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Travelling with a Graphic

 
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Baker



Joined: 08 Apr 2002
Posts: 85
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 4:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Next weekend my fiancee and I are flying to upstate New York to her sister's wedding. Since I'm a professional photographer and my fiancee is learning photography, her parents are paying for the plane tickets (and film and other expenses) in exchange for us doing the wedding photos. To make things easier, we'll be travelling light, only taking two small bags each (one of which, a Jeep diaper bag, will double as the camera bag for the Graphic) so we don't have to check any luggage.

How much trouble is it to take a Speed Graphic on an airliner nowadays, with the increased security and all? Is it worth the effort* to try to carry it with me, or should I just FedEx it to her parents' house and have it there when we arrive? The fiancee works at Kinko's, so we get a substantial employee discount if we do decide to ship it; on the other hand we're at the mercies of FedEx regarding its arrival on time and in one piece.

Plus, if we ship it, that leaves room in the suitcase to bring back yummy Yankee treats like apple cider donuts!


*"No, really, it's a camera. The suspicious-looking metal tube is the flash. Hey, why are you putting on latex glov--- "
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Sjixxxy



Joined: 27 Apr 2004
Posts: 108
Location: Midwest US

PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 5:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had no problems flying my B&J to Portland Or last August. Just stuffed it into the laptop compartment of my carry-on backpack and away I went. Took a fresh box of film that didn't have the seals broken, and taped them back up with cellophane tape for the return trip. Threw it in a clear ziplock with my rolls of 35mm and had them hand inspect it. No problems either way. They didn't even stop to open up the bag for a "What the hell is that item?" search like I normally get when I run my bag of 35mm equipment through.

I was kind of hoping that they would have taken it out and asked me to power it on.

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t.r.sanford



Joined: 10 Nov 2003
Posts: 812
Location: East Coast (Long Island)

PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 5:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't flown with a "Speed Graphic" for 25 years or so, but I did it a lot in the very early '70s, during the first round of heightened concern over security. I never had a problem that couldn't be resolved by complying with friendly requests to open the camera, and perhaps take the lens or the focusing panel off to show that nothing was inside. Now that they X-ray everything, the situation should be even less alarming.

That said, most people don't need any more stuff to haul around, and I have fantasized about shipping my equipment (of whatever size and format) so I can just pick it up at the far end, and not worry about leaving it in a restroom or under the seat of an airliner.

I once did have a thought-provoking discussion with a cabin attendant, who claimed that the "Speed Graphic" was an extra piece of hand baggage, in excess of the allowable maximum. I was able to persuade her that it is a camera, not a small piece of luggage, and so permissible. We parted friends.
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Baker



Joined: 08 Apr 2002
Posts: 85
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We went ahead and shipped it today. We sent the whole kit, with the camera, flash, 2 boxes of bulbs, Grafmatic and several film holders. Ended up being 2 boxes (one 18" cube and one about a 12x10x15) at 25 pounds (!) total weight. Cost $30 for 2-day.

We'll be carrying the 35mm kit and my digital point-and-shoot on the plane.
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I took a Crown graphic, 3 lenses, two boxes of readyload film and a tripod with me to Hawaii.

The only hiccup was the tripod. We ended up checking that so the backpack full of camera stuff would fit in the overhead compartment.

I had to explain that even though it was 100 speed film, it was pro film and we would be going through lots of screenings. They always hand inspected it.

Two years ago I went to Idaho on a photographic safari. That time I shipped everything ahead, ( a 5x7, 14 holders, tripod, etc.) had only one oversized briefcase with me with the lenses. In this case I always got hit with a search as they didn't know what those cylindrical things were, and since there was no camera around I can see why. Never a real problem once I told them where they were (in the case ) and they pulled it out.

It was a lot easier traveling that way than with a 35 pound pack on my back.

Les
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Press25



Joined: 28 May 2003
Posts: 13
Location: Minneapolis,MN

PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2005 6:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All,
I am heading to La Vegas for a June wedding and will be taking my Mini speed with Flash Syncronizer and a good supply of bulbs. I have never traveled with this camera on a plane and by reading others's experiences it looks like it's a tossup between carry on or to ship. I am not too keen on shipping and want my equipment with me.
Will it be ok to carry onboard or do you think that there will be too much hassle explaining what a flashbulb is for?

Not sure if I want to shoot B\W or color but the lights of Vegas scream color. Has anyone used a Graphic in Vegas and can you give me some tips? I will be there for 5 days, shooting candids at a wedding and lots of other opportunities I am sure.

Thanks,
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