View Full Version : Vertical Banquet Camera Project

Blacky Dalton
9-Jul-2005, 14:44
Here is an interesting DIY camera project that just showed up on this web site;


This is a complicated camera building project!

B. Dalton

domenico Foschi
9-Jul-2005, 15:23
That's craftmanship! What a beautiful camera, thank you Blacky.

Jim Ewins
9-Jul-2005, 16:28
Perhaps one could say awesome.

Steve McKinney
9-Jul-2005, 18:28

Brian C. Miller
9-Jul-2005, 18:35
Now, that's something to eat up the idle hours you'd otherwise spend in the darkroom! :-)

I remember learning all of that stuff in commercial shop class in high school. Shop was a requirement, and all of it was geared for commercial application. No bird houses, but we learned how to install counters, cabinets, run lathes, etc.

I'm glad I live in a small apartment. I'd wouldn't produce many pictures because I'd have so much fun doing stuff like that. My Dremel projects are bad enough...

Brian C. Miller
9-Jul-2005, 18:44
I went over their website, and I realised that there are no vertical "panoramic" pictures. Here we have monster vertical cameras, and no associated pictures! Bummer!

Oren Grad
9-Jul-2005, 19:03
Brian, there are a couple on the last page of the sequence:

www.jbhphoto.com/vcam/vcams4.htm (http://www.jbhphoto.com/vcam/vcams4.htm)

Michael Kadillak
9-Jul-2005, 19:44

I have always been an admirer of ingenuity and the willingness to execute especially when it is beyond ones current expertise. Hats off to this husband and wife team!

Makes you feel good that there are still people in this country that can say "Why Not" and make it happen.

I can think of no better avenue for his project than to kindly request that it be put it into some form of sharing content. A book, CD or at the very least a presentation to a ULF conference. This knowledge base needs to shared.


Paul Fitzgerald
9-Jul-2005, 22:55
Hi there,

Thanks for the link. Is there ANY doubt large format is alive and well? Those projects are marvelous.

Thanks for the smile.

Brian Vuillemenot
10-Jul-2005, 00:58
What a beautiful camera- looks like a Wisner copy. Doesn't Wisner make vertical banquet cameras? He claims he does on his website...

10-Jul-2005, 01:06
Not meaning to diminish in any way their fine work.... but it sure looks like a Wisner - right down to the choice of anodizing.
One way to beat the wait! :-)

Paul Moshay
10-Jul-2005, 01:20
This is the most amazing thing I have seen in the camera building world. Wish they would build one for me, hang the cost!

Michael A.Smith
10-Jul-2005, 04:53
Quite a project indeed, and it is beautiful, but making a vertical camera does not have to be that complicated. Back in the early 1980s I took an old 8x20 Korona and had it converted to a vertical camera. It is not nearly as elegant as the one this fellow is making, but it only took a few days to do.

10-Jul-2005, 05:59
I must say it looks almost identical to my new Wisner 8x20 Expedition. I had Ron make a vertical back for mine also. The only difference I can see in the two is my Wisner has a double sliding bed on the front standard giving me 50 inches of draw. The problem with the Wisner conversion is the Wisner is built on a 8x10 bed and the front standard is an 8x10 to allow the camera to fold up into the transport position. Now when you put the 8x20 vertical back on the short 8x10 standard will not allow for the lens to reach the sweet spot on the ground glass. Even with a radical bed tilt the lens still not reach. Going vertical with this format has the biggest difference in size...12".... no other format has that big of difference. To solve this problem I had Ron build another complete front bed and standard using the vertical rails from a 16x20 standard. When I change backs it only takes a couple of seconds to roll the other longer standard in place, giving me all the rise I need and plenty more for movements. But when you change backs you must change front standards because the longer front standard will not fold up into transport position with the longer rails in the horizontal position. This means I have to carry an extra front standard with the extra back but that has not been a problem. The expedition 8x20 weighs 14lb. With the longer front standard a few ounces more. I see the beautiful camera this guy is building has the longer vertical rails on the front standard which is what is needed. But if he goes to a horizontal back he will not be able to fold it up into the transport position. Now we mulled over a design that would incorporate a telescoping vertical rail using a dove tail design sliding within itself but I wasn't willing to wait for that to materialize at Wisner Mfg. This would allow for both backs to be used with one front standard. I'm very happy with what I decided for Ron to do. It works beautifully and looks awesome. I will post some pics as soon as I can get this old digital camera to work on my new Mac. I have to purchase a card reader to work because this camera has no firewire feature. It is great to see someone doing this kind of craftsmanship at home. The tooling he has is worth a fortune alone. Beautiful work......I agree Michael this would make a great story for View Camera

10-Jul-2005, 06:10
I hope that wasn't too confusing