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Thread: 4x10" multi-shot Panoramic camera

  1. #1

    4x10" multi-shot Panoramic camera

    Hi folks, though I'd share my 4x10 multi shot camera. I know Joe Van Cleave, James Harr and Ned Lewis use multi-shot cameras so there might be something useful here.

    4x10" multi-shot Panoramic Pinhole camera (hold 50 sheets)
    Focal length = 105mm, f260. Horizontal angle of view = 138 degrees

    When I was building the 6x17 camera I began to think about using the 8x10" x-ray film cut in two in a re-loadable camera. So after playing around with a few ideas here's the prototype for a 4x10" camera that holds 50 sheets of film. It doesn't use film holders as the film is stored inside the camera. There is a 'shelf' for un-shot film on top and one on the bottom for exposed film. The integrated changing bag makes it possible to get into the camera while out in the field. So, the process is this:
    1) Cut some 8x10" x-ray film in darkroom with red safe-light on so I can see what I'm doing (x-ray film doesn't mind!)
    2) load 50 sheets into the camera (top shelf) and one to the curved film plane
    3) Close up camera with latches ( it's now light tight so I can leave the darkroom)
    4) Outside the darkroom I attach my modified changing bag (eyelets added) and faster wooden clamps with screws/nuts. These will stay in place until I'm done shooting and want to unload the camera.
    5) got out and shoot! ....after each shot I access the camera via the sleeves in the changing bag, open the hinged door, reload film and close hinged door. It takes about 30 seconds to reload.


    Last edited by Jimmy G; 12-14-2013 at 11:32 AM.

  2. #2
    The shutter is a magnetic pivot type, with two independant pinholes for placing the horizon on either third.

  3. #3
    inside showing top and bottom shelves and curved film plane..I added a rear curve afterwards to keep the film in position as it was sometimes popping out of place.

  4. #4
    Fixing on the changing bag, and re-loading...note I added eyelets to the changing bag (after cutting off the bottom of was only 10 euro)
    Last edited by Jimmy G; 12-14-2013 at 06:49 AM.

  5. #5
    That's a nice camera design, Jimmy. I especially like those flanges and eyelets, I might have to borrow that idea.

    I've been thinking about adding a changing bag to one of my cameras, to avoid having to find a place to sit down while changing the film/paper. My designs require you to sit down in order to form a table-like surface with your lap (or find a table somewhere), difficult to do while out in the wilderness, for instance. With an attached bag, you have the convenience of changing out the film/paper while the camera is still mounted atop the tripod.

    "There was just that moment and now there's this moment and in between there is nothing. Photography, in a way, is the negation of chronology."-Geoff Dyer, "The Ongoing Moment"
    My Writing Blog: Joe Van Cleave's Blog
    My Pinhole Blog: Obscure Camera
    Visit my F295 Gallery

  6. #6
    Go ahead Joe. Yes the flange/eyelet is the key to attaching the bag - and it's simple to build, nothing special there.. The eyelets/grommets set costs a few bucks only and they normally supply the punch that you can use to punch the changing bag. I got them on ebay and saw tons of options. It still looks a bit odd and you will probably have your own personal homeland security drone following you 24/7 but it works well.
    As for that last attachment here it is:

  7. #7
    Administrator Tom Persinger's Avatar
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    Jun 2004
    Pittsburgh PA USA
    great camera! love those superwides!

  8. #8
    500+ Posts Ned.Lewis's Avatar
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    Jul 2012
    Sonoma County, California
    Jimmy that's a great looking camera! It's fun to see the "built in changing bag" design actually made!
    Also the negative of a scene we know! Nicely done.

    My only "multi-shot" camera was like Joe's, with a storage compartment at the rear, and you put the entire camera inside a changing bag to swap paper. It was convenient. ( I'm not using that camera for other reasons, the "multi-shot" part was a success. )

    I'll be keeping this in mind for future cameras!
    Some photos: Ipernity
    ( pinholes and solargraphs mixed in among the rest)

  9. #9
    I was eyeing a Christmas cookie tin at a theater the other night. Nice sized rectangular box for an 8x10.
    A little deep at 4+ inches, but figured I could build up inside the bottom for the film plane, with pinhole(s) in the slide-on cover.

    Then seeing this thread, it occurred to me to reverse the pieces.
    Pinholes in the bottom of the tin, with paper holder and new/exposed slots in a shallow box on the removable lid.
    Would still need a separate changing bag, but access would be very easy.

  10. #10
    Administrator Tom Persinger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Pittsburgh PA USA
    post pics when you build it Dave!

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