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Thread: Used gear and availability

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    Posts
    15

    Used gear and availability

    Hello everyone,
    Iīd like to have your opinion about the following topic.
    I have the feeling that on the second hand market there is very low availability of large format cameras? In particular recent models from Arca Swiss and Linhof. I donīt expect to find the same availability than consumer digital cameras, of course.
    But I am really struggling to find second hand Arca (F-Line, Metric) and Linhof (Technikardan or RE). It seems the whole web has only 1-2 offers (on eBay, Kamerastore and specialized forums).
    Whatīs your opinion? And what about the resell value of such cameras? Can you suggest some good sources where to buy used gear? I am really struggling.
    Thank you all.
    Last edited by simdil; 28-May-2020 at 21:21.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Buford, GA
    Posts
    13,144

    Re: Used gear and availability

    You will never find a TechniKardan RE. There is only the original TK and the current TK S.
    Maybe you are looking for a Kardan RE, a completely different camera.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bend, OR
    Posts
    368

    Re: Used gear and availability

    The used market is certainly a patience game- I have items I have done searches for daily for over a year and they still have not appeared or if so have sold for more than I was willing to pay. I do searches on Arca-Swiss cameras everyday. I already have the camera, just would like a newer version of the rail clamp than the one I currently have. I can tell you that I seem to see at least 1-2 cameras a month come up for auction- just last week an f-line compact 4x5 sold with accessories for what I considered to be a price that was on the low end of what I thought it was worth. Great thing about Arcas is you could just buy two cameras, pull them apart and sort through the pieces with the features you like and build one camera for yourself and sell the undesired parts as a second camera. I guess the other option would be to save a little more and order exactly what you want since they still make and sell them (sadly not the case with many of the lenses we all would like to buy and use). good luck- they are really nice cameras.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Collinsville, CT USA
    Posts
    1,518

    Re: Used gear and availability

    Patience, patience, patience...
    Took me several years to find a NOBLEX PRO 6/150UX with slow exposure module in mint condition
    Mottweiler P.90/2 Stenope pinhole camera: never found one in used condition. Fortunately Kurt decided to make some more of them.
    Working S.E.I Photometer: Gave up after years of looking for one. Bought up more than a half dozen broken ones and next project is to see if I can put together a working one.
    Keep checking with KEH, Igor's Camera Exchange, and alike on a daily basis. Acquired one lens within hours of it being newly listed FS.

  5. #5
    Tin Can's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    13,956

    Re: Used gear and availability

    I watch a lot of gear on eNay

    I also set searches

    When it shows up be ready, but don't buy if....

    My Snipe guy is failing, he was great for years

    you want the best, you will pay
    sin eater

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    567

    Re: Used gear and availability

    There is a great deal of Toyo equipment, cameras and accessories on the used market, most of it is very good quality and reasonably priced. Mr. Sakai realized early on the benefits of a thin bellows material and made the transition from lined leather to a single coated fabric layer when the G series and F series were introduced. I have a early Toyo field camera which takes Pacemaker Graphic lens boards and has a leather bellows. The bellows is still supple and completely light tight.

    Unfortunately almost every Toyo single layer fabric coated bellows, including "new old stock" have deteriorated and developed pin holes in the corners of the folds. Large format photography is challenging and costly enough for beginners without having to encounter the problems pin holes produce. I had a great deal of experience with other large format cameras which had no pin hole problems before I transitioned from Deardorff 8x10 to the Toyo 8X10M, which I still use. Even then, the pin holes caught me by surprise and I lost a lot of good negatives while trying to track down the problem. At first I thought it was film holder related, and only when I pulled the bellows out tight against the bright sun did I see the pin holes. On the 810M and the 45C I was using at the time, and in which I also discovered pin holes, I replaced the bellows with "lifetime" products from the now closed Western Bellows Co. That was close to twenty years ago and both those bellows are still like new. Over the past few years I rebuilt many Toyo cameras for resale with bellows from well-known eBay seller Rudy. They are excellent but thicker than the single layer Toyo originals, like the Western bellows, and require reworking of the plastic frames to fit.

    Three years ago, I discovered Nabel, originally a Japanese camera bellows company, and Dynatect which both make products to the same specification. Two layers of thin but rugged synthetic fabric on a skeleton of synthetic stiffeners, no cardboard at all and these bellows are completely waterproof. Thin like Toyo originals, they fit right on the frames without difficulty. A standard bellows for 4X5 is now $282, but well-worth it in my opinion. I just put one on a Robos.

  7. #7
    Foamer
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    South Dakota
    Posts
    2,029

    Re: Used gear and availability

    My strategy has been to buy something that will work for me, then slowly upgrade as the opportunity presents. I mostly follow ebay, classifieds here, and FB groups.


    Kent in SD
    Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris,
    miserere nobis.

  8. #8
    Pieter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Posts
    235

    Re: Used gear and availability

    There aren't a lot of those (Arca-Swiss, Linhof) cameras made today. So finding a late model one used is going to be harder and quite a bit more expensive than mass-produced and quickly obsolete digital cameras.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Buford, GA
    Posts
    13,144

    Re: Used gear and availability

    Quote Originally Posted by Pieter View Post
    There aren't a lot of those (Arca-Swiss, Linhof) cameras made today. So finding a late model one used is going to be harder and quite a bit more expensive than mass-produced and quickly obsolete digital cameras.
    How do you know that there aren’t many made today?

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    44

    Re: Used gear and availability

    I feel like the whole used market has slowed down a bit during the virus outbreak.

    Speaking of Toyo, I'm actually looking for good deal on a nice 45G. Been using a 45E for several years (picked up locally pretty cheap to try out LF) and decided I like it but it has some broken bits so want to get another one in better condition, and the metal parts of the G vs. the plastic of previous models look nice.

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