View Full Version : Reliable 5x7 Film Holders

David Aimone
6-Jun-2016, 18:32
I've been shooting 5x7 film for a few months now, and I've purchased a bunch of 5x7 film holders from various sources, mainly her and JP labs. I've cleaned, inspected and performed modest repairs on many of them, but I still seem to get a lot of light leaks. Also, even though they all "fit", they seem to be slightly different sizes on the outside as well as slightly different size image areas on the film.

Where can I get standard, very reliable 5x7 film holders? I'm tired of hit and miss...

Michael Roberts
6-Jun-2016, 18:43
David, have you done a light test in your darkroom by inserting each of the various-sized holders in the camera (unloaded) and shining a flashlight into the interior? If there are leaks, you should see light around the holders.

Also, try this in reverse--remove the camera back and shine a light in to test for leaks around each of your lens boards.

David Aimone
6-Jun-2016, 18:47

I have not tried that, I guess that would be a first good step. I'm thinking film holders but it could also be lens board leaks.

And I'm still trying to standardize on a few lenses to use with the King Poco. The adapter is convenient, but adds another layer to the mix, so I'm going to try to mount three good lenses without the adapter.

Jim Noel
7-Jun-2016, 08:41
Each manufacturer's holders produce image areas slightly different in size.

9-Jun-2016, 14:48
I don't think anyone makes them anymore except some Chinese wooden ones? If you check eBay NIB ones do come up

Greg Y
9-Jun-2016, 15:17
David, I would also suggest checking the camera, & i'll probably jinx myself by saying this. I use an old Deardorff, w/ an assortment of holders and a Grimes Deardorff to Linhof board adapter (for some lenses) . The law of averages would lean towards a camera leak if you keep consistently having problems with all your holders.

9-Jun-2016, 17:45
5x7 holders are expensive, but you've probably got dozens, I know I do [payed $50ea for some 'new' ones].
I've picked my 10 best holders, and use those, using a changing tent when in the field. Personally, I've
never shot more than 20 sheets in the field in a day. If I did, I could probably stand a break and reload
some holders :)

David Aimone
9-Jun-2016, 17:48
I think I've found the problem mostly with lens board fitting, but there are a few troublesome film holders too. And it really does bother me that there are greatly varying shapes and sizes of exposure area. You'd think 5x7 would be closely standardized to 5x7 but I guess not!


9-Jun-2016, 18:11
Not to mention 5x7/13x18/half plate all with the same external dimensions

And film nominally the same size from different manufacturers being slightly different