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Thread: Urgent lens understandings needed

  1. #1
    45-57-617
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    Urgent lens understandings needed

    Hi all,

    I have a lens that has been cleaned of fungus and is sitting in pieces at S K Grimes (I wasn't sure if the lens would clean up). My intention was to get it remounted into a Copal #3 shutter which is also 'on the bench' at S K Grimes. I went looking for advice about the lens and got a bunch of negative opinions on it. I have to make a decision whether to go ahead with the re-mounting or have it re-assembled as clean and maybe use it without shutter.

    The lens is the APO Nikkor Process lens of 480mm variety.

    I was hoping the lens would be a sharp lens for landscapes and architecturally attractive sections of houses in particular. I use 4x5 and 5x7.

    Should I proceed to re-mount the lens ? Advice gained from actual experience would be most appreciated as the costs are significant.

  2. #2
    loujon
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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    Only IF your planning on owning the lens for a lifetime because if your lucky you may be able to sell it at 1/4 of the cost of Adam or the others at SK Grimes do this work. I only would consider having them mount "truly rare" optic but not any APO Nikkor under 600mm.

    It would cost no more to buy a Nikkor 450M f9 in a factory mounted Copal 3 shutter and you'll likely be able to get at the least what you paid for it back in your wallet when your ready or wanting to move on with the lens.

  3. #3
    45-57-617
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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    So Louis what you're saying is the lens will deliver the same performance as the 450M f9 but may not have the same re-sale value...

    I did see one for sale at $1600 US at one point ... (I don't know whether it sold)

  4. #4

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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    APO nikkors are pretty sharp lenses also for distant subjects.

    This is a 7.44 x 5.58mm crop of the image circle of an appo nikkor:


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentax_Q-S1)

    So it shows in a monitor like if it was a crop of a 12m print from a 8x10" negative (12m !!!!), You can calculate for your monitor, but it can be x50 (or more) from the 5.56mm crop height.

    https://www.largeformatphotography.i...=1#post1440564

    Coating a Bokeh of the APO nikkor may like you or not, regarding resolving power, no problem.

  5. #5

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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    Have had maybe a half dozen lenses barrel lenses mounted in shutters (usually an Ilex No. 5). After having them mount one classic brass lens into a shutter, discovered afterwards that the optic was a dog. Based on that costly experience, from then on always shot some test negatives (usually at full aperture, stopped down half way, and fully stopped down) before sending them a lens to be mounted in a shutter. In a couple of instances, shooting 3 11x14" negatives seemed like a costly thing to do, but it only reflected a mere fraction of the final total cost in the end. Agree with Louis Pacilla that going the route of buying a Nikkor 450mm f/9 in a factory mounted Copal 3 shutter is a better way to go. The only reason I went the route of having my lenses mounted in shutters was that none of them were ever originally available mounted in shutters. One lens I was after for years was a 12" Wollensak Velostigmat. Many times saw it offered in a barrel mount for very reasonable prices. Finally found one mounted in a (factory) Betax No. 5 for a little more than I wanted to pay, but if I had gone the route of getting a barrel Wollensak Velostigmat, a No. 5 shutter, and had them mated, my total cost in the end would have been probably double what I paid for the one already mounted in a Betax.

  6. #6

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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    Have you ever used a lens of that focal length for landscapes or architecture shots on a 4x5? I'm not saying anything negative about the lens per se, but I think the focal length will be of limited use for your stated purpose, so you may want to consider how much you are willing to spend to make it usable.

  7. #7
    Serious Amateur Photographer pepeguitarra's Avatar
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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    This is how the Nikkor-M 450/9 looks on my Chamonix 4x5:

    CHAMONIX 45f2 + Nikkor-M 450/9 by Palenquero Photography, on Flickr
    "I have never in my life made music for money or fame. God walks out of the room when you are thinking about money." -- Quincy Jones

  8. #8
    loujon
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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    Quote Originally Posted by swmcl View Post
    So Louis what you're saying is the lens will deliver the same performance as the 450M f9 but may not have the same re-sale value...

    I did see one for sale at $1600 US at one point ... (I don't know whether it sold)
    At 1600 USD for a Nikkor 450M is on the high side and is probably accounting for the large image circle & if your not shooting this on a 16x20 it's bit over priced IMHO.

    So apples to apples I would look for factory mounted 19" RD Artars or 19" APO Ronars as they will have PLENTY of IC for 10x8 maybe 14x11. More about my reasoning below.



    Quote Originally Posted by Pere Casals View Post
    APO nikkors are pretty sharp lenses also for distant subjects.

    This is a 7.44 x 5.58mm crop of the image circle of an appo nikkor:


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentax_Q-S1)

    So it shows in a monitor like if it was a crop of a 12m print from a 8x10" negative (12m !!!!), You can calculate for your monitor, but it can be x50 (or more) from the 5.56mm crop height.

    https://www.largeformatphotography.i...=1#post1440564

    Coating a Bokeh of the APO nikkor may like you or not, regarding resolving power, no problem.
    Don't get me wrong,,,, I'm not saying that the APO Nikkor Process lenses are not terrific, they are. However a 19" process like a 450/480 RD Artar or APO Ronar factory mounted in Copal shutters can be found for around or under 500-600 USD. So is all of this costing around 500-600USD?

    AGAIN if it was TRULY unique and TRULY uncommon optics then I would green light the project but the RD Artars & APO Ronars are equal to the task of the APO Nikkor. So IMO a needless expense & your better off buying film/chemistry or other gear you need or simply save the cash.

    Like I said "I" would NOT make the investment of paying to have SK Grimes mount ANY APO Nikkor process lens at or UNDER the focal length of 600mm 24" because there are plenty of factory mounted process lenses out there to be had & for at the least 1/2 of what I imagine the cost of custom mounting cost. This is just me and I have no troubles with those who do not agree.
    Last edited by Louis Pacilla; 13-Feb-2019 at 16:38. Reason: edit/add

  9. #9

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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    I don't understand the OP's obsession with sharpness for landscape photography. In what a Nikkor 450 M lens is inferior in landscape photography to a super sharp lens?
    And +1 to n. 6 comment.

  10. #10

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    Re: Urgent lens understandings needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Louis Pacilla View Post
    Like I said "I" would NOT make the investment of paying to have SK Grimes mount ANY APO Nikkor process lens at or UNDER the focal length of 600mm 24" because there are plenty of factory mounted process lenses out there to be had & for at the least 1/2 of what I imagine the cost of custom mounting cost. This is just me and I have no troubles with those who do not agree.
    Let me point that I only say that APO Nikkors are very sharp for distant subjects. If it's worth or not mounting a shutter... I'm not saying an opinion, IMHO this is 'à chacun son goût'.

    Me, I use a LOMO O-2 600mm with Jim Galli's shutter. Beyond it is $50 (Jim says), it never requires a CLA !!!

    Quote Originally Posted by djdister View Post
    Have you ever used a lens of that focal length for landscapes or architecture shots on a 4x5? I'm not saying anything negative about the lens per se, but I think the focal length will be of limited use for your stated purpose, so you may want to consider how much you are willing to spend to make it usable.
    Why ?

    Ansel Adams shot "Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico" with 580 mm focal in 8x10". If OP uses 480mm for 5x7 this is not that far...

    Of course one has to be aware that it is a long focal for the format, and wanting that, but I see no "limitation". There are entire books made with LF and long focals, I've one by Reinhart Wolf.

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