View Full Version : Show us your modifications!

1-Mar-2011, 02:24
Searching for various mods to cameras I realised nobody has bothered to have a single thread with each person's modifications. This means that you probably miss a great deal of help every time you want to know about a conversion to a different format, or an extension, or whatever.

It would be particularly useful to have them all in one place, to inspire, assist, or gawk at.

So here's the "rules"...

Short description:

If each person can follow that pattern it may help when some. The short description can include extra info like timeframe, cost, what additional tools/materials/parts were used. Generally it should be concise but helpful.

If anyone has already had a long thread about the modification, then it could be linked within the post. Also, if the photos are uploaded to the forum it may help broken links a few years down the line.

1-Mar-2011, 02:29
Camera: Anniversary Speed Graphic

Modification: Strip-down

Short description: Removed internal shutter, rangefinder, viewfinder. Filled gaps. Idea was initially to make the shutter work properly but broke it, so I made the camera as light as possible instead. Sprayed a few coats of black. Ended up giving it to a friend, she used it for her degree.


1-Mar-2011, 02:35
Camera: Kodak Ground Camera (5x7/Half Plate)

Modification: Strip the paint + build reducer back

Short description: Strip down, coated the wood. Filled a few holes. Built the reducer back. Too heavy to carry around really. Got it super cheap, probably should never have sold it. Came with its original case and extension rail.



1-Mar-2011, 02:40
Camera: Goerz Anschütz 13x18

Modification: 5x7 modern back, modern shutter, focus helical.

Short description: Stripped the faulty namesake from the camera. Pulled out everything that didn't need to be on it. Fixed a modern 5x7 back deep into the camera. Put the Goerz 180/6.8 + Copal shutter onto a focus helical and fixed in place. May still work out a reducer board and recessed lensboard for infinity focus (reversible to allow close focus).



Drew Bedo
4-Mar-2011, 05:52
Description: Mounted a Bausch & Lomb "Discoverer" spotting scope (15 to 60 X zoom). Put an Alifax #3 shutter (from an oscilloscope camera) on a lens board. Made a wooden bracket to hold the camera and lens together. Mounted camera and "lens" on bracket with a cardboard tube to make a light-tight joint. Bracketed exposures of a windmill at sunrise.

It was unwieldy to say the least. Some of the shots turned out ok too. They had a 35mm-ish look. The assembled rig itself looked . . . formidable. A County Deputy drove up less than 10 min after I had set it up to see what was going on. He was very nice and left.

Sorry, no pix of any of it any more. I now have a sinar-six meter and probe, so may try this again.

Steven Tribe
4-Mar-2011, 13:32
Here is my first contribution!

Camera: Poco Cycle Long Focus model (8x10).
This is the traditional leatherette covered lightweight mahogany camera from the 1890's. The big difference from the standard types is that all the moving parts and rails are mahogany rather than brass.

Unlike everyone else's cycle self-casing camera, my leatherette is absolutely perfect - even the tiny tag which helps the lowering of the door is there! So no stripping down to the questionable mahogany for me.
Hovever, the complete back was missing along with the complete front standard. And the bellows had disappeared without trace. I decided to install a modern spring 8x10 spring back (used on other 8x10 cameras I have). Having decided to stop looking for replacement front standard of the traditional design, I adapted the distance between the two driving gears and the width of the front standard on a crown/speed graphic to fit the front. The side supports of the ex graphic standard were reversed to allow it to come up to the centre point of the 8x10 in both positions. The advantage of the graphic front standard is that it allows for much larger lenses than were possible on the original cycle poco standard.

Short description:

This modification is completed with a new tapering bellows. There is some increased weight but it is still a very handy travelling size. The adjustable back frame, which fits into the back, is made from suitable dimensioned walnut strips.
The bellows, although fitting well, are a little stiff (pressure on the front standard) and slightly too thick to allow easy locking of the drop door. So I will repeat the exercise with extra thin materials.


I have posted bellows photos before - but here are some of the front and back. I have included the ordinary cycle poco no.1 4x5" for size comparison. The astute observer will note that I still need the 4 clips to receive the pins on the back!

4-Mar-2011, 14:44
Cool thread, well done Ash!
About as far as I can go is to add a lens hood..........

4-Mar-2011, 20:56
Crown Graphic Special
Replaced black leather with faux red alligator

Burke & James 5x7
Rebuilt with assorted exotic woods

Leica K9
Added Red Dot to naked Kodak Funsaver disposable in post.. :-)

Frank Petronio
10-Mar-2011, 12:04

Lightened and made more flexible....

curtis roberts
11-Mar-2011, 15:55
my modificaton 0f a B&J 5X7/4X5

11-Mar-2011, 16:50
Wow, I'm impressed with some of the great mods here. Makes my mod kinda lame if you can call it a mod. I took a rubber plumbing fitting and made a filter holder. I cut the fitting down and press fit a 49-52mm step up ring in it.

Ramiro Elena
17-Mar-2011, 09:08
Not too big of a deal...

Eastman View No.2 8x10
Modified lens board to take Sinar Shutter.
I don't know how long this will hold, right now it seems pretty firm.
I glued two side rails to an old Eastman View board so the Sinar Shutter can slide in. Of course I need to mount my lenses on Sinar Boards although I have around 10 undrilled Eastman boards.



Kevin M Bourque
17-Mar-2011, 10:20
I posted this before so I'll just link to it...a "roof rack" for the Horseman 2x3.


17-Mar-2011, 11:01
Lightened and made more flexible....

Weighs the same. Lightening applied to camera interior only?

23-Mar-2011, 04:35
Contessa Nettel Deckrullo 13x18

Converted to 5x7

It must have been a donor body. Removed all the broken shutter and fitted a B&J back, and the 180mm Dagor from the Goerz Anschütz.