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Thread: Giant large format

  1. #1

    Giant large format

    I have recently purchased a 20" x 24" Paul Drews German camera. I know nothing a bout this camera except that it BIG, REALLY BIG. I would like info for parts, ad vise, lenses, film for it, reducing backs, tripods?, everything and anything con cerning this camera. It kinda looks like the one that Calumet rents for seminars for Polaroid. Just give me a site or e-mail address and the questions will come . I found this camera in an old mans garage and he said his uncle gave it to him in the 60's. He can't remember anything past that. He said it was in his way. ( OOhh my god!) He said he thought about throwing it away! He said that he knew it was an antique and that's the only reason he kept it. Man what a find. It has t o many options to list. Just get in touch with me someone!!!!!

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Mar 2000

    Giant large format

    Jason, Can you post a picture for us to look at. I kinda think I know what you have, but more information would be helpful. What sort of options are too many to list. These could give some valuable information to those of us who may be able to help you!

  3. #3

    Giant large format

    You Lucky bugger! Now, how will you pay for film? I guess you don't have to eat or put the kids through orthodontia? Did it come with tripod holders and a lens? Haver you got trays large enough? Or are you gonna drum process?

    Try e-mailing these floks to get an idea what you're getting into:

    and of course Ron Wisner at

  4. #4
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Honolulu, Hawai'i

    Giant large format

    Nice find!

  5. #5

    Giant large format

    I think Bergger has film in that size.

  6. #6

    Giant large format

    Darkroom Innovations (now called the View Camera Store) sells HP5+ film in 20 x 24 for $382 per 25 sheets. That's over $15 per shot, not including processing.

    I've been told by a Jobo employee that film can be processed in a Jobo 20 x 24 print drum. The largest sheet film drum Jobo makes is 16 x 20.

    Wisner's site has a list of classic lenses that cover 20 x 24. Some say the Fujinon 600 C covers this format, even though its specs say otherwise.

    Ries makes a tripod for the 60 pound Wisner 20 x 24, the A100-2. If your camera is substantially lighter, you might be able to get away with the lighter Ries A100.

    Various people make filmholders in extra large format, but be cautious: once you get above 8 x 10, there are no universal standards, so some filmholders will fit and others won't.

    Reducing backs would probably have to be custom made. But why would you want one? If you're going to go to the trouble of carrying a 20 x 24 camera, you should get 20 x 24 images as a reward for that effort.

    I just ordered a 16 x 20 camera, so I'll be interested to hear about y

  7. #7
    tim atherton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 1998

    Giant large format

    Lotus makes a 20x24 camera and have some acesories - film, holders etc. But not cheap!

    Tim A
    You'd be amazed how small the demand is for pictures of trees... - Fred Astaire to Audrey Hepburn blog

  8. #8

    Giant large format

    wow! the thought of trying to deal with hand processing film that large seems pretty overwhelming to me (though i can remember when i was sure there was no way i would ever be interested in using a big bulky 4x5 monorail camera). as a serious admirer of the 19th century mammoth plate photographers such as watkins and baldus, i would just like to give my most sincere encouragement to those of you who endeavor to create images at such a magnificent scale. i have closely examined the ~21x28" contact prints of many of watkins views from oregon in 1867, and if he could do that with the optics of that period, i cannot imagine how incredibly fine a well made contemporary 20x24 inch contact print might look!

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Baraboo, Wisconsin

    Giant large format

    $380 for 25 sheets? You sure won't be doing much bracketing! There was an article in "View Camera" magazine (I believe) some time back by someone who used a camera this size and the various difficulties he faced and how he solved them. Among other things, as I recall it took two people to load the film holders. In any event, you should be able to find the article through the index and it might be of some help. It's conceivable that the article was in "Photo Techniques" but "View Camera" seems to most logical place. You might also contact Tillman Crane, who puts on the mammoth camera workshop once a year. He's a very nice guy and I'm sure would try to answer any specific questions you have. I don't have his e mail address but you could do a search for his name in or maybe someone else can post it.
    Brian Ellis
    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you do criticize them you'll be
    a mile away and you'll have their shoes.

  10. #10

    Giant large format

    Hi, I saw an advert in a magazine, you can get 100 ASA Maco b+w film for #60 for 10 sheets or #162 for 30. It is in the UK, the website is:

    Also, they sell the same film in: 20x16 - #40.00 for 10, #110 for 30 12x16 - #24.00 for 10, #66 for 30 11x14 - #19.00 for 10, #54 for 30 10x12 - #14.00 for 10, #39 for 30 9 1/2x 12 - #14.00 for 10, #39 for 30 10x8 - #11.00 for 10, #30 for 30 6 1/2x8 1/2 - #9.00 for 10, #24 for 30 5x7, 4 3/4x6 1/2, 5x4, 2 1/2x3 1/2

    Hope this helps somebody....

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