View Full Version : Graflok holders: exposure issues

24-Jul-2007, 11:00
Going out shooting today I had a senior moment and detached the graflok back from the camera with an exposed sheet of film (no. 5) staring at me in disbelief.

What happens to the other exposures - no.1, 2,3,4 and 6? I didn't have the darkslide locked down. Will I have completely screwed my chances with the rest of the film through accidental exposure?

I decided to prise out the film sheet and shoot on. This was Velvia 50 film too. Is it a write-off or would it be worthwhile developing these? It's not happened to me before: this only serves to make it more depressing.

douglas antonio
24-Jul-2007, 12:03
hi rob,

am i right that you are talking about a grafmatic?
if so, i had a similar experience when the septums on mine got jammed.
since i had an important shoot i managed to get the grafmatic to work and continued shooting. the rest of the sheets where fine.

so if it is a grafmatic i would develope the rest of the sheets shot.
they should be okay.
nothing else happens when you pull out the dark slide to expose when you actually shoot. the rest are always secure of being exposed while the one opened IS exposed.

Glenn Thoreson
24-Jul-2007, 12:08
I assume you are refering to a Grafmatic sheet film holder. The other sheets should be fine. If in future this should happen, just cycle the bad sheet through as if nothing happened. When you remove the stack of exposed film, you can find the bad one easily. They are stacked in reverse order, number one being on the bottom of the stack. Trying to remove film as you did raises a real danger of damaging the septum, rendering it useless. Good luck.

24-Jul-2007, 14:12
Hi ,

thanks guys. It is indeed a Grafmatic film holder.

I think there's something wrong with mine (or has developed something wrong). The red dot showing "exposing" has vanished!! I can't remember not seeing it there. But it isn't something that can rub off easily either. How confusing.

When I look at the film, I notice that there is a notch across all six septums (bottom left, when the Grafmatic is held vertically, film side towards viewer). I'm just worried that the light leak across the first sheet will transmit to the second, and then then the third, and so on because I hadn't put the dark slide in.

The next disaster is having found traces of sand in 5 double darkslides and the Grafmatics ;(

Glenn - thanks for pointing that out. I

Chauncey Walden
24-Jul-2007, 14:42
Glenn, in all my Grafmatics after shooting #6, #1 is on top again;-).

Glenn Thoreson
24-Jul-2007, 18:59
Chauncy, you're right. I was thinking of bag mags, which I also use.
Rob, the red dot indicates the film is in position for exposing, but if you have used all 6 sheets, it won't show until you reload it and #1 is again in position. The notches on the septums are so you can pull the film out of the septum. BTW, sand is not a good thing.

Kevin Crisp
24-Jul-2007, 19:26
If the back pulls away from the camera when you are cycling the slide there will be fogging of all sheets some worse than others. If you pulled it away or removed it accidentally from the camera with the slide in behind the sheet on top, that should be the only on you ruined.

David A. Goldfarb
25-Jul-2007, 04:51
What Kevin says is correct.

If you pull the darkslide with the back off the camera, the top sheet will be completely exposed, and the sheets underneath will be fogged in the area around the notch in the septums. Even if the case, it's worth processing the other five sheets, because it might not be too bad, depending on how strong the ambient light is, length of exposure, amount of cropping space, etc.

If you've exposed the top sheet and the darkslide is in, then put the holder back in the camera and cycle it to the next sheet to avoid fogging the other sheets.

25-Jul-2007, 13:30
Thanks guys.

I've checked and it is only one particular Grafmatic which has around 2-4 degrees of give when the cassette is extended from the Grafmatic holder. Sometimes the holder jams and won't go back in unless angled properly.

Anyone know of an internet guide to refurbishing these Grafmatic holders? They are very practical and I quite like these when they work well..

douglas antonio
25-Jul-2007, 18:59

don't know what you actually intend doing, but you can find a repair manual at
http://www.southbristolviews.com/. go to "graflex manuals" and there you will see a
"graflex 45 service manual" for download.
got my grafmatics to work again by following that.

hope that helps!?


Gene McCluney
29-Jul-2007, 10:04
If you took the grafmatic off the camera with the darkslide in (not extended) and one sheet of film was visible, then the darkslide behind this sheet will prevent fogging of the other sheets. In using a grafmatic, you cycle to a new sheet up by pulling the whole "carriage" out and back in, then when ready to shoot you cycle just the darkslide out and in. This leaves a new sheet in position for exposure, while protecting the remaining sheets. After shooting you cycle the carriage in and out, and this puts all sheets behind the darkslide, safe. Then for the next shot you just cycle the darkslide out and in. You should never shoot with the darkslide in the out position, as this could give fogging of all sheets.

Gene McCluney
29-Jul-2007, 10:06
If you establish a routine with the grafmatic, then the red dot visible or not really doesn't matter. I have some holders where the red dot doesn't work.

29-Jul-2007, 11:24
Well guys -

it looks like you're right. The first sheet was flashed with light and has marks over the image to indicate this. The subsequent sheet behind the first one has a white overexposed burn out area corresponding to where the notch is. Unless I mixed up my sheets, I think these come from the same grafmatic.

Douglas - that's very good info. Thank you for the resource. Looks like I'll be getting the screwdrivers out on one of my Grafmatics.

Thank you Gene - I have a routine with my Grafmatics - it isn't working! Getting back into the groove of using these. The red dot matters to me, because most of my Grafmatics have it. With the solitary one which doesn't, in a moment of lapse, I take it out accidentally. That's why completely standardising the Grafmatics back to the way I'm used to working is important with the Grafmatics.

Kevin Crisp
29-Jul-2007, 13:28
Rob: I am not saying this is your problem; I pass this on only since it took me so long to figure it out. Grafmatics do much better if you cycle the slide when the camera is horizontal and level. They tend to jam much more often if you point them down when cycling. It is very common when testing one out for jamming to hold it back side up, which makes it the problem worse. I assume you know about the metal tab that has to be pushed back (sometimes) when loading?

29-Jul-2007, 14:46
Thanks Kevin - this is definitely the case with my 'dodgy' Grafmatic - the one which doesn't show the red dot and has a few degrees of give, such that the grafmatic sheaths fail to slide back into closed and contracted position when extended, unless perfectly angle.

I don't point them down - ever; partly because I seem to only them in horizontal shooting. Very limited - got to get out there more.

When I push the metal tab it locks and gives as it should do, preventing accidental miscarriage. This bit is no problem. I think I'll try and service it according to the links..