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Thread: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

  1. #1

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    How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    Been doing some digging around can't seem to nail down how to identify a horseman 4x5 camera. I did find some old threads. I'm thinking of buying one off of eBay and it's listed as an LX but there are so many versions that look absolutely identical how do I tell them apart? From what I understand there are LX, LS, Le, 450 basically they all look the same if you look at them in a photo you can't tell the difference.

    I have a guy on eBay that has one for cheap in mint condition I don't think he even knows what it is it's listed as an LX but I doubt that it is.

  2. #2

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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    The LX has an additional micrometer scale nearest the standard holder (green arrow) to allow you to rise/fall the tilt axis up or down. This is in addition to the regular rise/fall geared controls (red arrow). The other models lack this ability, and only have the red arrow rise/fall.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by pchong; 4-Dec-2022 at 08:28. Reason: Added photo.
    Peter Chong
    Singapore

  3. #3
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    I would tell you

    but I am not ready to

    only a week ago I posted about this

    Hint search B&H

    I have them all
    Tin Can

  4. #4

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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    Take the time to look over the old B&H view camera catalog from back in them days.. Listings and info from Arca Swiss to Toyo.
    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/FrameWo...FormatView.pdf

    There was a time not too long ago when Horseman L series monorails were beyond extreme bargains on the market as they were widely un-appreciated for what they are (excellent monorail). Having owned/used the Horseman L series in the past, they are nice in many ways and some what interchangeable with Sinar modules. It was possible to purchase the basic Horseman LE for a bit more than $100 or the cost of a few boxes of 4x5 film back in them days.. Not any more as with most things view camera, the market popularity has increased their value.. Don't get caught up in "features" as any of these Horseman L series is fully capable of most any combination of camera movements front and rear needed. Features are essentially time savers when used properly, ponder if you're working in a commercial studio environment pressed to produce a mountain of sheet film with deadlines around your neck and a mountain of bill that must be paid... In this specific environment is when these view camera "features" can make a difference ~and~ these feature must be properly used if they are to have any benefits. Know this is nothing like digital or 35mm or 120 roll film cameras where features and options are a "thing" that is marketed to sell gear. Think buttons on them old VCR or similar remotes where 90+ % of them buttons are never used.. with less than 10% of them buttons are ever used.

    Realities are, at the beginning of trying to learn how to view camera, there are SO many skills and knowledge that must be gained and developed, don't overly focus on the camera.. focus on getting -A- good camera (IMO, a good modular monorail) then work hard at learning, acquiring, developing the skills and knowledge on how to view camera. What can become a serious obstacle is a view camera or Lenin shutter that fights you and does not do what they are required to do with little confusion or difficulty in operation as it is difficult enough to learn how to view camera.. any obstacles added will make the learning curve that much more difficult.

    As for "condition".. beauty is only finish deep.. What is far more important is functionality.. That beauty on the top visible part of the finish can and will never make your images more ... beautiful...


    Bernice


    Quote Originally Posted by Califmike33 View Post
    Been doing some digging around can't seem to nail down how to identify a horseman 4x5 camera. I did find some old threads. I'm thinking of buying one off of eBay and it's listed as an LX but there are so many versions that look absolutely identical how do I tell them apart? From what I understand there are LX, LS, Le, 450 basically they all look the same if you look at them in a photo you can't tell the difference.

    I have a guy on eBay that has one for cheap in mint condition I don't think he even knows what it is it's listed as an LX but I doubt that it is.

  5. #5
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models


  6. #6
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    Many Horseman Studio camera were heavily used and abused

    Back when they were unwanted by anybody, I often bought two 1/2 damaged to gain one good enough

    Rear movement often hide gear rack damage

    NOT simple to fix, designed for expert to fix

    I am not that guy

    Got a custom 8X10 on this forum with only front movements

    I thanked that member long ago

    Horseman studio cameras are VERY heavy, made for STUDIO only

    and a PITA with Polaroid, I still have some
    Tin Can

  7. #7
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    Also NO PARTS anywhere
    Tin Can

  8. #8

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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    Correct..

    Many of these L series Horseman cameras were used HARD daily in working studios. They have burned many Thousand sheets of film over their years of service.

    This is true for the majority of better monorail cameras as they were image making tools used by those to put food on their table and a roof over their head. Few were "babied" and put on a shelf to be admired.. It was mostly all about their ability to produce images.. Similar applies to view camera lenses from that era.


    Used/owned monorail cameras from Arca Swiss to Toyo, only the Sinar modular system remains and recently added the Linhof Technikardan 23s due to the need for a 2x3_6x9 roll film view camera.. Previous to this was the Arca Swiss 69.

    Bernice



    Quote Originally Posted by Tin Can View Post
    Also NO PARTS anywhere

  9. #9

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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    Well I appreciate all of your guys responses that helps me a lot that link that takes me to the catalog to show me all the different models does not work at least on my phone I cannot connect to that link.

    The guy I'm interested in buying the camera from says the camera weighs 8.5 lb which is not terribly heavy for a full monorail camera. They just look like they're built like a tank and very precision with all the gear movements I'm interested in one. I was just unsure how to identify them but I guess I won't get caught up in all the models because there's too many damn models and they all look the same.

  10. #10

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    Re: How to identify Horseman monorail camera models

    Here's a link to the eBay listing maybe you guys can tell me what model you think this is.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/28506328950...mis&media=COPY

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