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Thread: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

  1. #1

    Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    Hello! I'm looking for a copystand with what I can only describe as "geared height adjustment". What I want to do is set my macro lens to a certain magnification, then focus by moving the entire camera up or down. Obviously, this is only practical if I can smoothly make micro-adjustments to height via some sort of geared mechanism. On B&H, the Beseler CS Digital/Photo-Video Copy Stand description says "A rack and pinion elevation system positions your still, digital or video camera where it can be easily locked into position". I think this is what I'm looking for, however...it costs $800. Is there an affordable copy stand with this feature? Is there a way to DIY something like this?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Buford, GA
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    13,998

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    Any of the Kaiser stands will be better and have a wide selection of top and bottom lighting as well as camera, arms. Also,available are polarized and diffusion systems for the lights.

  3. #3

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    If it's me I would probably try this macro gadget that looks like this: https://www.walmart.com/ip/4-Way-Mac...erId=101041703
    in conjunction with a tripod that is equipped with a reversible geared center column

    Essentially this combo achieves two thing, the geared center column gets you close, and the fine geared gadget does the last bit of fine adjustment.

  4. #4
    Eric Woodbury
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    1,538

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    get an old Beseler 45M frame
    my picture blog
    ejwoodbury.blogspot.com

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    NYC
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    518

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    eric i was just going to recomend an enlarger. i think it can be adapted easily enough to mount a camera. and most enlargers are free these days.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    Forest Grove, Ore.
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    4,027

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    I have a Polaroid MP4 that, even years ago, cost me only a couple of hundred. It's not technically rack and pinion. But, I think that this would do what you want.

    An MP4 can come with it's own 4x5 camera, and they made an adapter for medium format and smaller cameras. (I made my own from a PVC plumbing pipe.)

  7. #7
    Tin Can's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    17,813

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    Lighting is very important

    I like to shoot long enough lens to lower distortion with My lenses

    I tried every copy stand suggested. I use an 8' tall studio camera stand, then build around that as it seems every copy task is vastly different

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Salomon View Post
    Any of the Kaiser stands will be better and have a wide selection of top and bottom lighting as well as camera, arms. Also,available are polarized and diffusion systems for the lights.

  8. #8

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    Quote Originally Posted by fuegocito View Post
    If it's me I would probably try this macro gadget that looks like this: https://www.walmart.com/ip/4-Way-Mac...erId=101041703
    in conjunction with a tripod that is equipped with a reversible geared center column

    Essentially this combo achieves two thing, the geared center column gets you close, and the fine geared gadget does the last bit of fine adjustment.
    This is an intriguing option! I think I could pretty easily mount this to a DIY copy stand such as this one:https://www.reddit.com/r/AnalogCommu...for_under_130/

  9. #9

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Ron View Post
    eric i was just going to recomend an enlarger. i think it can be adapted easily enough to mount a camera. and most enlargers are free these days.
    A brilliant idea! Thanks to you both.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Feb 2020
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    97

    Re: Most affordable copy stand with geared height adjustment? (Rack and pinion?)

    What about using a tripod and copying horizontally rather than vertically. Obviously it depends on what you are copying but it works.

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