View Full Version : Power to an Ilex 5 shutter

Matthew Lea
11-Aug-2004, 09:55
I have recently purchased a Kodak 14" Commercial lens with an Ilex 5 shutter. The shuttered is powered by cord that plugs into a wall socket.

How can I use this shutter in the field?

Donald Brewster
11-Aug-2004, 10:26
Unless I'm completely missing something, the shutter operation is purely mechanical (at least it is on my version of your lens). The cord is for flash sync, which you are not likely to be using in the field. The cord should be removable leaving just the bi-post.

Gem Singer
11-Aug-2004, 10:41

For your sake, DO NOT PLUG THAT CORD ONTO THE WALL! You're going to blow out a circuit breaker, give yourself a hell of a shock, and ruin a perfectly good shutter. That cord is for attaching a flash attachment to the shutter.

Merely unplug the cord from the shutter and put it away. An Ilex #5 is a mechanical shutter, not an electrically operated shutter.

Matthew Lea
11-Aug-2004, 10:43
This is why I asked. Did I forget to mention that I am new to large format.

Thanks for your help.

11-Aug-2004, 10:48
Boy, that was a close one!!...

Ralph Barker
11-Aug-2004, 11:45
Your shutter should look similar to this, Matthew:


Note the two pins at the lower left of the shutter. That's the bi-post flash sync connector. Adapter cords often adapt that to what looks like a regular U.S. extension cord connector, a fairly standard intermediate connection for studio sync cords.

There are, however, Ilex electronic shutters, too, that require a timer/power adapter unit. I don't believe the Kodak Commercial Ektars were factory-mounted in electronic shutters, but it's possible that your's could have been remounted. Those shutters will clearly say "electronic" on the face, though.

Gem Singer
11-Aug-2004, 13:01
Hello again Matthew,

Glad we were able to a possible disaster.

That type of cord is called a "bi-post to household" adapter cord. Depending on their length, they are much sought after and valuable. If you are not planning on using yours, try selling it on E-Bay.

David A. Goldfarb
11-Aug-2004, 13:13
I have and use "bi-post to household" cords, but I've heard they are identical to "electric razor" cords. Never having owned an electric razor, I'm not sure of that, but I suspect they are cheaper than bi-post to household cords on eBay.

Mark Sampson
11-Aug-2004, 13:27
There's little reason to buy bi-post to household (or bi-post to PC) cords on ebay since they are available new from Paramount. Matthew, the lever at 1:00 in the photo above cocks the shutter, the lever at 11:00 fires the shutter, or use a cable release. The small pushbutton at 12:00 opens the shutter for viewing. To use flash, once you find the appropriate sync cord, you'll have to seperately cock the synchronization with the lever seen at 8:00 above. Set its dial to 'X'(red) for electronic flash.

James E Galvin
11-Aug-2004, 14:04
You state Ilex #5. The pic above is Ilex Acme #4, which works differently. You don't cock an Ilex #5, just fire it. The operating lever both cocks and fires the shutter in one motion. Most other shutters have seperate levers for cocking and firing. A cable release for the #5 must have a long throw, I had to try several cables to find one that will push far enough. The standard of using "houshold" plugs for flash synch is very bad, a severe hazard both to life and the equipment, but still very common. A shaver cord does indeed work on the bipost, and my couple years old Novatron flash wants "houshold" synch in. Just don't plug it into the wall! If someody is helping you set up a flash shot, and you have extension cords and synch cords, it would be very easy to plug synch into 110v, making the camera hot and blowing the contacts in the shutter if it was fired!