Show Us Your Camera

Paul Kay

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Actually, I'd be interested in when movements actually started to be used. I am aware that lems maker Thomas Grubb actually designed and built at least a prototype camera which could have been used with movements around about 1860, but I think this was unusual back then and it is unclear whether the use of movements was in fact a design intention or consequence. Any ideas?
 

David M

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Paul,
I wasn't making any assumptions about how you'll use the camera. I was guessing that if it was used for copying, the items to be copied (who knows? – paintings, plans, tapestries, manuscripts, stained glass, other photographs...) could have been fragile or unwieldy and it may have been useful to place them once and then adjust the image by a small amount, to leave the subject undisturbed.
On the other hand, this may simply be the normal front standard that Gandolfi had in stock and the "special-ness" lay in making the base rigid. Mere speculation on my part.
 

Paul Kay

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Oddly enough the camera came with a square lens plate/flange fitted but no lens. I just tried this with a Penrose-Wray process lens which I picked up very cheaply (need servicing - any suggestions?) and of course it fits perfectly! So I'll keep this to go with the camera (although the lens is probably 20-30 years earlier in date) simply because it seems like a good match albeit from a very different form of photography. [FWIW I remember making colour separations physically when studying - a really exacting palaver!]
 

Ian Grant

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Actually, I'd be interested in when movements actually started to be used. I am aware that lems maker Thomas Grubb actually designed and built at least a prototype camera which could have been used with movements around about 1860, but I think this was unusual back then and it is unclear whether the use of movements was in fact a design intention or consequence. Any ideas?
A quick glance of cameras a rising front 1858, swing back 1867, rear tilt by the late1870's which is when the market is beginning to explode as dry plates become commercially available.

Your Gandolfi (in this thread) is a stripped down version of the Gandofi Universal itself a derivation of Hare's Improved Portable Bellows Camera of 1878. Hare has an influence on other London manufacturers like Watson and it's no coincidence that both Watson and Gandolfi fiend cameras have similarities to Hare cameras as well.

Ian
 

Paul Kay

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FWIW here's Grubb's somewhat unwieldy 1858 idea which consisted of numerous 'pivots' so it could have had movements if so desired - from the text its clear that at least one was actually built and they were to be produced (I'd guess to order). I can find no trace of any surviving from web searches though. (courtesy of the RPS online Journal Archive - a great if glitchy resource).
1738
 

David M

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With modern materials and micro-motors, that could become an infinitely-adjustable iPhone-controlled super-camera. Simply (!) a question of controlling the length of four rods. Sadly, I think the moment has passed.
 

James T

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With modern materials and micro-motors, that could become an infinitely-adjustable iPhone-controlled super-camera. Simply (!) a question of controlling the length of four rods. Sadly, I think the moment has passed.
Actually, it would be very unstable as all of the sections are 4-sided so the lens could rotate in a wide range of directions without changing the lengths of any of the struts.
The "proper" way to do it would be with a hexapod, where there are two rigid equilateral triangles pointing in opposite directions, one surrounding the plate holder and the other surrounding the lens mount. Extensible rods then connect each vertex with the two nearest on the other plane.
 

David M

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Yes indeed. I was imagining that there might be a few more problems to solve. Your solution sounds even better. A mesh-like structure with the angle of each joint being programmable might be the final answer. Almost a living camera, but beyond my abilities. Ghost of Buckminster Fuller, are you listening?
 

KenS

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Jason... a warm welcome from this old fella across 'the pond'.

Is this your first 'large format' camera?

Ken
 

Jasonpinder

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Hello! Yes! Had 35mm and medium format but this is the first large format! I did use one many years ago at collecting ... always fancied owning one! It’s an amazing bit of kit! Really enjoying leaving how to use it!
 

andylewis

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Hi all

This is my DeVere Kensington 10x8 restoration project. I have just picked up some new bellows from Custom Bellows in Birmingham and I'm in need of a focus screen. I've seen some video's on making screens but I wondered if anyone knows a uk based supplier. I have also attached an image of Arca Swiss 5x4.
 

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Ian Grant

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Welcome Andrew.

Nice light weight camera that De Vere :D I sold mine about 7 years ago it was a Whole plate model with 3 backs WP, HP. and 5x4. I had Camera Bellows (now Custom Bellows)make bag bellows for mine as the bellows wouldn't compress enough for 5x4, they made the originals and when I visited the drawings were pulled from a map drawer.

Sent you a PM about a focus screen.

Ian
 

Donald Qualls

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Hmm. Guess I should get the Speed Graphic out and take a couple sheets of my Graphic View, an old classic monorail. I've got the first version, without balanced tilts. I didn't even know the level of convenience that would add until a couple weeks ago, first time I've used significant movements in an actual image -- and had to refocus every time I adjusted the front tilt. Then again, the first version is quite a bit less spendy for just that reason, and much of the time I don't even need or want movements.

Now, if I could get a Graflok back for it (or even better, one to fit my Annie Speed)...
 

Ian Grant

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It's a beast. Anyone who has a De Vere enlarger knows how solid they are, almost over engineered, the cameras are just as solid, built to last.


Now, if I could get a Graflok back for it (or even better, one to fit my Annie Speed)...
Having used a Wista 45DX camera for 30+ years and a De Vere Whole Plate monorail (with Half Plate and 5x4 reducing backs) before that both had spring backs I never lusted for or needed a a Graflok back.

However the Wista spring back opens wide allowing a Wista 6x7 or 6x9 RF back, they made them specially with glass protecting plate. There are roll film back that fit all spring backs.

Ian
 

Ian Grant

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De Vere's have a full range of movements, on both front and rear standards, rise and fall, tilts, swing, and shift.

Ian
 
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