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Thread: 7x11 Camera Build

  1. #21

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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    Poly finish coat on the camera base, and on the front, rear, and keeper rails (three coats). This mahogany wood is so pretty I did not want to add any stain to it. It is a little lighter in color than vintage cameras I've used prior to this, but it's too pretty to risk messing it up with a darker stain. So, clear coat seemed the way to go.

    I routed out for the rail locks and for the front standard lock and drilled and epoxied in the tripod socket. I did this routing freehand, just placed the locks where I wanted them, traced around each one with a pencil, then tipped the router bit into the middle and tried to stay within my lines--a little nerve-wracking, but it seemed to work okay. This is my first real project using the hand held router so I'm relying on YouTube videos to figure out how to use it. Fortunately, the router has an LED light underneath and a clear plastic window to see through. After the first one, I thought to use blue painter's tape to cover all around the area I wanted to route; this helped a lot, as the pencil lines did not show very clearly.
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  2. #22

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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    I assembled and finish-coated the rear frame. I glued in ¼ x ¼” corner supports and a 1/8 x 1/8” light trap for the rear bellows frame. I've never seen a rear bellows frame light trap, but having replaced a few bellows, this seemed like a good idea. It will also help ensure the rear bellows frame stays even all around when I get to the point of drilling pilot holes to screw the bellows frame to the rear camera frame.

    The rear frame is 1/4 x 1 3/4 mahogany. Outside dimensions are 9 3/4 x 12 3/8.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_8720.JPG   IMG_8721.JPG   IMG_8722.JPG  

  3. #23
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    Go man Go!

  4. #24

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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    Ha, thanks Randy. Man, I’ve been envisioning building this camera for two years; it’s great to finally be getting to work on it.

  5. #25

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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    Finish coated the gg frame and spring back and touched up more of the flat-black paint.

    Because each of these pieces is composed of several layers of 1/8 basswood, I ran each piece through the table saw to square up the edges. I then used an Xacto knife and metal ruler as a guide to cut strips from a stock piece of 1/32 x 3 x 24” mahogany veneer to cover the faces of the ground glass frame and the top and bottoms of the spring back. I applied these with contact cement. Then three coats of clear gloss polyurethane varnish, with light sanding between each coat.

    The inside exposed ¼ of the gg frame is darker because it is the exposed red mahogany stained basswood. The frosted ground glass will rest on this (when installed) so it will not be visible when the camera is fully assembled.

    The exposed cherry wood on the face of the spring back will mostly be covered by the brass springs when the hardware is added, so I don't think it will distract too much from the overall use of mahogany.

    The colors of the gg frame and spring back look very different in these pics, but that is just the difference in lighting; they don't really look this different when viewed side by side in the same light.

    Notice the film holder surround spring back (1/2" deep) goes right to the edge--this is by design to minimize the external dimensions of the camera and because this is intended as a landscape, horizontal design instead of a reversible back camera as we more commonly see view cameras. This is one of the more obvious design modifications I am making compared to the Rochester King model. However, with a 1/2" thick top and bottom to the spring back (instead of the 1/4 inch of the King cameras), this is going to present a slight challenge for pin placement and holding clip shape and length when I get to the point of fashioning the hardware.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_8723.JPG   IMG_8725.JPG  

  6. #26

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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    All three major pieces together for the first time: camera base, rear frame, spring back and gg frame. No hardware added yet. External measures are 9 ¾ x 12 3/8 x 3 ¼”.

    Each piece seems to line up well with the others. The spring back is about 1/16 too long from top to bottom. Apparently I only needed to add one strip of mahogany veneer instead of one each to the top and bottom, so I'll need to adjust for that when I add hardware. But the base and rear frame line up well and the inside light trap of the spring back lines up well with the rear frame as does the gg frame and the film holder area.

    I placed these parts on my digital kitchen scale, and piled the front standard pieces, the rear brackets, bellows and bellows frames, and acrylic gg on top and the weight came to three and one-half pounds. I am hoping all the hardware won't add much more than another pound. Have to wait and see though since I have not yet started on the metal work.

    I'm off to Atlanta to visit dear old dad, so will get back to work on this build in a week or so. So far, so good.

    Thanks for viewing. Comments or questions are welcome.
    Cheers,
    Michael

    ps: I also want to give a shout out to a couple of forum members--Jim Fitzgerald and Pali K--whose earlier posts provided me with inspiration and design ideas for this build, as well as RH (Dick) Phillips. I really appreciate these guys for posting images of their camera creations and sharing their knowledge with the LF community. Thank you so much!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_8727.JPG   IMG_8728.JPG   IMG_8729.JPG   IMG_8730.JPG  
    Last edited by Michael Roberts; 27-Apr-2019 at 05:57.

  7. #27
    Ron (Netherlands)'s Avatar
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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    Nice, very nice indeed. Since it is quite a big camera with large pieces of wood used - did you consider to join the parts for the frames with finger joint or - like they did in the old days - dove tails?
    Same kind of question for the drop bed - to overcome warping in carpentry one use breadboard ends to keep things flat as well as cover end grain.
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  8. #28
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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    To compare to Michael Roberts very nice DIY, I just weighed my Eastman No2 which has the larger body with both 7X11 and 8X10 backs.

    Camera with one back weighs 13 lbs with one sliding lensboard, but without a lens or extension.

    However the monster OE carrying case, with camera, both backs, extension, 4 lens boards, 5 wood 7X11, 5 wood 8X10 film holders is 37 lbs. No glass. And room for one lens...

    No wonder they started using cars!

  9. #29

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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron (Netherlands) View Post
    Nice, very nice indeed. Since it is quite a big camera with large pieces of wood used - did you consider to join the parts for the frames with finger joint or - like they did in the old days - dove tails?
    Same kind of question for the drop bed - to overcome warping in carpentry one use breadboard ends to keep things flat as well as cover end grain.
    Ron, thanks for your questions. I’m not a wood working pro (obviously), but I did some research on joinery techniques before starting this build. Based on my research, I concluded modern wood glues make a lot of fancy joinery methods unnecessary for functional, in contrast to esthetic, purposes. Others, with more experience, may disagree.

    For the base panel, the long, same grain joints should be fine with just wood glue—no need for biscuit joints. The sides of the base are glued to the butt ends of the panel pieces—no dove tails, as you noted. Again, my research indicated the glue would be sufficient. I thought for a long time that I might need to put brass screws into these side pieces—and I may yet—but for now I am trusting the glue. I think it’s also important that the base sides are not high stress joints—they are not carrying any weight, they are just guides for the rear rails, and they fill in the gap when the camera is closed and provide some cross grain stability to prevent warping of the base panel. These side pieces function similarly to the bread board ends you mention (but w/o dovetails).

    The wood glue forms a very good bond. After gluing one of the rear rails together—1/4 thick mahogany and 1/4 basswood—I discovered the mahogany was 1/16 too wide, and I wanted to chisel the two pieces apart to trim the mahogany to 1”. I couldn’t do it. Tried three different spots. So I decided the glue lives up to its advertising.

    The rear frame corner joints are another matter. This is a joint where you often see finger joints. In fact, in examining both my King cameras and my Kodak 2D, both have finger joints on the corners of the rear frames. However, given the strength of the modern glue, I decided to use a butt joint and to add strength by gluing in 1/4 corner supports on the inside of each corner. Again, I thought long and hard about using brass screws on the outside of these corners, and I may yet. The rear frame is also supported, or will be, by the rear bellows frame once it is screwed in. I also considered the only time the rear frame is weight-bearing is when it will be carried by the handle I intend to install on top; it won’t have to bear any weight while in use.

    More support for the rear frame corners is something I am also thinking about for the hardware design—some cameras, like the 2D, have wrap around corner hardware while others, like the King, do not.
    Last edited by Michael Roberts; 11-May-2019 at 02:16.

  10. #30

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    Re: 7x11 Modified Rochester Optical Design and Build

    I ordered the 7x11 bellows a couple of years ago and it has just been waiting patiently for me to get going on this project. On getting the bellows out to attach to the rear and front frames, I realized I must have screwed up the measurement—the front opening is too large for my 4 ¼ lens board frame (i.e., 5 ¼ external height-width). I managed to glue the bellows on to the front frame (glued behind the visible mahogany lens board frame) and folded the excess bellows material in from the sides to prevent interference with front forward and back tilt (I hope).

    In addition, the bellows is much thicker when folded than I was counting on; it is a full two inches thick (the consequence of ordering a 32-33” bellows). It is not going to fit within the 1 ¾ “ depth of the rear frame. I allowed ¼” for the spring back light trap and another ¼” for the width of the rear bellows frame. This only leaves 1 ¼” for the bellows and front frame and front standard—not enough room.

    Need to think about options….
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_8735.JPG  

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