Looking for a handholdable 8x10

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by harry_zet, Mar 13, 2007.

  1. i want to try one to make contact-prints- could also be a homemade camera. is anything like that
  2. www.fotomancamera.com
  3. I used the 8x10 Hobo w/120mm Nikkor SW for about a year. It was basically a fixed focus
    'point-n-shoot'. If you're at all handy at woodworking (I'm not) you can easily put one
    together yourself.

  4. The main things you need for a hand-holdable 8x10 are moderately light weight and a fast enough shutter so that you don't see the effects of tremble. I have an 8x10 Century Universal with a Graflex focal plane shutter that might fill the bill. It's a self-cased design like the Speed Graphic. With the focal plane shutter I can get down to 1/1000 second exposure time using barrel lenses. I suspect you would want to use short focal length wide angle lenses so that you don't have a lot of bellows extension. Probably something in the range of 210mm to 240mm. I have a 210mm Symmar that I know covers 6 1/2 x 8 1/2 because I've tried it. I think the tables say it will just barely cover 8x10. I also have a 240mm Schneider Componon that will surely cover 8x10. I've been tempted to try using it this way (i.e., hand holding it), and just haven't gotten around to trying it. In effect this would be a giant Speed Graphic. Note that the original 1903 Graflex SLR's came in 6 1/2 x 8 1/2 (full plate) and 8x10 sizes, and they were meant to be hand held. I have a 5x7 Auto Graflex SLR and a 5x7 Press Graflex SLR. It's not hard to hand-hold either of them. The Press Graflex shutter will go down to 1/1500 second. I also have a 5x7 Speed Graphic with a shutter that goes to 1/1000 second. If you want to make gigantic prints and can be satisfied with the small number of 5x7 films available today you might try the 5x7 Graflex (SLR or Speed Graphic) route. I think it's more practical than going to 8x10. With the limited facilities in my darkroom I can't make an enlargement big enough so that I can tell the difference in quality between a print made from a 5x7 negative and one made from an 8x10. If you're really certain that you want to do 8x10 contact prints (as you said in your question) that's another matter, and then you're forced to go to the 8x10 camera. However, if you have the space note that 5x7 Elwoods are cheap, I got mine for $5 a couple years ago from someone who just wanted to get it out of his way.
  5. There is also the good old pinhole cameras. Fotoman and Hobo's are excellent as well. Go to pinholeresource.com for info about pinhole cameras that size. Eric is a great guy for giving suggestions.
  6. Unfortunately I'm not an illustrator - but that question of "hand held 8 x 10 " made me
    think of a one panel cartoon I once thought of - and you can picture it, based on the caption:

    "Before going on to landscapes, Ansel Adams photographed weddings."

    Fill in your own vision of what THAT would've looked like.......
  7. Matt, I think I can visualize the joke, but Adams used many different cameras, including some that would be good for weddings and events (Graflex reflex, Hasselblad, Leica R). It's a common misconception that he worked only in big sheets. A lot of his late work was made with the Hasselblad.
  8. Oh I knew that - It's just that the large format stuff is what most people ( including non-
    photographers ) associate with him. Just a joke, after all.
  9. Pardon my asking, as the answer is not at all obvious to me, but, why on earth would you want to hand-hold an 8X10 camera in the first place?
  10. i want to use it as sort of giant leica - the fotoman looks promising

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