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Thread: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

  1. #1

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    Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    A 4x5 Burke & James Orbit Monorail View Camera With 360 Rotating Back is available on the UK eBay site.

    Visually it seems identical to my Calumet CC401.

    What (if any) is or was the relationship between the two companies.

    I understand there is no official outlet for Calumet spares - does the same apply for Burke & James spares?

    regards

    Tony

  2. #2
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    Burke & James were a US company sourcing products from around the world inc the US, they were the distributors of Thornton Pickard shutters etc for a few years sold under their own name.

    Later Calumet bought Cambo and they still exist, in fact I had contact with their (Camb0) Marketing manager a few days ago via social networking (he contacted me). Calumet in the US ceased trading, then restructured much smaller, the European side wasn't involved and remained healthy.

    There's an old man (an ambiguous Unisex first name) who posts here occasionally who was involved with B&J after WWII. There's a link between B&J and then Calumet

    Ian

  3. #3

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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    IanG, I always thought B&J manufactured as well as distributed, could what tonyowen saw was manufactured by B&J and branded as Calumet or vice versa ?
    Much like the Cambo SC series, they are/were available branded as Calumet.

  4. #4

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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    That particular camera started as a Kodak. The B&J was a bootleg copy and I believe the Calumet version was made with tooling purchased from Kodak.

    It's all in the archives here somewhere.
    Thanks, but I'd rather just watch:
    Large format: http://flickr.com/michaeldarnton
    Mostly 35mm: http://flickr.com/mdarnton
    You want digital, color, etc?: http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradofear

  5. #5
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    No NOS parts anywhere.

    Most of us upgrade our boxes with bits wherever we find them.

    Lynn Jones...
    sin eater

  6. #6

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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    Quote Originally Posted by IanG View Post
    Burke & James were a US company sourcing products from around the world inc the US, they were the distributors of Thornton Pickard shutters etc for a few years sold under their own name.

    Later Calumet bought Cambo and they still exist, in fact I had contact with their (Camb0) Marketing manager a few days ago via social networking (he contacted me). Calumet in the US ceased trading, then restructured much smaller, the European side wasn't involved and remained healthy.

    There's an old man (an ambiguous Unisex first name) who posts here occasionally who was involved with B&J after WWII. There's a link between B&J and then Calumet

    Ian
    Ian, calumet US was liquidated. At the bankruptcy auction the assets were bought by a New Jersey company named C & A Marketing. They also bought at bankruptcy the Ritz, Wolf and the other assets of that group as well as Penn Camera. C&A has reopened some of the previous stores but does most of their business on the internet under various names (they also own the rights to use the Polaroid name in the photo industry).

    The last Calumet group, prior to the bankruptcy, in the USA tried to reopen in Chicago after they lost at the auction, across the street from their old, main store in Chicago. However that venture was unsuccessful.

  7. #7

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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    My reading showed that this camera started as Kodak product. (Kodak Masterview?) Sometime in the 1950's, the tooling and dies were sold to Burke & James, who produced it as the "Orbit". Then sometime in the 1960's the tooling and dies and blueprints got sold to Calumet who sold them as their 400 series 4 by 5 view cameras.

  8. #8
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    Quote Originally Posted by MrFujicaman View Post
    My reading showed that this camera started as Kodak product. (Kodak Masterview?) Sometime in the 1950's, the tooling and dies were sold to Burke & James, who produced it as the "Orbit".
    I have the Orbit, and used it just a few days ago. It is the most reliable 8x10 I have, but it gets heavier every year - some kind of physics anomaly.

  9. #9

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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    Thanks, but I'd rather just watch:
    Large format: http://flickr.com/michaeldarnton
    Mostly 35mm: http://flickr.com/mdarnton
    You want digital, color, etc?: http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradofear

  10. #10

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    Re: Burke & James aka Calumet?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Moe View Post
    Lynn Jones...
    Randy
    Don't understand this reference(??)
    I'm quite happy to acknowledge my ignorance - but it might be important to my quest - please elucidate
    regards
    Tony

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