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Thread: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

  1. #11

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    [QUOTE=Ig Nacio;1482006]
    I may start with just one lens, either a 135 mm or
    another lens with focal lens between 180 and 240 mm.

    A couple of thoughts about lenses--if you're looking for a 135mm for a Horseman, the classic choice seems to be the Apo-Sironar N 135mm F5.6, since it can be left mounted when the camera is folded-up. (It's also a great, tiny, lens--though using filters with it can be a pain.)

    Another thing to note is that a head-and-shoulders portrait with a longer lens might cause you to run out of bellows--for that reason, a telephoto lens (I've got a Schneider 270/5.5 Tele Arton) might be a better option. I would probably make a very specific query here at LF to see if any Horseman owners can give you feedback before I bought a lens on the long end.

  2. #12

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Queensland, Australia

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    I have the Horseman 45-FA, very solid camera, my favourite landscape lens was the Horseman LF 210mm, good quality lens at a decent price. I also used the nikkon 90mm f8, but swing , tilt and rise were tight, but doable. The screen is nice and bright too. A bit fiddly with rear tilt as the rear extension uses four small posts which slide out for swing and tilt adjustment. Limited on lens choice, but I only ever needed those two lenses.

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Nara, Japan

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    Here is a list of lenses that will and will not work with the Horseman 4x5 field cameras.


  4. #14

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Queensland, Australia

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    Great reference material Kumar, thankyou

  5. #15
    ic-racer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    What accesories with the Horseman are hard to come by?
    As an example, the optical finder (I'm still looking), the extension back and the correct Topcor 90mm f5.6 lens that fits in the front standard hole
    The zoom finder is of special note as I can't say I have ever seen one for sale. Maybe it was a Japanese market only item.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by ic-racer; 5-Feb-2019 at 14:40.

  6. #16

    Join Date
    May 2011

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF


    Thank you for your messages : ) !!!

    Yes, I think I would start by that 135 mm.
    focal length. To use a lens like the 270 mm.
    that you mention an extension may be
    needed, isn't?

    Yes, as CreationBear and other members
    mention, with this camera not all lenses
    will do. I wonder who manufactured for
    Horseman the large format lenses?

    Thank you for your compliment and recommendation to
    do business with B.S. Kummar. I was able to read it
    before it was erased, but I had not had a chance to
    repply to you guys earlier.

    @B.S. Kumar
    Thank you for your message. I'll be sending you an
    e-mail very soon!

    @B.S. Kumar
    Thank you for the lens list!
    I found interesting that some of these lenses are as
    luminous as f/4

    Yes, I see what you mean! I imagine, for example,
    that the extension back allows for the use of any
    long lens. It is not so enjoyable if one does not find
    one. It is not fun if one is looking for an accesory
    and it may not be available.

    Thank you again for your messages : ) !!!

    Kind regards,


  7. #17

    Join Date
    Jan 2013

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    I use a Horseman FA, and like it very much. I have several lenses, from a 75mm Fuji to a 300mm Fuji T (telephoto). Those both work fine, but I usually have to drop the bed with the 75. My standard lens is a Rodenstock 135 APO Sironar-N, which will actually fit inside the case when the camera folds up; most lenses won’t fit. I also have a Rodenstock 210mm MC, which works fine on the FA and makes lovely images. Yes, the lens selection is limited due to size, but the FA is one classy, compact 4x5, in my opinion.

  8. #18

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    The little 45FA is real neat if you need compactness and simplicity. The camera also has useful accessories like the quick fit hood and screen to help speed set up. And as stated above, it’s a classy little metal camera. It’s limitations don’t suit everyone, but it makes a lightweight package to lug around. A little wooden Wista 45 isn’t much bigger but has more flexibility, movements, bellows, lens boards. But that usually results in you heaving more lenses around. When I could, I liked taking the 45FA, or a Speedgraphic, for the compactness.

  9. #19
    Tin Can's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    B&H is a good source for Horseman data and pics.

    They maintain a deep repository of out of production gear data, you need to search for it outside their current sales website.

    I have a lot of what is on this page.

    Oren Grad also knows a lot about Horseman.

  10. #20
    Jim Jones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Chillicothe Missouri USA

    Re: Horseman 45FA / Horseman 45HF

    Quote Originally Posted by Ig Nacio View Post
    . . . I have seen beautiful pictures of LF 4x5
    portraits. . . .
    Most of those beautiful portraits could have been taken by the same photographer with the same lens and film with almost any of the cameras mentioned above. More important than brand or appearance are accommodating all the lenses that one expects to use, stability, weight, cost, type of lens board, and convenience of controls. A photographer's first view camera may be more valuable as a learning tool than as a lifetime investment. Many of us have eventually owned a variety of view cameras over many years. Perhaps most important than the camera is the right choice of lens. Some 135mm lenses were designed for good performance on press cameras, and have inadequate coverage for full versatility on a view camera. Other lenses have poor bokeh for portraits captured with shallow depth-of-field. Kumar's list in post #13 of newer lenses that may not be suitable is a valuable resource, but cannot include the endless number of older lenses. Older lenses may also be unusable with electronic flash. Many lenses are too large to permit a camera to close with the lens mounted, sometimes a nuisance. A back that accommodates both portrait and landscape format on a view camera is valuable. A universal back such as the Graflok is sometimes useful. Buying a suitable combination of camera and lens is often less expensive than buying both separately.

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