material to make lens boards

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by joseph_zarick, Nov 9, 2001.

  1. Please discuss some of the materials I can use to make lens boards for my Zone VI 4x5 (4" square". j zarick, cincinnati Ohio
     
  2. Joe:

    <p>

    You can use wood, metal, or plastic. Wood is probably easier to cut,
    drill, and finish but may be subject to warping. To help overcome this
    problem, I use 1/8 sheets of plywood which are available from
    Rockler.com. The plywood comes in walnut, cherry, birch, red oak, and
    white oak and costs from $11-25 depending on the type of wood. Each
    sheet is 24x32 inches. I normally use an exacto or utility knife to
    cut the plywood. This insures a clean and exact cut and is generally
    safer than using a table saw or bandsaw. I also use a drill press and
    forstner bits to cut holes for the lens. You can also use a hand-held
    power drill.

    <p>

    ..........................
     
  3. Joe

    <p>

    When making homemade boards I have used an opaque material by the
    name of "Lexan". This is very comparable to plexiglass but I find it
    a more rigid product and easier to work with. I just use my router to
    make the edges to match my requirements and then drill the
    appropriate hole and seating hole for my shutter size. The Lexan I
    use is black in color, very robust and will not warp or change size
    due to heat or cold. I visited a local shop that uses Lexan for
    production and for a few dollars they gave me 10 pieces of scrap that
    were about 7 inches square. This is a nice material to use but you do
    need power tools to perform the necessary tasks.

    <p>

    Regards
     
  4. Another Zone VIer out of the closet!!

    <p>

    Home depot has 1/4 X 6" X 2, 4 or 6 feet long hardwoods that have a
    very pretty grain. You would need to have the ability to make them
    very similar to the originals with grains going in opposing directions
    to prevent warping.
     
  5. I haven't actually used this for lensboards, but it should work like
    a charm. Go to the local plastics supplier and ask for
    black "Sintra". It's an expanded PVC material common in the sign
    industry. Cuts easily and can be planed and sanded like a soft wood.
    Quite stable. Comes in even mm thicknesses. Made by Alusuisse
    Composites, Inc.
     
  6. I use the thin plywood available at model shops. It is five or seven
    layers of very thin veneer and is strong and stable.

    <p>

    REgards,
     
  7. In a pinch you can easily make a lens board using mat board. Cut to
    size & tape two or more together for reinforcement. For more
    permanent boards the comments above this one are good.
     
  8. I've used the "hobby board" to which Doug Paramour refers for
    Deardorff boards and it works great. For the Deardorff, I used two
    layers to get the "double-corner" that helps to keep out light. If
    the board isn't quite thick enough for your camera, you can use some
    felt to make it more snug. This will give you a tighter seal.

    <p>

    If you have a wood camera, you can usually do a pretty good job of
    matching the color of the camera using those small cans of stain.
     
  9. I've been using 1/8" aluminum tooling plate for lensboards, most
    recently for a Calumet 4x5. Aluminum can be cut/machined easily
    using CARBIDE-TIPPED wodworking tools.
     
  10. Ok, here's another material I've used: fiberglass circuit board from
    Radio Shack. It is copper on both sides to add rigidity and make it
    light tight. It can be worked with common tools. It is about the
    right thickness for Wista type boards. I made a pinhole holder with
    this for my Tachihara. The copper also tarnishes for a nice look.
     
  11. Try the clipboards available at any OfficeMax or Staples. You can find masonite or black plastic. You can also find 3in or 4in wide plywood at craft stores like Michaels and JoAnnes.
     
  12. I recently made a bunch of lensboards for an old Linhof Tech II (which apparently can't take later Linhof boards) using 3/32 birch ply of the sort described above, available from hobby shops for building models. I cut it with an X-acto saw, beveled the edges with a Dremel and router table attachment, and cut the holes with a keyhole saw that attaches to a drill. To get a clean hole, I used three clamps to hold the board firmly to the work table with a piece of scrap 4x4" between the board and the table. I stained them with a dark walnut stain to reduce internal reflections. On a couple of them, I made the beveled edge a hair too thin, so I glued a strip of black flocking into the bevel, and they fit perfectly.
    004FQW-10679184.jpg
     

Share This Page

1111