View Full Version : Bag bellows problem on Arca

Herb Cunningham
24-Apr-2009, 07:53
I have not used my Nikon 75mm lens much, but yesterday i tried to take a shot of a building that was difficult -taking it required I have the camera very close, hence the 75mm.
My Arca leather bag bellows on the 4x5 kept getting in the way I putzed with it for a good 30 minutes, trying to fold the damn thing out of the viewing circle, to no avail. I finally chose another angle, and used the regular bellows with a longer lens.

Any tricks to keep vignetting down with this bellows? I don't have that problem with larger formats and Arca bag bellows.

24-Apr-2009, 09:28
The pleats can be a problem-
they need to be stored folded correctly to help to train them,
and even then, they can be stubborn-

I've got an odd fold in mine,
and I have to remember to put that end towards the lens,
so that the folds nearest the film are regular-

I'm talking about a 171 Arca, by the way-


Phil Hudson
24-Apr-2009, 11:16
I also experienced this problem with the Arca 171mm leather bellows. I ended up trading back for the synthetic bag bellows for lenses under 150mm, and standard 38cm bellows for longer stuff. No problems there.

Perhaps the newest ones have softer leather?

25-Apr-2009, 02:37
What could help is a couple of office-paper clamps to keep the extra bellows part out of the way........
Or have something flat black metal inside the bag-bellows to weigh the obstructive part out of the way.
I had a similar problem with my Sinar 8x10 bag-bellows, never had any with the 4x5 one.


25-Apr-2009, 09:27
I found that things worked a lot better with the bag bellows AND a very recessed board (2"+). Then I got tons of movement. Alone the bag only offered slightly more than the normal bellows.

neil poulsen
27-Apr-2009, 03:04
I have the 171mm Arca with the leather wide-angle bellows. I use an adaptor lensboard that I made from a 1" Arca recessed board. I don't have any problem with a 75mm, except that it's a little snug. I LOVE this bellows. Works for my 75mm up to 180mm.

For my recently acquired 58mm lens, I'll probably use the synthetic bellows that I picked up a few months ago. Of course, I won't have to worry too much about movements with this lens.

27-Apr-2009, 11:26
I should have mentioned, I use a 25mm recessed board for a 47mm,
for all other lenses, including a 72mm, I use a flat board-
I used to use a standard 13mm recessed board,
but I changed to a Linhof to Arca adapter board.

It works ok, but as I mentioned, the bellows must be stored folded,
in an effort to train them-

I'd be interested to hear if anyone uses anything to treat the leather;
mine haven't been fed since I got them, about six years ago...

Still look good though-

Herb Cunningham
28-Apr-2009, 12:00
Plan on training my bellows asap.