Universal Lens Panels

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I'm starting to play about with turning my Arca Swiss into a pinhole camera. I would like to have different sized pinholes for differing focal lengths, but would rather not spend money on a new lens panel for each pinhole. I seem to remember that there used to be a company that made some sort of bayonet lens attachment. I think you bought one of their lens panels for your particular camera, but instead of it having a hole for a shutter, it had a slightly bigger hole. You then bought small bayonet plates onto which you mounted your lenses (one for each lens) - these then locked into the hole on the special lens panel. I was thinking that I could buy a number of these bayonet plates with one of the lens panels. Any ideas if these are still available, and if so, from whom? Or is there a better way to make multiple pinholes?

-- David Nash (nashcom@btinternet.com), March 01, 2001


Horseman makes a bayonet system for LF.

-- Åke Vinberg (ake@vinberg.nu), March 01, 2001.

Calumet makes what looks like a pinhole lens turret for the Zone VI lensboard (no PY2020) - should be reasonably easy to adapt to any other lensboard. Unfortunately, its damned expensive (about $400). They also make a a set of 12 1 1/2" square sheets with varying pinholes in them (PY3005). This is cheap (about $30) and again should be easy to adapt to a single lensboard. Good luck. DJ

-- N Dhananjay (ndhanu@umich.edu), March 01, 2001.

Why not take an existing lensboard with a # 1 hole in it (or #0 or even 00) and cut shim stock to fit and make yourself multiple poinholes? One pinhole per piece of stock. Carry them with and mount them when you need 'em with electrical tape. Or you could buy the set that The Pinhole Resource sells here: http://www.pinholeresource.com/products.html#micro-drilled

You don't need but one lensboard - and that doesn't have to be explicitly for your pinholes.

-- Sean yates (yatescats@yahoo.com), March 01, 2001.

I use Sean's method but have put three sizes of pinholes in the same piece of shim stock for different focal lengths. Two holes are covered with electrical tape while exposing. 1/2" off center and extreme low tech but isin't that the idea?

-- Bob Finley (rfinbob@aol.com), March 01, 2001.

Use 35mm camera body caps as the interchange medium. (Bore a hole in the body cap and affix the pinhole foil with glue or tape) Leica or Pentax thread ones are inexpensive accessories and the lensboard can be threaded or a Leica or Pentax thread mount fitted to it.

Or, an extension tube from any 35mm camera can be affixed to the board by a simple a means as epoxy or hot-melt glue. (such as Nikon) and then Bayonet type body caps can be used from that camera if you need a turn and click type mount.

The View camera interchangeable panels were a copy of the Meridian camera system made by someone in Tennessee. (M/C Photographic) I'm pretty sure they are out of that business and that set-up would have been considerably more expensive than multiple Arca boards.


-- Steve Grimes. (skgrimes@skgrimes.com), March 01, 2001.

Following up on Steve, an SLR reverse adapter works well: you can then screw on any number of "lenses" held in old filter rings minus the glass. But this needn't be so high-tech. A series of pinholes mounted on cardboard that slip into a cardboard frame over the lens board. Better yet, ditch the camera and make a simple box over box xamera (just like some of the first view cameras) built around a film holder if you must have variable focal lengths. Light, cheap, can go anywhere: sit on a ledge, sit on the ground, lodge in a tree branch, you name it. Porter's sells tripod adapters and a neat, tripod-mounted projector platform for $20. I am going to plug an exhibit since it was done all large format! http://www.pinhole.com/pinholer/exhibits/

-- David Stein (DFStein@aol.com), March 01, 2001.

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