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Thread: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

  1. #21

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    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    Jim and Mark,

    I've had a thought in the past that I might make a spacer for a Cooke triplet Series II with the ring diffusion, which seems to have much less travel than the knucklers. I got this idea by removing the front cell and moving it back and forth in space while looking through both glasses. I guess you could cannibalize an old 35mm or MF lens for the focusing mount and use that to move your glass back and forth.

    Cheers, Steve

  2. #22

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    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    Are the shorter versions of Velostigmats II the same in quality as the ones with the soft adjusting ring?
    Or do they just miss the ability of adjusting softness?
    Last edited by Ramiro Elena; 7-Feb-2010 at 14:49.

  3. #23

    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    953

    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    One correction - the diffusion feature was phased out in the late 20's or very early 30's. Later Velos do not have it.

    Secondly, the most interesting variation of the Velostigmat is the "Beach Multifocal Lens." Two non-diffusing versions were built and marketed by Wollensak for Mr. H. Beach, a photographer, inventor and holder of patents, the Series A, a classic soft focus lens, and the Series B, which was only slightly soft. Beach was very interested in increasing the depth of field of lenses, he achieved this by introducing a hand-ground aspheric lens as the front element in the Velostigmat Tessar formula. The induced axial aberration was enough to increase depth-of-field somewhat at the cost of some sharpness overall - hence the term, multifocal. The Series A had the addition of a unique element with concentric ripples built into the surface. The optical principles behind his patents are explained by the legendary optical scientist, Rudolph Kingslake, in his book, "Lenses in Photography...The Practical Guide to Optics." The Beach Multifocal lenses are almost forgotten today, but were well respected (and used) by the most well known studio portraitists of the mid-20th century. I'll add as well, that the more ordinary non-diffusing Velostigmats, and the later Raptars are terrific portrait lenses, appearing not over-sharp when wide open and producing a very smooth rendering of out-of-focus areas.

  4. #24

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    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Sawyer View Post
    Thanks, all! Before I get too much credit, though, I want to credit Darryl Baird, another regular here, for turning me on to this modification a little over two years ago:

    http://www.largeformatphotography.in...ht=velostigmat

    And you'll note in that thread that Jim Galli had another way of getting to the restraining screw from the back side, but mine didn't work that way. There are a number of different barrel designs for the Velostigmat Series II, but the one I described seems to be the most common, at least in my experience.
    wow, your method looks a lot less trouble and dangerous... I managed to scratch the lens while performing this on one of the two I modified. I hope this coming summer will allow me more time to experiment with focus/fuzz/aperture combos.

    One thing I love about these lenses is their incredible functionality. I use mine for normal, macro, and portraiture shooting. That's a different kind of (triple) convertible.

    Here is a approx. 2:1 shot with the 9" Velo II
    Last edited by Darryl Baird; 18-Feb-2010 at 23:25. Reason: probably wrong about the magnification after looking at the image

  5. #25

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    Aug 2009
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    Red face Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    First a special thanks to Mark Sawyer & Darryl Baird for sharing this very valuable "Velo" modification information—it works wonderfully!!!

    Guys a few months ago, I had a question on the best lens (purchase) options for vintage soft focus lenses. Numerous lenses were discussed but the Velostigmat Series II defocus stood out strong in my mind. Besides Mark Sawyer had recommended its consideration and then later pointed me to this thread.

    Since that time, Jim Galli was kind enough to give me some additional guidance. In fact, I bought a "minty" Wollensak 12" "Velo" thanks to Jim!!! I've included a picture below of this fine lens. In addition, I sold my 4x5 camera which had a small 4"x4" lens board and moved up to a really nice Deardorff 8x10 which allows me to handle the "Velo" lens with ease.

    Tonight, I conducted "minor surgery" on my "Velo" lens and followed the defocus modification directions as per Mark's instruction. The beauty ring on this lens was VERY tight and wouldn't budge until I took an adjustable spanner wrench to the lens to loosen the beauty retainer ring, which then loosened right up. I'll mention the source in case someone needs a good spanner wrench. Ebay store: http://myworld.ebay.com/heavystar/

    Now I have about (17) rotations instead of just the former "maximum" (5) settings. So needless to say, this seems to have been a great success and will put it to use very soon!

    Thanks again to the Large Format Photography community for sharing "good stuff"!!!

  6. #26

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    Sep 2005
    Location
    NJ
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    170

    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    Quote Originally Posted by Darryl Baird View Post
    wow, your method looks a lot less trouble and dangerous... I managed to scratch the lens while performing this on one of the two I modified. I hope this coming summer will allow me more time to experiment with focus/fuzz/aperture combos.

    One thing I love about these lenses is their incredible functionality. I use mine for normal, macro, and portraiture shooting. That's a different kind of (triple) convertible.

    Here is a approx. 2:1 shot with the 9" Velo II
    Very nice shot, Darryl.

    I use my 12" for everything also and I really like the lens. My soft focus surgery was done some time back after reading Mark's thread about this lens. It's not so hard to take the little screw out, but need to be careful. Well doing that, I cleaned the thread, add a little bit grease to it, now it turns silky smooth.

    I will tape the front together if I want to use the most soft setting (which is the front element is about to fall off ).

    Alex W.

  7. #27

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    Feb 2009
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    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    Just modified a 12" Velostigmat w/diffuser in a barrel mount. I'll add a few notes:

    [1] The beauty retainer ring actually holds the front element in place, so be mindful you don't accidentally drop out the front element.

    [2] I didn't have to completely remove either screw from the lens to make the modification. Once you get the retainer ring off the front of the lens, the "set" screw that's in the front mount just needs to backed out enough to clear the catch screw in the mount below it. The screw will stick out a little from the mount, but the backside of the retainer ring is beveled and has enough clearance to accommodate it. The benefit of leaving the screws in place is that it's easy to put the lens back to its original state, and you don't have track down the screw to do it.

    [3] On the 12" focal length lens the front mount comes out after 4 full rotations, so I limit mine to around 3 max. Otherwise it gets a little dicey. The soft-focus effect at 3 rotations looks very good on the ground glass.

  8. #28

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    Feb 2009
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    Bloomington, IN, USA
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    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images


    B&J 5x7 Rembrandt Portrait Camera Model II
    w/4x5 reducing back and Polaroid 545 film holder
    Wollensak Velostigmat Series II 12"/4.5 (modified), diffusion at 3 full rotations
    Polaroid Type 59
    1s @ f/4.5

    The focus was on the stem of the apple.

  9. #29

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    Mar 2006
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    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    I reread the thread but didn't find any mention of Johnathon Brewers site entitled "Wide Open"

    more good info and some lovely images as well

  10. #30

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    Mar 2006
    Location
    Coast of Oregon
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    455

    Re: Velostigmat Series II; Info and Images

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Booth View Post
    ...
    Since that time, Jim Galli was kind enough to give me some additional guidance. In fact, I bought a "minty" Wollensak 12" "Velo" thanks to Jim!!! I've included a picture below of this fine lens. In addition, I sold my 4x5 camera which had a small 4"x4" lens board and moved up to a really nice Deardorff 8x10 which allows me to handle the "Velo" lens with ease.

    Tonight, I conducted "minor surgery" on my "Velo" lens and followed the defocus modification directions as per Mark's instruction. The beauty ring on this lens was VERY tight and wouldn't budge until I took an adjustable spanner wrench to the lens to loosen the beauty retainer ring, which then loosened right up. I'll mention the source in case someone needs a good spanner wrench. Ebay store: http://myworld.ebay.com/heavystar/

    Now I have about (17) rotations instead of just the former "maximum" (5) settings. So needless to say, this seems to have been a great success and will put it to use very soon!

    Thanks again to the Large Format Photography community for sharing "good stuff"!!!
    great looking lens, I'm a little jealous

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