View Full Version : Rise/Fall not moving on a Folmer & Schwing camera

10-Apr-2011, 16:48
I'm installing the new bellows on this old 12x20 and I find that the rise/fall is stuck. Yes, I loosened the screw. I even tapped the front from the bottom in an upward direction with a rubber mallet. No luck. Can anyone recommend how to get this moving again without any/much damage to the wood?
If this function design is similar across other formats, I'd be curious to hear how you resolved it, even if not in this camera size.


John Schneider
10-Apr-2011, 16:51
Did you try moving the screw axially? On the old 7x11 EK cameras, rise/fall only worked if the axle was pushed one way. When it was pushed the other, it acted as a lock. Maybe the same on your F&S?

10-Apr-2011, 18:10
The Ansco design is similar to what you're talking about.
I don't have that option in this design. I removed screw and adjusting plate and tapped some more from top and from bottom.
No luck.

Joe Forks
10-Apr-2011, 19:55
Mine is very tight but it does move within that groove. Check to see if any repairs had been made in that area, it's possible some glue spilled over or seeped into the groove, maybe??

How hard did you tap it with the mallet?

10-Apr-2011, 20:14
How hard did you tap it with the mallet?

No obvious clues of repair work on the front standard. I was hitting it hard enough that something should have moved, but not so hard as to damage the wood.
It's frustrating. I was hoping to have a bellows on today and shooting paper negatives tomorrow night. I'm hesitant to connect the front standard to the rear bellows until I know it's good. I don't want to have to take it apart again.

11-Apr-2011, 05:05
Try a Block of wood and a bigger hammer.
The wood may have swelled, shrank or the finish adhered it self together.

William Whitaker
11-Apr-2011, 06:06

If the camera is in a damp environment, e.g. garage, basement, move it to a dry room, possibly with a dehumidifier going for a few days to see if that helps to alleviate the problem. Also make sure that it hasn't been pinned in position by a previous owner. All it would take would be a small nail from behind, maybe hidden by the secondary bellows, to lock it up. In a hundred years a lot can happen to a camera.

Does it look something like this one?


11-Apr-2011, 06:49
Your brass looks to be in better shape. Other than that, it's identical. Nothing appears to be pinned. I have checked that. The bellows were replaced yesterday. I think it's safe to assume swelling (my best guess) or as mentioned previously, wood finish has stuck the two together.

Joe Forks
11-Apr-2011, 09:48
Is that a home made tripod mounting block? Looks like it is, and looks like a good idea. Any design tips that go along with it?

William Whitaker
11-Apr-2011, 18:39

Yes it is. And it provides much more support to the camera than just the tripod head alone (even a Ries). The details are here (http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showpost.php?p=667376&postcount=24).

11-Apr-2011, 18:59
You might also check for dirt between the wood parts; swelling was my first thought, and if it is swelling, when it dries you should be able to move it. Once you can move it, make sure the grooves are clean - if it's in as good a shape as Will's photo, it's probably not dirt.

Joe Forks
14-Apr-2011, 05:28
Thanks Will!

18-Apr-2011, 18:30
Thanks for suggesting the dehumidifier. After a few days of solitary confinement in a storage room and a commercial dehumidifer, it's moving again. We blew some compressed air in the grooves and it seems to be moving smoothly again. Moving forward with bellows replacement!

p.s. the fresnel fits nicely!