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i'm a beginner!!!

 
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sobahguy



Joined: 09 Oct 2001
Posts: 171
Location: Massachusetts

PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2001 1:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi....i'm just getting going with my crown graphic now that i have a few basic pieces of gear. i have the camera,flash,120 roll film holder (6x6) which is spacing well, have a dozen 4x5 film holders & 50 sheets of plus-x pan film. i also have darkroom time doing 35mm & medium format which i just started doing again last spring after a few years of inactivity, so i'm pretty good with all of this. i'm wondering if someone might be able to give me some good starting pointers in regard to using the camera & getting decent exposure i.e. shutter speeds & apertures for different conditions, including indoor flash & outdoor fill flash. the camera has a rapax wollensak 135mm f/4.7 lens. i've never used a manual camera such as the crown and the thing fascinates me. i also have a sheet film developing tank with room slots enough for 12 sheets. what do i use to hang the negatives to dry them since there is little room between the edge of the image & the edge of the negative. and what chemistry is recommended for the plus-x film based on your experiences? i don't as yet have a 4x5 enlarger but have a lead on one. i know i have packed this post with quite a bit but any suggestions on generalities would be appreciated to get me going then i can no doubt experiment & deviate from that. thanks in advance.
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Les



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

PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2001 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One rule of thumb for manual cameras is the SAFE method. Shutter- Aperture-Focus-Exposure.

You'll need a lightmeter, your 35mm camera will suffice for a while, just set the film speed the same, take a reading and transfer the shutter/apertures to the Crown.


A drying rack can be as simple as screwing several snap type clothes pins to either a 1x2 or a handy joist in the basement. If you have access to Stainless steel film clips, these can be hung on a wire.(The clothes pins can be strung too, but you'll need to drill holes in the wood.)
The trick is to pinch the film in a corner and let it drip, also the film needs to be 90 to the wire to keep the sheets from touching each other.

As to processing, check the kodak website for developers for Plus X. D76 works well. Also if you are using a yankee tank, I've found it best to have all of your chemicals measured ahead of time. Pull the rack and pour the developer into the yankee tank. In the dark,load the film in the rack then set it in the developer and start the timer, put the lid on and turn the lights back on, and process normally from there.

This will eliminate uneven developement streaks and a lot of air bells too.

You might want to look into buying a later edition of Graphic Graflex Photography. (9th or 10th) It was the bible that started most of the Post WWII photo studios in the US.
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crvogt



Joined: 23 May 2001
Posts: 27
Location: Rochester, NY

PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2001 11:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you do not have a hand held meter, (you should get one ASAP) you can use the old rule of thumb. On a bright sunny day no clouds set the shutter speed for the ASA film speed ( Plus X speed 125) an use F16 for the f stop. Remember a bright sunny day is a "magic f16 day", for hazy sun f11 with distinct shadows, if there are clouds no shadows f8, heavy overcast 5.6, open shade f4. This came from the "Kodak Master Photoguide" older book (1968) you should have one in your graflex case. Also has tables for fill flash and a whole lot more.
the newer one is the "Kodak Pocket Guide"
The flash is another story will you use flash bulbs or is it an electronic flash?
The "Master Photoguide" has a dial calculator for various types of flash bulbs and electrionic flash.
Hope this helps




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Carl

Carl@carlvogt.com
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3208
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2001 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When metering for bellows type cameras one should compensate for bellows extension. Lens focal length from film plane...use meter reading direct... if donig closeup work increase exposure by equivelent amount of extension...90mm focused 135mm from film plane increase exposure 1/2 stop.
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sobahguy



Joined: 09 Oct 2001
Posts: 171
Location: Massachusetts

PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2001 1:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks,carl...
as far as the flash is concerned i'm using a sunpak 522 electronic side-mount flash which i have just got going after getting a cord from paramount. i'm thinking that the flash should synch w/all shutter speeds so it may well be a matter of following the basic guides with the flash unit. does this sound right??? i'm thinking first of all i might shoot a roll of 120 with the "22" back & see what happens. thanks again for the help!!!
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2001 2:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When shooting at "normal" distances, there's no real need to factor bellows extension; it's only when you start getting in close that this comes into play.

The "magic 16" rule someone quoted is a tried and true method, one I have used many times when a meter wasn't handy, but given my druthers, I'll have a meter just to be completely on the safe side. Sheet film is too expensive to be wasting it needlessly. (I waste enough of it on bad composition to add to the waste with bad exposures.)

I use a Sunpak 622 on my Speed Graphic, and other than making for a really HEAVY rig, it works great using a Paramount cord. I keep the flash in automatic mode outdoors: meter the scene and set the camera for the exposure, then set the flash for the same auto f-stop. It works great as fill on those f11 and f16 days.
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crvogt



Joined: 23 May 2001
Posts: 27
Location: Rochester, NY

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2001 12:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You are right the shutter should sync on X for electronic flash, at all shutter speeds.
I usually set it at a safe 1/125 an leave it there most of the time.
Use the recomendations from your Sunpack manual for the Automatic Flash exposures.
I am still in the old days, with my Graflex maual Electronic flashes where you use the GN (Guide Number) dividing the GN by the flash to subject distance to get the f stop. The Graflex units have a dial calculator to help you do this. Most of us old timers learned the exposure distances for a given film and just knew where to set the f stop.
I still don't trust auto strobes, guess i am just an old fuddy duddy...


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Carl

Carl@carlvogt.com
http://www.carlvogt.com
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2001 12:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know how to use guide numbers but prefer not to worry with them when I'm trying to shoot fast. I use flash seldom enough, and when I do it's either metered with my Sekonic L508 or on full automatic.
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