Graflex.org Forum Index Graflex.org
Get help with your Graflex questions here
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Different versions of he Grafmatic.

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Graflex.org Forum Index -> Accessories Help
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Stephen Furley



Joined: 11 May 2001
Posts: 79
Location: London, England

PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 11:09 pm    Post subject: Different versions of he Grafmatic. Reply with quote

I have four Grafmatics, and all of them are different.

The first seems to be an early version; the Handle on this one is metal. This one is a total wreck, with various parts broken and missing. I bought it very cheaply at a camera collectors' fair because it contained a perfect set of septa, which I thought would prove to be useful in future, as indeed was the case.

The second is very similar, but the handle is plastic. One septum was missing, and most of the others were bent, and so were replaced by those from the first holder.

The third is almost identical to the second, it has the word 'Grafmatic' in the same font, but the Graflex logo is missing. Where the Graflex one says 'MAUUFACTURED BY GRAFLEX'... this one has:

'MADE IN ENGLAND BY WRAY (OPTICAL WORKS) LTD.
LICENCEE OF GRAFLEX INC. USA'

Moulded into the other side is:

'4x5 GRAFMATIC MADE IN ENGLAND BY WRAY
LONDON LICENCEE OF GRAFLEX INC. USA'

Alongside the white labling panel is machine engraved and paint filled an arrow and then 0553, then underneath this AP 162001. The arrow indicates that it was British Government, brobably military, property.

This one is missing the numbering wheel, but I'm hoping to replace it with the one from the first holder. There's also a slight light leak which needs looking at.

The last one seems to be more recent, and again, it is not made by Graflex, and is not even labeled 'Grafmatic'. This one is made by Fuji. it has the FUJI FILM logo, and the words:

'FUJI FILM
SHEET FILM HOLDER
QUICK CHANGER 45'

The '45' is in very large digits.

On the other sode it has:

ยจ4x5 (100x125mm) SHEET FILM HOLDER PAT. PEND.
FUJI PHOTO FILM CO. LTD. TOKYO JAPAN.

No mention of being licenced by Graflex, so I'm guessing that Fuji bought the design after the demise of Graflex.

This holder has something different to any of the others; it has the numbering wheel in the usual position, but lower down are two similar wheels, which can be rotated by hand, after pressing a small latch between them. These wheels can display various letters; the light is very bad in the room where I am, and I can't make out all of them, but I can see S and T on one wheel, and F on the other. Does anybody know what these are for? Did the letters actually stand for anything, or were they just to identify different holders? Did later Graflex-made holders also have these, or were they unique to the Fuji ones?

Has anybody else got any holders made by Wray or Fuji; or any other maker? How common are they compared to the Graflex-made ones?

It's interesting that Fuji used the name 'QUICK CHANGER'; they obviously revived not only the idea, combined with certain aspects of the film pack, but also the name, when they introduced their short-lived 'Quick Change' holder a few years ago. I've got one of those as well.
_________________
Stephen Furley
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
pv17vv



Joined: 22 Dec 2001
Posts: 255
Location: The Ardennes, Belgium

PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://members.optusnet.com.au/~paulewins/resources/grafmatic.htm

Aussie page about Grafmatics
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Stephen Furley



Joined: 11 May 2001
Posts: 79
Location: London, England

PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that. I knew that the version for the Graflex back existed, but I've never seen one.

I didn't know about the 'locking' and 'non-locking' versions. My working Graflex one is of the non-locking type, and therefore I assume that the older broken one is too, but I don't have that here to check, it's on my desk at work. Both the Wray and Fuji made ones that I have are of the locking type.

The printing on my Graflex made one is slightly different to those shown on that site; it has the hexagonal shaped logo, but the catalogue number is not printed on my one.

The Australian site makes no mention of the Wray or Fuji made ones, nor of he extra marking wheels which are on my Fuji one, so I don't know if these were ever fitted to Graflex ones, or were only introduced by Fuji.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2008 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Graflex Corp. Grafmatic has only the frame number wheel.
Model 1168-for Graflex SLR cameras.
Model 1268-For Graphic type cameras.
Site search>grafmatic for the keyword=153 results>
http://graflex.org/helpboard/viewtopic.php?t=563&highlight=grafmatic
http://graflex.org/helpboard/viewtopic.php?t=743&highlight=grafmatic (your simular post from 2002)

Service manuals for the grafmatics are available at http://www.southbristolviews.com/
_________________
The best camera ever made is the one that YOU enjoy using and produces the image quality that satifies YOU.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Les



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

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2008 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I counted 10 variations on Grafmatic labels. The early ones don't have the catalog number, later versions are locking, and it seems the Graflex version had the locking feature earlier than the Graphic version which doesn't make sense as only the frame is different.

Wray was an official licensee of Graflex, though I can't quite figure out when.
It could be they were licensed early on, near the intro date. BTW This is one of the few products that was designed by an outside source and offered to Graflex. The original design was in 3x4, the only format Graflex didn't make on in. Also the 2x3 version came out about a year before the 4x5.

Kindermann copied the Grafmatic design and added a couple of sheets to either 8 or 10.

Fuji's foray into "drawer type" film holders was in the last 10 years, long after any trademarks or patents had expired.
_________________
"In order to invent, you need a good imagination and a lot of junk" Thomas Edison
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Stephen Furley



Joined: 11 May 2001
Posts: 79
Location: London, England

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2008 8:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

45PSS,

I've downloaded the service manual; I hope to be able to use it to repair my Wray one. The manual is dated 1964, and has the Graflex General Precision logo, but still has photohraphs of the older holder, not the one labeled 'Graflex General Precision', as in the one shown on the Australian site.

Do you know when Graflex ceased production of the Grafmatic? Were any ever produced with the 'Singer Graflex label?

Quote:
Kindermann copied the Grafmatic design and added a couple of sheets to either 8 or 10.

Fuji's foray into "drawer type" film holders was in the last 10 years, long after any trademarks or patents had expired.


Les,

How did Kindermann accommodate the extra sheets, was it by thinner septa, or a thicker holder. How similar was this device to the Grafmatic, was it just similar in general principle, or almost identical, apart from the increased capacity?
_________________
Stephen Furley
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Les



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

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2008 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the Kindermann's were a little thicker. I played with one once but it was a few years ago. Here's a pic of all the labels that I know of and have and a few I think exist but never saw one.


_________________
"In order to invent, you need a good imagination and a lot of junk" Thomas Edison
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2008 3:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Les is the expert on the history and manifacturing of the Grafmatics as his last post show. I had a binder of manuals that had the Grafmatic service manuals which I scaned and sent to Rich who put them up on his site. I no longer have the binder but I do have the scans in 48mb tiff per page.
I have 2 type 2; 2 type 4; 1 type 1 or 2 that the label was sanded off and WB 29 put in its place and this pair of, lets say, Type 2A.


_________________
The best camera ever made is the one that YOU enjoy using and produces the image quality that satifies YOU.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Stephen Furley



Joined: 11 May 2001
Posts: 79
Location: London, England

PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2008 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gentleman,

Thank you for the photos, I'll have to compare with the ones that I have.

Did the red 'Graflex inc.' type 8 come after the 'Singer Graflex' type 7? The font looks more modern, but I thought that the 'Singer Graflex' brand was the final version before the demise of Graflex.

How do you go about adding a photo to a post?

I've read the service manual, and I'm going to have a go at fixing my Wray one at the weekend.

FP shutter fixed and rangefinder mirror replaced in Speed Graphic, so now that I'm not working at the cinema almost every weekend I might actually be able to find the time to get out and take a few photographs this year.

Best wishes,

Stephen.
_________________
Stephen Furley
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2008 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Did the red 'Graflex inc.' type 8 come after the 'Singer Graflex' type 7? The font looks more modern, but I thought that the 'Singer Graflex' brand was the final version before the demise of Graflex.
I think the red label graflex products were at the end of the company or the last few years while still under Singer ownership, the Singer Graflex were when Singer took over Graflex from General precision.
Quote:
How do you go about adding a photo to a post?


To post a photo first upload it to a hosting service such as your personal web page at your ISP or one of the many free image hosting services then post the image url code according to the BBCode instructions.
Quote:
I've read the service manual, and I'm going to have a go at fixing my Wray one at the weekend.

What is wrong with your Wray?
_________________
The best camera ever made is the one that YOU enjoy using and produces the image quality that satifies YOU.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Stephen Furley



Joined: 11 May 2001
Posts: 79
Location: London, England

PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a light leak, not a very major one, but enough to make it unusable at the moment, and the numbering wheel is missing. I'm going to try to replace it with the one from the broken holder.

I don't have any proper web space, but I'm going to try to link to a couple of pictures on some temporary space.

The first is a scan of the Fuji Grafmatic.



As you can see, the style of print on it is quite different, and there's no mention of Graflex, or of the word 'Grafmatic'.

The second is a close-up of the other side:



I've put a slip of white paper in it to make the wheels easier to see. The numbering wheel is set to '2', and the two letter ones to 'F' and 'T' These two wheels are not circular, there are notches in the edge to make them easier to turn, and they are released by pressing the rectangular tab between them. Have you seen anything like this before?

I'm pretty sure that this dates from later than any of the other versions of the Grafmatic. Maybe Fuji acquired the rights to the design via Toyo?

My other holders all seem to be identical to ones which Les has posted pictures of. The tatty, broken one is a type 3, the decent Graflex one is a type 2, and the Wray is a type 6. Do you have any idea of the dates when the various versions were introduced, and when the change from 'non-locking' to 'locking' versions was made? It was obviously prior to the publication of the service manual, in 1964.

Here's a link to a page with a photo which I took with the Speed Graphic a few years ago. This was taken at the photographers' evening at Didcot Railway Centre. It was on Fuji RTPII film in a Quickload holder. It's only a low resolution scan, but the detail in the original transparency is incredible. The detail on the right is from a higher resolution scan, but still doesn't bring out all of the detail that is in the original. I think the exposure was about one minute at f11.

http://web.mac.com/srfurley/iWeb/Site/Photos.html
_________________
Stephen Furley
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 1:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you run into difficulties just post a question, I'll be checking in between power outages.
_________________
The best camera ever made is the one that YOU enjoy using and produces the image quality that satifies YOU.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Stephen Furley



Joined: 11 May 2001
Posts: 79
Location: London, England

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you. I think the light leak is now fixed; I've left a sheet of the fastest film I've got in it. I'll leave it there for about a week, then process it, and see if there's any fogging.

I couldn't try to fit the numbering wheel today, as I forgot to bring the 'donor' broken holder home from work last night.

Did you see the pictures of the Fuji Grafmatic with the extra wheels that I posted? Have you seen anything like this before?


Best wishes,

Stephen.
_________________
Stephen Furley
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2008 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes your pictures come thru just fine. I thought about buying a Fuji quick change when they came out a few years ago but they were hard to find here and cost more than the Grafmatics that were more readily available than they are now.
_________________
The best camera ever made is the one that YOU enjoy using and produces the image quality that satifies YOU.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Stephen Furley



Joined: 11 May 2001
Posts: 79
Location: London, England

PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2008 12:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Quickchange was quite different to the Quick Changer/Grafmatic, though it's obvious where they got the idea, and the name, from.

The Quickchange holder was short-lived, it disappeared from Fuji's Japanese site several years ago now, as did the film for it. As far as I know it was only officially sold in Japan, though Robert White privately imported a few into this country, and I think other dealers lid likewise in other countries.

It was basically a metal box, with a hinged cover, rather like an over-sized film pack adapter. It was quite thick, It would just, but only just, fit under the glass on my Pacemaker, and wouldn't fit on several other cameras that I tried; it really needed a Graflok back. It was very nicely made, as was the case it as supplied in. Into this fitted a Quickchange film cartridge, which was basically a pre-loaded, disposable plastic Grafmatic. The two that I have are dated 2002-10, and are both Provia 100F, the only type which Robert White imported; I don't know if any other emulsions were available in Japan. I'll get mine out and take some pictures.

The cartridge held 8 sheets, and came packed in a box just slightly smaller than the ones which Quickload and the later single sheet Readyload packets come in, so it was not exactly a space saver. The cost was high, and it produced a large amount of waste, so was not very environmentally-friendly.

With care, it is possible to re-load the cartridge with normal sheet film, I have re-loaded one about three times, but this was not intended to be done, and I think some of the plastic parts would wear quite quickly. The plastic septa from the Quickchange cartridge will not fit into a Grafmatic; I did try.

It was possible to remove a part-used cartridge from the holder, and replace it with another, so different film types, if they had been available, could be used in the same holder. It was also possible, in a darkroom obviously, to open a part-used cartridge and remove the exposed sheets for processing, as with the old film packs.

It was a nice idea, and very nicely made, but there were several problems with it:

High cost per shot.

Limited film types available.

Environmentally unfriendly.

Difficult, or impossible, to use under the glass, so you need to remove the glass to make each shot. On a press camera you could leave the holder attached and use the viewfinder, but obviously not with a View camera.

Because of this it couldn't be used 'quickly', and large format really isn't about working quickly, is it? At least not since press photographers stopped using it. Since you can't, and probably don't want to, use it quickly, what's the point of a system designed to change sheets quickly?

It took a lot of space, per sheet, more than Grafmatic, Film packs or Quickload/Readyload systems.

Given all of this, I'm not surprised it did not last. I'm glad I got one though, it's an interesting addition to the collection.

An interesting point; The edge printing on Fuji Quickload and Quickchange film is slightly different to their normal sheet film; the Quickload sheets have 'QL' printed on them, and the Quickchange ones have 'QC' so you can tell what type of holder was used. I'm not sure why you'd care, and of course this idea falls over if a Quickchange cartridge is reloaded with normal film,
_________________
Stephen Furley
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Graflex.org Forum Index -> Accessories Help All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group