Equipment Cases : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

What I need is a camera case with all the extra stuff (speed graphic and 5 lenses 90-500 barrel, plus holders, filters, and a Graflex bulb flash plus #5 bulbs, you need to see for yourself what a bulb flash can do for LF) to carry in a semi-hard or soft case. Any suggestions? I have a few graflex cases but they're too small for everything I carry with me when I go shooting LF. I usually break it down and carry just what I need with me (smaller bag) for the shot...but if I don't have it with me and it's at home, it's what I want to use. Thanks for your help with the suggestions for a case or maybe what I need is mule named tripod.

-- John Miller (, April 22, 2000


Several options depending on the use, i.e., out of the back of your car, backpacking, etc. -- several posts on this issue in the nature photo section of and on this site. Check out the f64 bags at or the Tenba bags at for some decent choices and ideas. I have an old Linhof with the aluminum case which works perfectly but weighs a ton.

-- Donald Brewster (, April 22, 2000.

Well you could buy a semi and 50' trailer...put a water storage tank inside, and build a portable darkroom!!!

Go to the local K-Mart store and check out the storage lockers. The cheap kind that look like old steamer trunks. I have one that measures 12x16x30. It does fit into the trunk of my old Toyota, and helps keep my camera cases almost in order when I travel. Extra film and holders go into Igloo coolers to help with the heat.

I hear llamas make excellent pack-animals! -Dave

-- Dave Richhart (, April 22, 2000.

Llamas make terrible pack animals. Forget the llamas. Are you sure you can't fit it all into a Graphic View case?

-- Erik Ryberg (, April 22, 2000.

I completely agree with the comments on Lamas. I have seen far to many spook in the back country for no apparent reason and leave a trail of debris that will cause you to cry. After growing up in Montana with a good friend that was a professional packer and outfitter and spending most of my free time up high, I would NEVER take the risk of placing my precious photography gear on any pack animal. Other gear -such as tents, food or sleeping bags maybe. My camera gear will be on my back. PERIOD.

I use a hard Pelican case that fits in my Kelty Super Tioga backpack.

-- Michael Kadillak (, April 22, 2000.

A one-l lama is a priest, A two-l llama is a beast. And I would bet a silk pajama There isn't any three-l lama.

-Ogden Nash

(Apologies for screwed up details; I'm quoting from memory)

-- Erik Ryberg (, April 22, 2000.

Dang it, these computers can never get the formatting right. That there up above is a poem, of four lines, not one.

-- Erik Ryberg (, April 22, 2000.

I second the suggestion of f/64 bags. I have the larger of the two (BPX?) and it's wonderful. I can fit everything- a 4x5 monorail, film holders, medium format TLR, 35mm SLR & 3 lenses, film, loupe, dark cloth, light meters, etc.- in it. All that gear plus tripod weighs in the range of 40 lbs, but the backpack is comfortable enough that it never seems that bad. Beware of two things, though. First, if you're built like a stick like me, the waist belt may be too big and need some modification. Second, it doesn't come configured in such a way that allows you to easily lash your tripod to it, so you may have to come up with your own ingenius solution. Other than those two minor gripes, I find the F/64 backpack to be a wonderful value.

Just a thought...

-- Dave Munson (, April 22, 2000.

Check out for backpacks from small to huge, if you want a backpack. These can have as much space as you need. As they comment on the site, they can "hold a ton." Of course, they can weigh a ton! (Call B&H for street prices, which can be 30% less.) See other posts about packs on this site.

If not a photographically designed pack, I prefer a rectangular space into which I can insert foam rubber cut to hold the camera, lenses, accessories, etc. For example, luggage cases with wheels are usually rectangular. You can purchase or order dark gray, hard foam rubber suitable of any size to hold photo gear.

We have an electronics supply house nearby that sells large cases to hold test equipment, tools, etc. They're very sturdy, and I've often thought that they would be suitable to hold photo gear. Some models have wheels and foam-rubber already included.

-- neil poulsen (, April 23, 2000.


You might consider buying a camp cooler -- Coleman etc. I took one of these for ~ $40.00 and fastened a set of wooden baffeles inside so I could hang my Toyo monrail in the box, upside down. There's storage for all the other crap on either end and it keeps the beast cool during the summer in the desert.

Robb R.

-- ROBB REED (REED@NHRC.NAVY.MIL), April 25, 2000.

Robb: Great suggestion. One question.. Does hanging the camera upside put any undesirable stress on the camera?

-- Chris Hawkins (, April 25, 2000.

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