Toyo bellows do not fit on VX-125? : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I just receive a 410 mm Toyo bellows that I bought second hand. Although it fits the lensboard side of the VX-125, it doesn't on the other side. Is it an old make?

-- Paul Schilliger (, June 07, 2001


Other question if I may: I am looking in a piece of rail to make a special setup. Are the Toyo non extendable rails made of the same strength tube with similar wall thickness than the extension rails? Or is it a cheaper, lighter stuff ? Thanks !

-- Paul Schilliger (, June 07, 2001.

Paul, as for the Toyo bellows, it must be a very old toyo advertises interchangeability between all their products. All their new products and Bellows does fit the VX125. As for the extension rails for the toyo system...they are rock solid rails, much stronger than the telescoping rail on the VX125. There is a lot of problems in getting rails to match up with the camera, so try to assess if all this would be worth it vs. paying top dollar for the factory Toyo rails. The problems come in with the ability to make the camera move over rail connections...if you could make one long rail, this may not be an issue. Based on how long you want to go, you should still consider having a machninist make a connection to your existing telescoping rail, then you can add additional rails when needed, this can easily get you up to 750mm, or as high as 1250mm with only two extensions. I like the convience of not having to take the VX apart to add additional rails. For long extensions you also need the Toyo Subframe... which is very expensive, unless you buy their long bellows which is listed at 750mm, but does not actually extend that far, I would rate it at 600mm. Therefore I use it with the VX bellows and the subframe.

-- Bill Glickman (, June 07, 2001.


I'm interested as well creating a that connection between the VX rail and the rail extensions. Do you actually know however does this job?

Thank you.

-- mario (, June 09, 2001.

Sorry for my terrible English.

My question is: can you indicate to us a particular machinist that did this job already successfully?

Thank you.

-- mario (, June 09, 2001.

Mario, If you did not get the answer privately, I can tell you Steve grimes (link at the LF Forum home page) has done this before for Bill. However, Bill would tell you that it is something a little beyond boundaries, as the collapsible is already at it's weakest and somewhat flimsy when extended at 300 mm. What I wanted to do was using a new piece of rail self supported in a tripod clamp, and screw in the collapsible rail so it is now the extension and carries the lens only. But of course, this requires machining too. The advantage over a new set of rails is that it is much easier to pass the standards from one rail to the other when they are connected.

-- Paul Schilliger (, June 09, 2001.


If I was capable of attaching, lets say, two extensions of 250mm, just like you do when you attach the caps, I would keep the collapsible VX rail at Itís minimum (at itís full strength). 500mm or 600mm of extension rail for me would be more then sufficient.

Utopist? Maybe...

Anyway I didn't get any private e-mail about this matter. But I hope to get one from Mr. Steve Grimes, to which I wrote before.

Thank you.

-- mario (, June 10, 2001.

Mario, it can be done so. But I believe the tripod link of the collapsible rail is actually a problem. It is too flexible in my opinion to assure the rigidity of a 500 mm or longer extension. Even when using a 240 mm, I have seen that a very light breeze can ruin the picture's sharpness. That's where monorail cameras with relatively high axial point and large bellows (compared to flatbeds) lack, in outdoor use. I myself will look into a separate tripod clamp, to get the most of the camera extension, long lenses being very demanding in terms of stability. This will also keep the strain applied to the collapsible to an amount that it was designed to support. Too much strain can loosen the dove tail assemblies and cause damage. I had been thinking this in and out with the experiences of Bill, and thought I would consider extending one end only, preferably the back where the strain is greater when inserting and holding the rollfilm backs, and use a separate clamp (heavy duty) to assure the stiffness of the whole assembly. I will have to look into one extension only for my needs. But I think, if the job is done by Mr Grimes, he can preserve the possibility for extending the extension rail itself with an unlimited amount of rails.

-- Paul Schilliger (, June 10, 2001.

Hey guys, keep this in mind... If you make this fix, you do NOT have to extend the telescoping rail out when adding extensions. For example, when I want 500mm, I just screw on two 250 extensions and do not open the telescoping rail...therefore its never at risk. I have been using this set up for 2 years now with no problems at all. To go through all this trouble, just be sure that you will use it ofen enough to justify it! If not, just make a connection on one end as Paul suggested. I use my Nikor 1200 quite often on the VX and this has become a very welcome improvment. Although if I have the time or there is any wind, I quite often will just install 3 rails and abandon the telescoping arrangement. But when I only need 500mm, I always stay with the tele rail and just add an extension...

-- Bill Glickman (, June 11, 2001.

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