Getting There..

RobMac

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It has taken me a few weeks, but I'm almost ready to take pictures. Intrepid 5x4 Black Edition with Nikkor 210 5.6. The lens came with a board that was too thick for the camera, so I got Intrepid to send me a suitable board. The ring was too tight to remove on the original board, so I had to source a double screw-driver for that. Worked like a dream. The lens is on, everything seems to move as it should.

I have a Calumet Medium-Format holder for my first shots - cheaper when making mistakes - and Toyo holders for when I move on to sheet film.

What I don't have is a dark cloth and a loupe. Advice on both warmly received, thank you.
 
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Ian Grant

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It's easy to make a darkc-loth, in my case I just cut up some old velvet curtain and dyed it black. You can just go buy some velvet and get the edges sewn up, fisherman's weights sewn into the corners helps stop them flapping around.

I don't use a loupe, they don't work as well with a fresnel screen and the Wista combination fresnel screen is very bright and easy to focus with, also I'm tending to use my Super Graphic more which has a focus hood so needs no dark-cloth.

Ian
 

mpirie

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It might be worth buying a lens spanner instead of screwdrivers for removing the ring.....just in case they slip and...... ;-(

Plenty of them on the auction site.

Mike
 

James T

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Loupe needs are, I think, very dependent on your focusing ranges (your eyes not your camera in this case).
I wear distance glasses, so I find that for me a pair of flip-up modellers clip-on magnifying lenses[*] in combination with a Matin DSLR screen loupe (which was wholly useless for its intended purpose) works well. The Matin has two advantages over the Hoodman (1) it has a 2x magnification and (2) it's much cheaper.

[*] It was only after I'd started using them that I saw a photo of Ansel Adams using the same solution (though obviously not with a DSLR loupe).
 

David M

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Making one yourself, of having a friend with the skills is the best way. Instead of fisherman's weights, try those tubes of fabric with small slugs of lead that are used to weigh down curtains. Any curtain shop will stock them and they come in different sizes. You can control the whole edge of the cloth and not just the corners.

Intrepid sell cloths in matching colours, or you could try here:


You'll see they have all sorts of stuff for the discerning LF photographer. The price is higher than when I bought mine. but that's due to external factors that we'd better not discuss in an intelligent and polite forum. My advice would be to buy now, buy quickly.

Don't have the black side outside. It becomes very uncomfortable indeed under the sun, very quickly.

Almost any old loupe will do until you're clear on what your eyes want. A cheap folding linen tester, perhaps, or even a Sherlockian magnifying glass. You may find, as I do, that what looks in focus to the naked eye is not quite the same when viewed under a loupe. The general consensus seems to be that 4x to 6x is about right. Some people use magnifying glasses but they make my neck ache.
The best ones are staggeringly expensive.
 

RobMac

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Martin - I wouldn't have thought of that in a million years. Thanks for the idea.
 

Ian Grant

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Old British LF SLR cameras used sort of close up glasses that rested on the top of the focus hood, rather like a stereo loupe. My Rolleiflex E2 TLR has changeable focussing Diotres it's the same but mocular. Jewellers use a jewellers loupe that is stereo, but they aren't cute but may work well.

Poundland and cheap glasses just for LF focussing is our modern equivalent :D

Ian
 
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