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Thread: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    Alabama
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    368

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    Thanks Frank, This came in a sale, and I've never used one. I tried and it's broken. It is not going to be thrown in the garbage, it has all 6 septum's.
    If I can't find someone to give it a little TLC, then it'll go for parts to help someone else.
    I have not come across any Toyo film holders yet.
    Bill

  2. #12

    Join Date
    Mar 1998
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    128

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    Bill - If you have 6 flat septums you are probably ahead of the game. Look for Grafmatics that are missing septums or have some bad ones (if the seller is willing to admit it). They can go for cheap and your good septums round out an otherwise bad holder. I have 3 reliable Grafmatics built from 4 iffy ones.

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    368

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    Doug, thanks, that is a good idea.
    Bill

  4. #14

    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Location
    Baraboo, Wisconsin
    Posts
    7,694

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    I seem to remember that years ago someone made some sort of calculations to determine whether and when you reached a point with Grafmatics where they took up more space and/or weighed more than the same number of sheets of film carried in normal holders. I don't remember that point unfortunately but I do remember there was a point of diminishing returns when carrying them in a backpack, i.e. a point at which you were better off from a buk and/or weight standpoint just using normal film holders. At least I think I remember all that or something like 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.

  5. #15

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    9,472

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    It's zero if the darn things break a few miles from the car. That's the thing that gets me about them, there is no indication of when they are going to fail and you can blow six shots instead of one or two (with a regular holder, which rarely fails if in decent condition).

  6. #16

    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Carmel Valley, CA
    Posts
    1,047

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    My main beef with Grafmatics is that once you've pulled the slide (out and back in), in anticipation of a perfectly breaking wave, shaft of light, or other decisive moment and, if that moment doesn't fall into place, you can't simply replace the dark slide. It's necessary to cycle the film, essentially a wasted sheet. That is, unless you're comfortable risking an accidental double exposure or otherwise trashing any/all the 5 other good frames to later get back to that unexposed sheet.

    I too rue that I once had a portion of my work ruined (on a months-long trip to Glacier NP) by a malfunctioning Grafmatic. I'm somewhat of a geeky McGuyver type, not especially intimidated by their mechanical complexity. Nevertheless, most Grafmatics were used hard, every last one of them is now upwards of 40 years old, and there's only so much life in them. I've got just a couple winnowed down from my former half-dozen. I keep these two for Ektar and Portra, largely since Kodak films aren't available in Readyloads anymore (Ektar and new Portra never were). In Fujicolor and Fujichrome, I still use a fast dwindling supply of Quickloads, also gone by the boards. In just about all but windy conditions, I'd prefer using Quickloads/Readyloads, but whattaya gonna do?

  7. #17

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    368

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    Thanks everyone, I think I'll just put it up for sale for parts. There is a lot of negative feedback, on something that was a good idea and worked for many years, but is now no longer reliable. Maybe someone else can use it.
    Bill

  8. #18
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    5,560

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    I'm just trying to be a contrarian here, but I've used about 20 different Graf backs in the last three years, quite hard, I might add, and I've only had one fail on me.

  9. #19

    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    136

    Re: Malfunctioning Grafmatic Film Holder

    I have 15 Graphmatics, and I have only had problems with one of them. They were designed for hand-held 4X5 press photography, and that is how I use them - for hand-held (or monopod) shooting with my Linhof Master Technika or 4x5 Technar. An outing with 3 holders gives you a compact rapid fire system, 18 shots, and unique opportunities. The nice thing is that after you take a shot, you are very quickly able to load the next one using only one hand.

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