Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

A place to talk about photography, the meaning of life and anything that doesn't quite fit elsewhere
Dave Tolcher

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by Dave Tolcher » Fri May 24, 2013 10:10 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

This might help: ... 61385.html

The ground glass should definitely be closest to the lens but I wonder whether you are missing a cover glass.

Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 11:50 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by Nomad » Sat May 25, 2013 1:27 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

I think the cover glass thing is to do with protecting the Fresnel side of the aftermarket Fresnel sandwich thing. Anyway, I took some depth measurements with a digital caliper, from the frame to the glass, and from the frame to an empty film holder with the dark slide out, and got a match (accounting for film thickness) to the glass surface towards the lens. So the inner surface is the plane of focus and I've now reversed the glass.

Maybe it was fitted incorrectly at the factory, or maybe the previous owner had changed to one of the GG+Fresnel things and put the original GG back in back to front when it came time to sell the camera.

Forum Hero
Posts: 614
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2008 11:36 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00
Location: Sheffield

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by dave_whatever » Sat May 25, 2013 6:40 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

As far as I know Shen hao's have never come with cover glass since they don't come with a fresnel, so sounds like someone had just reversed the glass on yours. Maybe they liked slightly out of focus images.

Forum Hero
Posts: 472
Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:40 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00
Location: Leeds, West Yorkshire

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by timparkin » Tue May 28, 2013 9:27 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Some information for anyone reading this and researching Ebony cameras and Chamonix cameras.

In the wet the Ebony can lock up and it can be very difficult to unlock it. Judicious use of a screwdriver does mitigate this somewhat but at some point (two days into a trip to Ardnamurchan with constant rain) the standards were so loose they had a permanent plus or minus 20 degrees tilt on each (variable depending on how you balance/touch them).

At this point nothing will help apart from a good few hours drying out - in our case a hotel room for an evening and overnight. Saying that - once you've been in the rain that long water will probably have got between the cover glass and the fresnel/ground glass and turned the whole thing transparent.

The Ebony is a wonderful camera but isn't the perfect all weather device.

Regarding the Chamonix, the body of the camera is made from quality wood and the base is laminated with carbon fibre sheet. This sheet acts to increase the torsional resistance of the camera base. The focussing mechanism is sold block that sits on a worm drive and hence does not suffer from wood expansion and subsequent binding.

Waiting for the developing bill - 2 hours (and it's so small now!)

Andrew Plume
Forum Hero
Posts: 617
Joined: Sun May 30, 2010 3:28 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00
Location: North Oxon

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by Andrew Plume » Sat Jun 29, 2013 9:51 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00


xchrist mate

check out the US based forum this has been discussed to hell and back in the past



there's plenty of info, if not too much info over on there

just buy a cheapo mate and have a play

David Loney
Posts: 21
Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:56 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00
Location: Bury St Edmunds

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by David Loney » Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:46 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Have you considered an MPP Mk V11 or Mk V111 not your wood and brass but sturdy field camera?

Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:06 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by welly » Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:44 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

While I realise it's a bit late in the conversation, I would have added the Toyo 45AX/AII to the list. It's not wood and brass and not that "pretty" a camera (although it's not unattractive!) it is an absolutely fantastic camera and handles pretty much anything I can throw at it, or being as it's all metal - throw it at. I can use a lens down to 47mm (not that I've tried and I guess without movements) but with 90mm I have TONS of movements and I believe even down to around 65mm you still get some movements. You have 320mm extension out of the box and with the extension back - 420mm extension. It's a solid, accurate and versatile camera, which I can carry around all day, and had I known what I know now, I'd not have gone through a Sinar F2, a Cambo and a couple of wooden field cameras, pretty though they were!

Toyo fan-boy.

Forum Hero
Posts: 258
Joined: Mon Aug 14, 2006 3:39 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00
Location: Devon, UK

Re: Seeking Field Camera Suggestions

Post by dennis » Fri Sep 27, 2013 8:31 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

I can confirm the above. It will take a 55mm lens with the short 'wide-angle' lens panel, & still allow a little movement. Dennis.

Post Reply