View Full Version : Beseler 4x5 Press Camera: How do I operate the focal plane shutter?

29-Jun-2015, 17:22
I recently obtained a Beseler 4x5 Press Camera ( http://camera-wiki.org/wiki/Beseler_4x5_Press_Camera ). It is a really interesting camera, and I haven't used it much. But I am looking to have it replace most of my equipment soon. It has a focal plane shutter built into it like a speed graphic as well as a leaf shutter in the lens. However, I am not familiar on how to operate the focal plane shutter on this camera. Sure, I can use the leaf shutter on the lens currently on it, but I would like to use some barrel lenses, and I will need the focal plane shutter for those. I have used one similar to it on a century graphic, but this one looks different and I am worried if I start twisting knobs and playing with it I am going to break it. Does anyone happen to have a manual or anything for this uncommon camera that will tell me more about how to use it or specifically an instructional on how to operate it's focal plane shutter?

Thank you very much for your time.

Jim C.
29-Jun-2015, 17:59
That's a sweet looking camera, never knew Beseler even made cameras.

I Googled and found this -

It's in French, but scrolling down you can see the OP had taken the focal plane shutter out and labeled
some of the workings. The mechanism looks very complicated compared to a Speed Graphics FPS

Dan Fromm
29-Jun-2015, 18:06

Louis Pacilla
30-Jun-2015, 04:46
I owned a mint Beseler Press 4x5 and traded it for a fully restored Graflex Home Portrait that even had a beautiful spring back that had been registered with reflex hood ground glass.

Great FP shutter that's not hard to figure out on the Beseler but it has a small front standard and a Tiny lens board something like 2 1/2" x 2 3/4" if that big. My friend spent a good bit of cash having the lens board increased by a 1/4" on all sides at about $200 per side.