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Thread: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

  1. #1
    Jeffery Dale Welker
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Mesa, Arizona
    Posts
    461

    K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    I'm considering adding a Canham 4x5/5x7 wood camera to my quiver. I have a couple of questions:

    Q1 - I've generally understood that this is a modular camera that can accommodate either 5x7 or a 4x5 backs. However, there is a statement on Canham's website that perplexes my simple mind. It says; "All specs are the same for both the 4x5 and the 5x7 EXCEPT the dimensions of the 5x7 are 9.5" x 10.375" x 4.125" which equals 241.3 mm x 263.53 mm x 104.775 mm". What is this "EXCEPT" statement clarifying? Aren't the dimensions the same regardless of whether the 4x5 or 5x7 back is being used? If there are truly different dimensions, depending on the back being used, why aren't they listed for both the 4x5 and 5x7 scenarios? Please feel free to conk me on the head (i.e. coconut) with the obvious answer that is currently eluding me.

    Q2 - Canham's website indicates their 4x5/5x7 wood camera uses 110mm lensboards. Does this mean it would accept an Arca-Swiss 110x110 lensboard?

    Thank you.

    My dimensional uncertainty notwithstanding, looks like a terrific camera.
    Last edited by Salmo22; 9-Oct-2022 at 10:42.
    "I have this feeling of walking around for days with the wind knocked out of me." - Jim Harrison

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Mar 2002
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    now in Tucson, AZ
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    3,343

    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    I do believe that Mr. Canham builds his cameras in your neighborhood. Why don't you ask him directly? You might even be able to visit his shop.

  3. #3
    Moderator
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    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    What Mark said - Keith Canham has a reputation for being very responsive. In the meantime:

    Q1: IIRC the 5x7 dimensions are the right ones as the 4x5 back is a reducing back.
    Q2: The Canham 110mm boards are similar to Toyo field boards, but a bit thicker - you can use Toyo boards on a Canham, but not the other way. The Arca boards are a different shape and aren't compatible with Toyo/Canham.

  4. #4

    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    My 4x5 reducing back is slightly thicker (more offset from the body of the camera) than the 5x7 back.
    I have had my Canham for more than 20 years and my use of it seems second nature, but it is worth playing with the camera for a few days before buying because it is not for everyone. I know that some people find it fiddly.
    Last edited by Jason Greenberg Motamedi; 9-Oct-2022 at 15:37.

  5. #5
    Moderator
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    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Greenberg Motamedi View Post
    I have had my Canham for more than 20 years and my use of it seems second nature, but it is worth playing with the camera for a few days before buying because its is not for everyone. I know that some people find it fiddly.
    I had a 5x12 wooden Canham for a while, same basic design as the 4x5/5x7. It was beautifully made, but I indeed found it too fiddly for my taste. Not a question of good vs bad, just a matter of finding what suits you.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Feb 2015
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    Eastern Sierra
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    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    I am on a 3 week trip shooting 4x10, 5x7, and 4x5 with the same camera. I would agree with other posters that it can be less than intuitive but it is beautifully made and predictable. I have been to Keith’s shop where I found him dedicated to the craft and helpful with my purchase. I have had the camera for about 6 years.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Oct 2013
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    Maryland
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    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    I've had both the wood and the metal (MQC) cameras from Mr. Canham, and I prefer the metal version. Keith is a straight-up guy.

  8. #8
    Jeffery Dale Welker
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Mesa, Arizona
    Posts
    461

    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    I appreciate the kind replies. I've reached out to Mr. Canham, as suggested, and will report back on his response.
    "I have this feeling of walking around for days with the wind knocked out of me." - Jim Harrison

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Sep 2022
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    32

    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    I have a Canham.
    I find Keith Canham very responsive. I am sure he will promptly satisfy all your questions.

  10. #10
    Jeffery Dale Welker
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Mesa, Arizona
    Posts
    461

    Re: K.B. Canham Users - 4x5/5x7 Wood Camera

    Mr. Canham responded quickly this morning. For those interested, here are his responses:

    The wooden 4x5 camera, the T645, sells for $3275.00. The 5x7 back is $570.00. Neither the 4x5 or 5x7 come with a Fresnel Screen. The 5x7 can have a Fresnel included for an additional $250.00. I have one 4x5 Fresnel left and it would add $175.00 to the cost of the camera. (When it is gone, I will no longer be able to offer a 4x5 Fresnel) The 4x5 ground glass protector sells for $30.00 and the 5x7 for $37.00. We no longer make the compendium lens shade. The 110 Arca board is not the board we use on our cameras. I understand that there are people using this board, but I have no experience with this. We could manufacture a custom front standard to accept the 110mm Arca board. The estimate for this is $850.00 with a lead time of 3-5 months.

    All questions were completely answered. Now I just need to make a decision?
    "I have this feeling of walking around for days with the wind knocked out of me." - Jim Harrison

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