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Thread: Lotus Cam 9x12

  1. #1

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    The project started with three boxes of 9 x 12 Ilfospeed 2.24M paper (9 cm x 12 cm / 3.5" x 5"), almost 300 sheets of paper. First I used a few sheets in my 9x12 film holders using one of my 4"x5" pinhole cameras. As I have some 9x12 sheet film (Fomapan 100) as well I thought it would be great to have a more compact camera. Finally it developed during the last week in a 9x12 camera system as usual: It starts simple and during the project I want to have more and more features and flexibility.

    Here first an overview about the system:

    - The camera (box type)
    - The storage box for unexposed and exposed paper & sheet film
    - one of the exposure tables
    - a card board with the framing triangle
    - a piece of black paper for the exposure control (my main shutter)
    - 4 pinholes ( 0.28 mm, 0.30 mm, 0.32 mm and 0.35 mm), home-made needle-drilled brass pinholes
    (not in the picture the changing bag)

    The camera has four focal lengthes: 69 mm, 79 mm, 89 mm and 99 mm (135 film format: 20 mm to 28 mm). So I have a wide to a moderate wide angle camera. But the main reason of having these four focal lengthes is the different light sensitivity of graded paper, multigrade paper and sheet film (lambda: 475 nm / 525 nm / 560 nm). By choosing a different focal length I can use the same pinhole size for all kind of papers and sheet film having an optimum pinhole size. But finally I made also four brass pinholes to have the maximum flexibility (and maximum chance to make a wrong exposure by using the wrong f/stop for the exposure time calculation )

    The camera and the storage box are mainly made with 2 mm card board. On the bottom of the camera I used 8 mm MDF to drill in the holes for the tripod mount. Painted and varnished card board is as strong and durable as wood. Attached files

  2. #2

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    The storage box for the paper and sheet film. It has two chambers: front for the unexposed paper with an aid for easier taking out the paper, back chamber for the exposed paper. The whole box is very compact, not much larger than a 9x12 sheet. The bottom and the top part of the box hold together by friction, but for having more safety I use two rubber bands to keep the parts together during transport (and what is a pinhole camera or equipment without a rubber band?)

    Attached files

  3. #3

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    Now a look inside the camera. Front part with the holder for the pinholes mounted in slide frames. The four focal lengthes. The paper holder is mounted in the 89 mm position. This paper holder is flat, but I will also make curved film holders for this camera (not yet done).

    Attached files

  4. #4

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    The four pinhole in the slide frames: 0.28 mm, 0.30 mm, 0.32 mm and 0.35 mm, home-made needle-drilled brass pinholes. Beneath the pinholes the top cover of the camera box.

    Attached files

  5. #5

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    Details of the top cover of the camera box. The foam rubber is not necessary, but I had never problems to get my cameras light-tight by this top cover design.

    Attached files

  6. #6

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    The front of the camera with closed shutter. The front cover is taken from a Japanese calendar.

    Attached files

  7. #7

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    A view of the camera with open shutter and the tripod mount on the bottom (25 mm washer and 1/4" nut).

    Attached files

  8. #8

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    A first picture taken this evening to check if everything is okay: camera light-tight, new pinhole okay and paper okay. This is the first real picture I took with this paper. It seems the preflashing was okay. The lighting in the evening was strong side light as in the last two weeks (almost every day blue sky, warm weather, strong sun light).

    Ilfospeed 2.24M (expired) paper negative, preflashed, developed in Centrabrom 1+9, 89 mm focal length, 0.32 mm pinhole


  9. #9

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    PS: My wife tells me sometimes that she has the impression that I love pinhole cameras more than her. But she must love me really very much. Today she returned from a longer trip to visit her family in Thailand and brought me a bag with 300 1/4" nuts (not available in Switzerland) as present. This should last for the next months to build a few more pinhole cameras with tripod mounts. ;D

    BTW: She payed about 1 USD per 100 nuts! Attached files

  10. #10

    Lotus Cam 9x12

    I wish I was married to someone who would bring me back a gift of 300 1/4 inch nuts !

    That's part of the problem I have with my current camera, I need to make proper tripod mounts for it.

    These pictures are up to your usual high standard, Rene. The cameras you make seem to get more beautiful each time. Your pinhole frames are ingenious!

    Excellent.

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