View Full Version : Lens boards and cable releases

12-Sep-2004, 09:48
I just bought my first 4x5 field camera. Shen Hao II. I am now getting all the accessories and goodies. I am going to make my first lens a 150 f5.6 Sironar-N. My question is how do I know which lens plates will fit what I have. I know midwest has Nikon-Technika Type Lens Boards #0, 1 and 3 will this brand fit my Shen Hao and does the shutter that come on the lens dictate which # to buy?

Are all cable releases universal?

Thanks for the advice.


Ralph Barker
12-Sep-2004, 10:08
Yes, and kind of. ;-)

Or, more specifically, yes, the shutter size determines which lensboard to get. There's also a chart of the various shutter sizes and corresponding physical hole sizes linked on the home page of this site, if you want to make your own lensboards.

Except for a few specialty cable releases that were designed for specific older cameras, most are "kind of" universal - almost all cable releases will fit (attach to) almost all shutters. Some will have longer "throws" than others, however - a fact that is handy for certain older shutters that are self-cocking. The same holds true for "self-timers" most often used with older 35mm cameras. Some have longer throws, or adjustable throws, so they can be set for the needs of the specific camera to avoid damaging the internal mechanism of the shutter release.

Danny Burk
12-Sep-2004, 10:11
Hi Brent,

Imagine seeing you here ;)

The boards that you suggest will be fine. Yes, the hole size is dictated by the particular lens that you want. Many photographers, particularly those whose cameras use Technika-sized lensboards, try to avoid lenses that need Copal #3 shutters because they tend to be large and heavy, and may possibly present a problem fitting into the camera front if the rear element is oversized. You should have no problem limiting your choices to those that use #0 and #1 boards.

I'd suggest about 18-20" length for your cable releases; too short and they can transmit vibration if you're holding it taut; too long and they just get in the way. I'd avoid buying the cheapest releases, as they have a way of breaking frequently; ALWAYS carry at least one spare release with you!

Regards, Danny www.dannyburk.com

Gem Singer
12-Sep-2004, 10:20
The Shen Hao uses the standard Linhof Tech. type lensboards. These are made by Shen Hao, Tachihara, Wista, Bromwell, Ebony, Nikon, and , of course, Linhof. All will fit the Shen Hao. When we had a Shen Hao, we used the Nikon lensboards. They were reasonably priced, good quality, and worked very well. Steer away from the "genuine" Shen Hao lensboards.

Your 150 Sironar-N is mounted in a Copal 0 shutter. The lensboards come already milled to fit either Copal 0, Copal 1, Copal 3 shutters, or blank (un-milled), so that you can have the lensboard milled to any diameter you need, depending on the size of the shutter you are using.

Most cable releases have tapered screw-in connectors that can be used with all sizes of Copal (and other) shutters. The Gepe cable releases in the 20, or 40 inch lengths, with "T" locks, are very well built and easy to use. They are available in a choice of sheathing (black cloth, metal, plastic, etc.) I like the ones that are sheathed in black plastic.

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