back? And if I have a Graflok back, I'd be ready to go once I have the holder and film? No need to modify anything, right?

And the only way that I'd shoot 4x5 instant pack film would be with the Fuji PA45 or Polaroid 550 back, but films for those are out of production and would probably be really pricey?

I'm wondering if it would be more cost efficient to buy an SX-70 and some impossible project film. There's an SX-70 for sale locally now for $125, PX film is $28.35 per pack of 8 shots here. A 405 back on ebay costs at least $260 after shipping, plus I might get hit by an import tax, bringing the entire package closer to $300. A pack of FP-100c (10 shots) is about $10 here. If I were to use it only for the summer... It would definitely be a better investment to go for an SX-70. But if I were to do this long term... it would be better to go for the 405 back, plus... shooting 3x4 instant film on a Crown Graphic would yield beautiful results (though, the SX-70 might be faster, a tad more fun and portable).

Aii... so many options!

Jim Jones
14-Apr-2013, 20:16
Yes, it's a Graflok back.

14-Apr-2013, 20:41
My $.02 is go with the Fuji film, it's about 100 times better than the Impossible and far less expensive too.

Keep your eyes out for Polaroid 405 (or Fuji PA-145) backs you'll likely be able to get one for $175-200.

14-Apr-2013, 20:44
Thanks Jim!

15-Apr-2013, 10:38
Agreed with adelorenzo. FP100c is miles better than anything from impossible project. I found a 405 back for about $100 on ebay within the last few months so deals are out there. (actually i got the Fuji PA-145 back which is even better).

FP100c45 is still available. The upside is the backs are cheap - well under $100 easily. The downside is the film is pricey, $55-75/box of 10 on Ebay and elsewhere. But it is a nice bigger print than the 3x4 stuff. Fp100c is good for at least a couple years past it's exp. date, btw.

I shoot both sizes of FP100c on crown and speed graphics, and it's a blast. Much more satisfying than an sx-70, though I have one of those too.


John Koehrer
18-Apr-2013, 12:48
The SX70 cameras go from about $35.00-$150 on the bay so the local one is near the high end of the range.

18-Apr-2013, 21:12
Thanks for the advice guys!

I ended up with an SX-70 and some Impossible film... you're right, the Fuji instant film would have been much better, but it's nice to see someone trying to get integral film for these wonderful cameras going again. They might be overcharging us, they might be in it to make money, but at least they're sort of keeping an interesting part of photography alive. Plus they gave me two free packs of film when I complained about their horrible color rendition ;)

Anyway, I hope to find a deal like Ed's 'cause it'd be good to shoot both formats!

John, if the shipping to Canada on those cameras wasn't so high ($50!!) I'd buy from ebay! Well... I might. I think I'm gonig to try and get my girlfriend one :)

I hope you don't mind me sharing some SX-70 photos!