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Thread: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ...

  1. #1
    Dann Corbit
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    Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ...

    Trying to figure out what size hole do I need for my lens board, I found this:
    https://alphaxbetax.files.wordpress....tic-alphax.pdf

    And even better this:
    https://alphaxbetax.com/resources/
    Which is full of exact specifications!

    I guess you guys already know about it, but I figure that if I put a link in here the next newbie with a question will know where to look.

    I have a bid on a longer lens too. I figure a 127, a 210 and a 305 will fill most of my needs.
    Besides portraits, I also like landscapes, so I might need a wider lens for that.

    Any recommendations for a favorite short landscape lens that you simply could not live without?
    If it's $1000 or more, I will have to live without, because my budget won't allow that.
    I paid less than $100 for the one I just bought, along with shipping and tax.
    I probably won't spend more than $300 on a lens, at least for now, so I still like to hear about the great lenses, I probably just can't afford them.
    ;-)

    It's for a Calumet 4x5

  2. #2

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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    Um, er, ah, the LF Home Page (button at the upper left corner of this page) has resources. FAQs, articles, ...

    There's also a not-so-obvious source. The first post in this https://www.largeformatphotography.i...mainly)-lenses discussion contains a link to a useful list of useful sources of information, including one to alphaxbetax.com. Check it out. Unlike the FAQs and articles it is actively maintained.

    Which Calumet 4x5 do you have? And why aren't you thinking wide angle? The normal focal length for 4x5 is ~ 150 mm. 127 isn't very wide on the format.

    Not to denigrate y'r new 127, but it was intended for 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 and 4x5 cameras with minimal movements, doesn't have enough coverage for much movements on 4x5. You might want to consider selling it and getting a 150 with more coverage.

  3. #3
    Dann Corbit
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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fromm View Post
    Um, er, ah, the LF Home Page (button at the upper left corner of this page) has resources. FAQs, articles, ...

    Which Calumet 4x5 do you have? And why aren't you thinking wide angle? The normal focal length for 4x5 is ~ 150 mm. 127 isn't very wide on the format.

    Not to denigrate y'r new 127, but it was intended for 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 and 4x5 cameras with minimal movements, doesn't have enough coverage for much movements on 4x5. You might want to consider selling it and getting a 150 with more coverage.
    I have one with a 20 inch rail, so I guess it is a CC-400. It does not have a model number on it anywhere that I can see.
    I have another similar one ordered, which should arrive today. (It is a CC-401 so it has a longer bellows)

    The 127 and 210 are intended mainly for portraits, so I probably don't need a lot of movements with those, but I suppose I will be tempted to try them for landscape shots and then suffer the consequences.
    I'm really new, so chances are good I will turn out to be wrong about it, and I will buy another one when that happens.
    Some of us learn the hard way. I really like fast lenses for portraits with 35mm, and I guess it will turn out the same for large format.
    But I might be extrapolating in a way that does not really work out well.
    I figure that I am going to make a lot of mistakes and buy wrong things, but I learn from my mistakes.

  4. #4

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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    I used a 3 1/2" (90mm) Wollensak Raptar in a Rapax on my CC-400, with a recessed lens board. You could probably find one for around $150 these days. Older shutters will probably need a CLA, so you might want to budget for that.

  5. #5
    Dann Corbit
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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    I just got your reference document for lens information.
    That really looks fantastic!
    I can see that you have put an enormous amount of work into making that document.
    I thank you sincerely for your efforts.

  6. #6
    Dann Corbit
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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Dugan View Post
    I used a 3 1/2" (90mm) Wollensak Raptar in a Rapax on my CC-400, with a recessed lens board. You could probably find one for around $150 these days. Older shutters will probably need a CLA, so you might want to budget for that.
    I am sure this is incredibly ignorant to ask, but what is a CLA?
    I did a forum search with the term, but it came up empty.

  7. #7

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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    CLA = Clean, Lube & Adjust.

    Old shutters become unreliable over time if not "exercised"...the lubricants congeal and become hard or sticky, causing problems.

  8. #8
    Dann Corbit
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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Dugan View Post
    CLA = Clean, Lube & Adjust.

    Old shutters become unreliable over time if not "exercised"...the lubricants congeal and become hard or sticky, causing problems.
    I see. I live in the Seattle area, and I imagine I will need to find an expert.
    I am good with mechanical things, and might be tempted to try it myself if I can find detailed instructions.
    You have to be careful about Youtube instruction videos.
    I have seen horrific bad advice on lens cleaning along with good advice. But if you don't know the bad advice is horrific, you might try it.
    I watched a really interesting video about removing fungus. Hydrogen peroxide was used with a cotton swab. That part made sense to me.
    But then he put a tiny amount of lighter fluid on the lens (a drop or so) with a piece of lense paper protecting the lens from the direct splash and keeping it out of the edges of the lens, I guess.
    That part does not make sense to me and I really wish he had explained why he did it.

  9. #9

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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Dann Corbit View Post
    I have one with a 20 inch rail, so I guess it is a CC-400. It does not have a model number on it anywhere that I can see.

    The 127 and 210 are intended mainly for portraits, so I probably don't need a lot of movements with those, but I suppose I will be tempted to try them for landscape shots
    Thanks for the reply. CC, then, not Calumet-badged Cambo. Very useful camera.

    127 is usually considered a little short for portrature on 4x5 but by all means try it out.

  10. #10
    Dann Corbit
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    Re: Just bought a Wollensak 127mm f/4.5 Raptar Lens w/ Alphax Synchromatic Shutter ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fromm View Post
    Thanks for the reply. CC, then, not Calumet-badged Cambo. Very useful camera.

    127 is usually considered a little short for portrature on 4x5 but by all means try it out.
    That one is for family portraits. I might also try it for full body dramatic shots, with a green screen.

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