Size matters.

September 5, 2007

Ebay is a wonderful thing. But you have to be patient. After trying for nearly a year, I finally got my hands on an 8×10 (10×8 for those overseas) camera in decent condition for a reasonable price.

Seneca View Camera in the black ebonized finish with nickel plated hardware.

It may have been modified or possibly had parts replaced as the lensboard clips match the catalog drawing but not the photographs of the smaller full plate on the above web page. Also, at some point, the rear rail was installed using a hinge. The rear rail also has a rather serious split on one edge. This split has allowed one of the gear tracks to “lift” a bit and so causes some trouble when moving the rear standard.  A little gentle cleaning and gluing is in order.

For field work, the rear rail isn’t particularly necessary but to get greater extensions for portrait work, it is needed. So my guess is that this was used in a portrait studio or at least by somebody more interested in portrait work with long bellows extension.

Bellows seems OK but needs to be tested.

Next step is to acquire a lens. I got three 8×10 holders at a very reasonable price from a guy in Texas (Jeremy on apug.org  and the Texas Church Project).

Meanwhile I’ve got some lens elements coming from Edmund Optics to experiment with building a simple landscape lens ala “Primitive Photography”.


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