55mm lense - Arca 6x9 and universal 20cm bellow

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I'd like to buy a 55mm or a 58mm for my coming Arca-Swiss 6x9 which has the 20cm soft leather bellow (the universal bellow). The specifications says that it can accept lenses from 55m up to 150mm : but will I get enough movements for this lense with that bellow ? I will use it mainly for architecture and urban landscape.. I'd also like to get a 150mm lense, both for portrait and architecture.. but here again : will I get to many limitations from the bellow ? Is there anyone using one of these lenses with that bellow ? Should I rather order a 65 and a 135 or 120 in order to get better movements : those would be my first and only lenses for a while, may be with a 75mm, so it is important for me to be able to use enough movements.

TIA for your answer.

-- Christiane Roh (rohcris@vtx.ch), August 31, 2000


Christiane, I won't answer your question precisely not knowing the Arca cameras but just give you a hint on a technique that may add some wide-angle possibilities on a large lens board type camera: the use of a recessed lensboard adaptor or a recessed lensboard(you may want to mount your lenses on small lensboards and have an adapter plate on the camera or have the lens directly mounted on a recessed wide-angle board). This will allow for a lesser compression of the bellows and therefore permit more movements.

-- Paul Schilliger (pschilliger@smile.ch), August 31, 2000.

I also have an Arca 6x9 for which I considered a lens in the 50-55mm range so that I could use the original bellows. But after thinking long and hard on it I decided to use a 47mm XL lens, and the 15cm wide angle bellows rather than a resessed lens board. In the long run you'd be better off with the wide bellows, and you will open up your lens choices down to 35mm. Bob P.

-- Robert Pellegrino (bob.pellegrino@juno.com), August 31, 2000.


I used a 55 Apo-Grandagon with the 20cm bellows for landscape and nature work, and had plenty of movements. You can rent a 55 from Photomark in Phoenix to try it for your applications.

-- Glenn C. Kroeger (gkroeger@trinity.edu), August 31, 2000.

Just like Glenn, I am using the Rodenstock 55 on a flat lens board with the Arca 6x9 Universal bellows. Excellent lens - can't give it enough praise. The flat board is sufficient in my opinion (definitely for tilting), but if you need extrem shift or rise for architectural type of work you may consider a recessed mounting board.

Just as a side note: I mounted my 180 Rodenstock on a recessed mounting board - but in reverse !!! (to get a little more bellows extension.)

-- Andreas Carl (andreas@physio.unr.edu), August 31, 2000.

I too have and use the 55 (flat board) on an Arca-Swiss 6X9 with 20cm bellows. It works OK, but I'm ordering a 7mm recessed board to have a little more movement.

-- sam alexander (salex@idt.net), September 01, 2000.

I forgot to add that I used the 7mm recessed board. I would recommend that board... it is very nice and doesn't present the bother of other recessed boards.

-- Glenn Kroeger (gkroeger@trinity.edu), September 02, 2000.

Many thanks for all the answers sent concerning the lenses supported by the 20cm bellow. From your answers and from others gathered on the news groups dedicated to LF equipment, I get the impression that the specifications of Arca-Swiss concerning their bellows are rather conservative.. This is a good news..

-- Christiane Roh (rohcris@vtx.ch), September 02, 2000.

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