Stearman 445 tank

David M

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I'm afraid we've been a bit slow here. We should have emphasised the bellows earlier, but we only made a fleeting reference.
 

Ian Grant

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It appears after testing the bellows at night with a flashlight that the source is there. Quite porous. Usage in bright sun in the last couple of months must have worn the material which was already fading. If someone can suggest a UK fitter of new bellows that would be fantastic and in the meantime would placing a cloth over the top suffice? Thanks.
What camera ? I've restored a few sets of bellows over the years.

Ian
 

Darren Lewey

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Toyo 45A mark 2. The bellows were initially fine at first, at least with the 180 lens. Problems occurred with the 300mm which may be down to extending the bellows and thus revealing issues. Usage in bright sun in the last month may have caused faster deterioration.
 

David M

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Yes, a longer lens will expose any holes in the bellows. The other factor is that the film is exposed to light leaks for the whole time that the sheath is withdrawn. This can be much longer that the nominal exposure time as you may be adjusting the shutter or waiting for clouds to move or for the appropriate expression on a sitter's face.
There are also Chinese bellows available for your camera on Ebay, if you are interested.
I'm very pleased that you've arrived at solution.
 

Ian Grant

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Toyo 45A mark 2. The bellows were initially fine at first, at least with the 180 lens. Problems occurred with the 300mm which may be down to extending the bellows and thus revealing issues. Usage in bright sun in the last month may have caused faster deterioration.
I asked because I can often repair some types of bellows. I used to be able to get some thin black light proof repair tape (black or brown) I think it was repackaged 3M tape which is only available in a large quantity and is very expensive, it was great for repairs to bellows like the Toyo ones or Graflex Crow/Speed and Super Graphics and the repair is permanent and almost invisible.

A couple of years ago I restored a Speed Graphic for a friend and he'd bought some Chinese bellows which I fitted for him, they were excellent quality and reasonably priced. They are made by the same people who make bellows for Chinese LF cameras.

Ian
 

David M

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Here's a link to the Chinese bellows. I am only the messenger, so you'd need to check before buying.
 

Ian Grant

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That's where the Speed/Crown Graphic bellows came from. I've bought lens boards and various other bits from them including Fresnel lenses - one for y Yashicamat 124 but I put it in my Microcord instead.

Ian
 

David M

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I've also bought from these people and everything has been satisfactory. I can't speak for the bellows specifically.
 

David M

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This might be useful.
I've not used it myself, so I'm only the messenger. It might not be enough for really bad cases where replacement is the answer.

 
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