szabad 5x7 camera : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

i have a szabad camera, and was wondering if anyone else had ever heard of this camera? ... is there a good way to make a "stop" so normal 5x7 film holders will regester at the right spot? the film holders have to go in about 1/4" or so beyond where the film holder would normally want to stop, until the film opening is lined-up and it is sort of a pain .. . if it were the other way around and i had to put it in "less" i know i could put some small round screws as a "block" ... but i am at a loss to figure out the best way to remedy my situation ... does anyone know how to determine the age of one of these cameras? i read somewhere that they were only made between 1943 and 1962 and they were used by lots and lots of swedish commercial and portrait photographers ... thanks in advance! - john

-- john nanian (, June 05, 2001


Hi John!

The Szabad camera was built by a hungarian who immigrated to Sweden. I know very little about him but I think that he was an engineer. The cameras he made were done for the european formats (13x18 and 9x12 cm). I don't think they are very abundant, but I see them now and then. I have never seen a 13x18 in the flesh, so I did not know he did them. Until now, that is.

The engineer did constant developments and changes to the cameras, but from the examples I have seen they are sturdy and well-built, if not over-built.

I thought the 5x7 holders would be like a 4x5 holder. These holders have the same outer dimensions as the european 9x12 cm holders. The hungarian also made Szabad filmholders. I have eight of these (9x12) and they seem to be made to the standards.

Can't you just mark up the holders so that you know how far in the holders has to go to sit correctly? Otherwise you might have to modify the camera, but I am positive there is some way to remedy the problem.

-- Jimi Axelsson (, June 06, 2001.

jimi! thanks so much for the information about my camera!

i figured out what the deal was with the film holders ... i came to the realization that the camera's former owner put the ground glass on upside-down, so things were a little messed-up .. :) since i reversed the ground glass, the film holders seat PERFECTLY!

- john

-- john nanian (, June 17, 2001.

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