Sinar International Rental System markings

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by timothy_blomquist|1, Aug 13, 2014.

  1. I own both a Sinar F from the early '80s and Wisner 8x10 Technical Field from the late 80s. I have found a Sinar P in the local camera shop that has interesting markings. Most Sinar cameras are marked: "Sinar Swiss Made". This nearly mint Sinar P is marked: "Sinar International Rental System" on both the front and rear standards. I have never seen this before. Any idea about this and what years did Sinar mark their cameras as such? I do intend to buy this camera.
  2. Very likely not a matter of "when did Sinar mark their cameras as such" but of finding a regular Sinar camera that was put into a rental program (and was rebadged to reflect ownership - a "this is our's" tag) somewhere so photographers did not have to haul their large and heavy equipment around the world.<br>As an ex-rental camera, it may have been abused a bit (people never are as careful with other people's gear than with their own). But as a rental camera it will also have been serviced more than other cameras.
  3. Here are some photos for reference. The camera is actually in great condition. It looks like normal Sinar branding except for the additional classification. Doesn't look like a store or rental house did this. I have e-mailed Sinar in Switzerland to see if they have any information about this series of branded cameras.
  4. It is a camera sold to a dealer at a special reduced price for use in their rental business. No special deal.
  5. My concern that such a branded camera for the rental market was a factory second with defects, or even worse some kind of knock-off forgery manufactured in the far East somewhere.
  6. If so (and i don't think it is), Sinar P cameras are not hard to find and you could pass on this one and get another.
  7. Nonsense, it is a new camera sold by the distributor at a special price for rental by either a rental dealer or a camera store. Linhof, Hasselblad, Rollei, etc. all offered these programs at one time or another. Sinar, and some others marked the cameras as rental. Others did not.
    It would be stupid for a manufacturer or a distributor to sell seconds or defective cameras for rental. If the rental cameras do not function properly under rental conditions it would seriously impact the camera's reputation as a professional tool.
    In fact, the cameras sold as rental cameras may have undergone extra inspections to make sure that they are not defective or have other problems.
    The problem with purchasing a rental camera as a user is that it probably has had more use and probably had been treated rougher then a photographer's own equipment.
    When you rent a car do you treat it the same as your own car? If the car is supposed to be filled with premium do you put in regular?
    This is simply a camera sold to be a rental camera. Stop trying to make it into something it isn't.
  8. Bob, thanks for your insight. I did buy the camera and have been checking it out this weekend. I am surprised at how new this Sinar looks. Movements are all smooth and the lack of scratches and markings indicate it was not used very much. Maybe I got lucky and actually found an interesting gem in the Sinar line, despite the markings. I got it for $1000 with the Sinaron (Rodenstock) 210 Apo-Sironar N lens. The lens is also in excellent shape.
    Now I have to decide. I have a 1984 Sinar marked Schneider Symmar-S in near mint shape I have used over the years. I now have a barely used Sinaron (Rodenstock) Apo-Sironar N in the same focal length. Should I sell one or keep them both? Will have to do some test shots to see if I can see a difference.
  9. Logic dictates that you should sell one. Having said that, I confess I rarely sell a lens once it's in my hot little clutches, so I tend to accumulate.
    If you test them side by side, you may see a difference either way, but they're both top-notch multicoated plasmats and they should be very close in performance. If you ask a brand fanboy, or a salesman, you may get a different answer. The same question was discussed a couple of years ago here.
    Having said all that, lens 'quality' probably doesn't matter a hell of a lot for most purposes; this image was taken with one cell of a Goerz Dagor, and then the negative was underdeveloped (exhausted developer). Most people would agree it didn't suffer too badly.
  10. Sorry. Of course, I meant this image. The one I originally linked to was a latter-day reenactment.
  11. The Rodenstock is at least a decade newer. Sell the older one.
  12. "My concern that such a branded camera for the rental market was a factory second with defects."

    I understand your concern and that you have already purchased it., but if anything the reverse would be true, as Sinar
    would want people who are renting it to be very impressed with the quality of manufacturing.

    The one thing that surprises me is that the rear function carrier -the portion between the monorail and the ground glass
    frame -is not the heavier duty version Sinar made for 8x10 users.
  13. "then the negative was underdeveloped (exhausted developer). Most people would agree it didn't suffer too badly."

    Are you familiar with the work of John Sexton? John was Ansel Adams last assistant and is very fine photographer in his
    own right. When he was working on his "Places of Power" portfolio and book he discovered that if he used a very diluted
    TMax developer with TMax 100 film and stretched out the development times it produced a very extended contrast range
    with details much further up into the highlights (the densest portions) of the negative than with regular dilutions. In effect
    he was letting the developer quickly exhaust itself in those areas while staying active in the thinner (less dense) areas of
    the negatives.
  14. Why would it be an 8x10" standard, Ellis?<br>4x5" Sinars need 4x5" standards. And if you want you can use an 8x10" frame on a 4x5" standard without worries. The other way round is a bit more difficult.
  15. I used to shoot with an 8x10 Sinar C. Back in the early 90s I sold the bellows and back, but kept the heavy 8x10 standard and frame. Now it is very difficult to find a good used 8x10 back that is not trashed. Also the ones you find are the metering back (462.580). If I decide to use this as an 8x10 again, I had better start cruising eBay or other sources.
  16. Ellis, yes, I know and appreciate John Sexton's work. What you are describing sounds like regular stand developing with a dilute developer, in order to tame the contrast, correct?
    I think my story about the exhausted developer came from one of Adams's books. As I recall, he came back from a trip in the mountains with a big pile of sheet film to develop. He was tired and I guess he got a bit careless, and he allowed his developer to get worn out a bit. He didn't do it deliberately, and I don't think he was extending his development time.
    I'm sure it helped that Adams was the consummate darkroom printer, and was able to drag that final image out of what was probably a muddy low-contrast negative.
  17. "Why would it be an 8x10" standard, Ellis?
    4x5" Sinars need 4x5" standards. And if you want you can use an 8x10" frame on a 4x5" standard without worries. The
    other way round is a bit more difficult."


    There are two parts to the "rear standard" for a Sinar P or C : the upper part is the frame to which the bellows and ground
    glass assembly attaches, and the lower part, the function carrier, which has the two tilt movements ( base tilt at the
    monorail height, and the asymmetric tilt just below where the removable frame attaches to the function carrier), asymmetric swing and rise/fall movements, along with the Sinar depth of field and tilt/ swing calculator on the focus knobs.

    The original rear function carrier came in two versions: the standard one which could be used for 4x5, 5x7, or 8x10 work but
    there was also a heavier duty version with less rise and stronger gearing for 8x10 work. I know both versions very well.
    The differences were meant for the greater amount of torque when large swing and tilt movements were used in
    commercial product photography.

    There was a short lived Sinar model, the Sinar X, which had a 4x5 frame permanently mounted to the function carrier.

    The question has been brought up about metering and non-metering backs. Except the option to use a Sinar probe to be
    spot meter nearly anywhere at the film plane - eliminating the need to calculate bellows and exposure factors as well as
    ensuring that the contrast range of the photo was within four stops ( the contrast range of most offset press printing
    methods) - there is no functional difference.
  18. "Ellis, yes, I know and appreciate John Sexton's work. What you are describing sounds like regular stand developing with
    a dilute developer, in order to tame the contrast, correct?"

    Similar but as I recall he was doing regular agitation patterns, at least at first.
  19. Ellis, i am quite familiar with Sinar cameras.<br>The question is why you are surprised that a 4x5" camera has a 4x5" camera rear standard.
  20. Because it was part of their rental program. I'd expect it to be set up with the heavier function carrier.
  21. It would have been good if Timothy is planning to attach an 8x10" frame, Ellis.<br>But having an 8x10" standard on a 4x5" camera means (besides being more expensive) almost 40% less shift on the rear standard (it does mean that using an 8x10" frame too, of course, but then lowering the frame is a must. You would still want the same size shift range, but you can't get lower than the bank rail allows). And it offers no advantage to outweigh that disadvantage.
  22. I am actually thinking of using this camera from time to time as an 8x10. If you see my other thread, I have another 8x10 rear standard (T shaped), but it doesn't have swings or tilts. The format frame with it is an 8x10, but apparently of an older style which is the wrong size for a metering back and bellows. So, I have to find a non-metering 8x10 back and bellows, and those seem to be difficult to locate.
    Sinar really confused things when the introduced the MB feature which kind of invalidated their past marketing claims of interchangeability within their system.
  23. On 4x5", all the regular fittings fit metering backs and non metering backs alike.<br>I saw the 8x10" standard and frame in that other thread. I must say i don't know it, or what it was for, so i can't say anything about what will or will not fit. Sinar 8x10" conversion kits aren't rare on auction sites like eBay. But expensive they are.

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