View Full Version : Camera Builders

23-Apr-2014, 13:31
Besides Richard Ritter (a really busy man), are there any other film camera builders in the US? Steve at Blackart, Ray at Star and Ty are purely wet plate camera builders. For those of us with zero woodworking skills, it would be great to have someone who can do custom stuff beside Richard who is up to his ears in work.

23-Apr-2014, 13:45
I'm set up with a fair amount of gear and the skills to use it. I built my own 8x10 and have done custom work for those in need of lens board adapters, bellows frames, etc.

Tin Can
23-Apr-2014, 14:20
You gotta plan far ahead. Ritter is worth the wait.

Kieth Canham make wonderful cameras also.


23-Apr-2014, 14:46
You gotta plan far ahead. Ritter is worth the wait.

Kieth Canham make wonderful cameras also.


I forgot Keith totally. He is also busy and I doubt he does any custom stuff.

23-Apr-2014, 14:57
RR is definitely worth the wait. He is working on a project for me. I just wanted something else started.

23-Apr-2014, 15:29
As a hobby I am building medium format metal bodied cameras which are really of the most elementary box camera concept.
Sitting in armchair, the idea seems rather simple. But I find the details to be fairly complex and it is an absorbing hobby in my workshop which has a 1936 vintage lathe and an elementary home built milling machine among other simple tools.
I am also learning about old lenses, shutters, and the weird camera threads, along the way.

I started out by adapting Takumar 6x7 lenses to the 4 x5 Speed Graphic with RH/8.

The first camera I built was so simple yet light and nice to use hand held, takes excellent photos

The second camera in progress is actually an extensive rebuild of a simple process camera involving reversing the lens and replacing the Polaroid back with an RH/10. I do a few hours per week and it will take a few more months. This kind of project is about 70% figuring out what to do and 15% actually machining metal and 15% measuring it all for fit and accuracy.

The third camera will have an electronically controlled solenoid shutter, still collecting parts, making sketches etc. Still undecided on the lens and whether to do a 4 x5 field style or stay with the medium format.

Lastly but importantly I have received a lot of assistance on the forums on these projects.

Greg Davis
23-Apr-2014, 17:15
Canham will do custom stuff, you just have to be willing to pay for it.

William Whitaker
23-Apr-2014, 17:40
What do you want done?

23-Apr-2014, 17:59
A studio camera, built like a Century 8a, 14x17. For studio work, that would be awesome.