View Full Version : DIY Camera Questions

eric black
3-Jan-2012, 11:30
A qquestion for you camera refinishers and builders-question one relateds to bellows attachment and question 2 is for finish suggestions.

First the background- Im in the process of making an 8x10 conversion set for my ARCA F-line which will have a mahogany box-type backsandwiched in between a Cambo 8x10 metal, bail back and a Sinar P2 bellows purchased from the ecbuysonline ebay source. I have experience adhering bellows to front frames and will be doing so with an extra 171mm ARCA frame I have.

And now the questions-
#1- How exactly to adhere the back of the bellows to the mahogany frame- ie do I need to do anything more than contact cement between the bellows and a mahogany surface sanded smooth and prepared with sanding sealer (or not?). I see some web content that talks to using a metal back frame which I would like to avoid if possible based on weight saving and not having to cut metal which I am ill equipped to do. I dont need a removeable style bellows and am just looking for a method to permanently adhere it into place- any suggestions based on personal experiences are welcome.

#2- anyone with a better method of finishing the exterior of the mahogany (Im simply thinking sanding sealer and then polyurethane with sanding between coats)?

3-Jan-2012, 12:07
I've just glued it down

probably with auto cement of some kind I picked up at the car parts place I seem to spend all my time at

if it has an internal back frame..it makes it easier

3-Jan-2012, 12:07
I use Carquest black adhesive silicone to glue on my bellows its makes it lightproof
at the same time

I dont like polyurethane as I live in the high desert it dry out and not much good here
shellac or a oil

3-Jan-2012, 12:12
I've done the conversion you mention- pretty much the same strategy.
You can find some pictures of the bellows frame towards the bottom of this first page-

I used aluminum strips, one for each side of the bellows, screwed through- I never really considered gluing, it always seemed a bit too permanent. if I were to do it again, I'd consider using the same forms, but substituting carbon fiber for the aluminum.

I oiled mine, then beeswax- but I haven't reapplied any finishes since I made it- I haven't really needed to, and it still looks pretty similar to the pictures-

Steve Smith
3-Jan-2012, 14:41
I have seen bellows just clamped in place with bulldog clips!