View Full Version : Where to find a 4x4 lens board for a

2-Jan-2004, 12:48
Hi again, I just picked up a Rochester Optiacal 8x10 called a Carlton. It has a 4x4 lens board holder in it. I've checked links and google searches but must not have the right key words to find a lens board for this one. If anyone has a source for wood lens boards that they can pass on I would appreciate it. This Carlton btw looks and functions almost identical to a Deardorff. Does anyone have any background on this camera. I will have to replace one of the drive gears but otherwise it looks and functions pretty nicely. Thanks again for all the great help.

ps: took my 1st 2 chromes with my 2D on new years day. I'm back into LF again. Hurah..

Doug Theall Montgomery, Alabama

2-Jan-2004, 13:02
If it uses common 4"x4" boards then they are well pretty common. Calumet still sells them new for the old Calumet 400 cameras. The older graflexes used them also [older press cameras and the view cameras] for that matter the B&J press camera used them to. Likely others did to. I don't know if those are the ones you're looking for but if it is then they shouldn't be too hard to find.

Ernest Purdum
2-Jan-2004, 15:06
"Carlton" cameras were made for about ten years before Eastman bought out Rochester in 1903. They were amongst the most attractive products of the Rochester companies. The name is that of the owner of the company, W.F Carlton.

I'm afraid an original lensboard could only be found by a great fluke. Further, you could go through an awful lot of other lensboards trying to find one that might fit. Fortunately, they are quite easy for a woodworker to make. If you are not concerned about matching the original finish, model airplane shops carry small sheets of a multi-layer plywood that makes excellent lensboards. The sheets come in different thicknesses that can be laminated up to your needs. If finish is a consideration, www.micromark.com sells mahogany sheets in thicknesses from 1/32" to 1/4". They also sell the plywood if you don't have a local source. The plywood is birch and the thicknesses range from 1/64"! to 1/4".

Leonard Robertson
2-Jan-2004, 15:20
Here is a page on Carlton: http://www.fiberq.com/cam/roc/carlton.htm

tim atherton
2-Jan-2004, 15:33
I love how it came in eight formats between 4x5 and 11x14.... :-)

2-Jan-2004, 18:49
Great stuff guys. The picture was really close but mine has some refinements not pictured. The lens board looks to be a bit of a problem but I will work something out. I'll take measurements and see if I can get some nice cabinet grade mahogany plywood and take it down to a local millwright and see what I can get. The 4x4 size is a problem on longer lens though. The 360mm I'm looking at takes a 3 1/4" hole. That doesn't leave much for a flange on a 4x4. I'm temped to not bother with the 4x4 and just use a full size insert and use that as the lens board. I think the 4x4 was an attempt to standardize for what was common at the time..... Any ideas from the rest of the gang...

Thanks again, Doug

Leonard Robertson
2-Jan-2004, 21:30
Doug - If your flange is too large for your lensboard, you can make an "extension" lensboard. A 4X4 board to fit the camera with a slightly smaller board (maybe 3 3/4" square, it needs to fit inside the top and bottom lensboard holders) glued to the front of it. Then glued to the front of that, a larger than 4X4 board (whatever you need to take your flange). I made something like this once to fit a 5X7 Cycle Graphic and it worked. If you are using a heavy lens on an old camera, this will add leverage to the lens weight, so be careful it doesn't pull the screws out of the top lensboard holding rail. Another idea - if your flange is just a little large for your board, you can mill the top and bottom sides of the flange off enough to clear the lensboard holding rails on the camera. I've seen several old flanges that are no longer round, but have been whacked off at some time. One drawback to many really old view cameras is a fairly small lensboard.

Ralph Barker
3-Jan-2004, 09:40
"The 360mm I'm looking at takes a 3 1/4" hole. That doesn't leave much for a flange on a 4x4."

I had a similar problem when making an adapter board for my Tachihara 8x10, Doug. I wanted to standardize on 110mm metal Toyo boards, so I could easily move the lenses between the Tachihara and the Toyos I have. The Tachihara uses a 149mm board with a stepped back as a light baffle. To strengthen the adapter board, made from 3/16" mahogany, I laminated strips of 1/8"x1/2" aluminum bar to the back side of the adapter board. The stepped back was done on a shaper table, and the internal step on the face of the adapter for the Toyo board was done with a router.


james mickelson
3-Jan-2004, 12:07
On ebay!!!