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Thread: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

  1. #1
    photobymike's Avatar
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    New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    I did my due diligence and research on how to install the ground glass in my Graflex Graflock back. There are many varied opinions how to do this. How about how and why?.... i do know the ground portion has to be on the same plane as the film.... but i do not have a micrometer to check .....

    so lets see how many ways there are here

    thanks in advance

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    C. D. Keth's Avatar
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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    It should be as simple as removing the old one and putting the new one, ground side toward the lens, in its place. If there were any shims under the glass, leave them in place.

    If there wasn't a groundglass there when you got it and you don't have precise measuring tools, you can install the new one and shoot a yardstick laid out on a table. Use a wide lens and shoot wide open, taking note of what mark on the ruler you focused on. When you inspect the negative, that should tell you if it's on or needs adjustment.
    -Chris

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    photobymike's Avatar
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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    mmm well i removed the old one by dropping.... lots of pieces .... yea will shot the yard stick, but there must be a way ground out or in.... a friend of mine say use a piece of 1mm plastic in front of the ground ... i would think this would be strange but his is like this.....

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    Jon Shiu's Avatar
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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    There is normally a fresnel under the ground glass, which moves the ground glass back some. So, if you have no fresnel, you would have to measure and shim your screen to match the film holders.

    Jon
    my black and white photos of the Mendocino Coast: www.jonshiu.com

  5. #5
    photobymike's Avatar
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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    yea thats what i thought ..oh crap i need to find a fresnel lens.....thanks jon

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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    Quote Originally Posted by photobymike View Post
    I did my due diligence and research on how to install the ground glass in my Graflex Graflock back. There are many varied opinions how to do this. How about how and why?.... i do know the ground portion has to be on the same plane as the film.... but i do not have a micrometer to check .....

    so lets see how many ways there are here

    thanks in advance
    If you are in a community of any size, there should be a tool rental shop that rents micrometers, particularly a depth gauge.

    You could do a work around. Take a piece of aluminum or steel plate that spans the 4 inch width of your film holder. Span the film holder opening. The take another piece of narrow place and set alongside the span plate and down against the film plane in the holder. Use a couple of small C-clamps to secure this. Another option is to drill two hole after clamping and rivetting the two plates together for a permanant tool.

    I normally do this with a piece of exposed film mounted in the holder. When the second plate is attached firmly to the first plate, you now have a depth gauge that can be used to:

    1) determine the exact placement of the ground side of your ground glass with regard to depth.

    And:

    2) check all your film holders for consistent same depth. Keep this for a check on new film holders acquired.

    Properly placing the ground glass surface in the camera is only half the battle if you get film holders that vary in depth. Your next out of focus image could be traced to an odd film holder, in which all your work to place the GG surface properly would be for naught. (I always wanted to create a sentence in which the term "for naught" would be appropriate.)

  7. #7

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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    Early Speed/Crown Graphics came without any Fresnel. If yours didn't have it then you just replace the GG without any shimming (rough side toward the lens).
    Wilhelm (Sarasota)

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    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Shiu View Post
    There is normally a fresnel under the ground glass, which moves the ground glass back some. So, if you have no fresnel, you would have to measure and shim your screen to match the film holders.

    Jon
    Unfortunately it's not always the case some (graflok as well) backs came with a fresnel and some without and the casting numbers are the same. So as others have said it's worth checking the register with the new screen fitted.

    Ian

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    Jon Shiu's Avatar
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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    Yes Ian is correct, do install your screen and check if it's in the correct place. It's easy and will take 5 minutes: first remove the graflok back and install the ground glass, frosted side towards lens. Then make a depth gauge from a pencil and a toothpick/matchstick, fastened on with a rubber band. Put the pencil across the back of the back and push the toothpick against the ground glass. Next, take a film holder and with the slide out, put the pencil across the width and see if the depth matches.
    *one of our esteemed members wrote how to do this in View Camera Magazine.

    Jon
    my black and white photos of the Mendocino Coast: www.jonshiu.com

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    Re: New ground glass for my Crown Graflex: how do i install

    I am thinking that if you dissassembled the old GG with gravity, it would have been pretty obvious if there was a piece of plastic left in the back of the camera. I expect younever had a fresnel to start with.

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