View Full Version : Large format DIY

17-01-08, 18:23
Has anyone tackled building a large format (5*4) camera. I am at present sourcing components to build a Shen Hao look-a-like. The awkward items are the bellows and ground glass focusing screen, the rest I can do.
Like to know of any pitfalls one might encounter.
Any problems developing black and white sheet film?


17-01-08, 20:57
Hi Pete - I hope you have received the links I emailed - http://www.cyberbeach.net/~dbardell/bellows.html and http://www.instructables.com/id/bellows-for-large-format-camera/ for any others who are interested. You used to be able to buy a black paint for bellows which you can still get - here is a link to some ideas http://photo.net/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg?msg_id=003dHm
The main problem you will face is getting an enlarger that will take a 5" x 4" negative - assuming you want to do more than contact prints - Your best bet is the type of camera shop where some old gent has one tucked away in the back gathering dust - like I did until 4 years ago - mine was passed to a local photographic club - and that could be a source for you.

18-01-08, 20:59
Many thanks Andy. Great info on those links. Was going to order a pro job for the bellows but might have a go myself now.
Any thoughts on light seal. I see quoted 'open cell' and 'closed cell' material either self stick or non self stick. Not sure which would be best.
Thicknesses vary from 1mm to 3 and 5mm. I would imagine 1mm for small components and 3 for the larger. Does this stuff compress easily.
Once again, Many thanks.