4 x 5 to 8 x 10

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I currently use a Toyo 45CX and like it. Sure, the standards are a little unstable at times, but....

I would like to see how hard it is to jump into 8 x 10 from here. Is there a way I can transform my CX into an 810GII? Can I just get a couple new pieces and interchange them?

Or would it be more economical to go with a completely different 8 x 10 camera? I figured I could just interchange a couple parts so I wouldn't have to pack 2 big cameras on a trip and that I could possibly hike it up a mountain.

Thanks for the help. This forum is always great help.

-- Mark Wiens (mark@wiens.com), April 05, 2002


Go to Toyo's site and compare your 4x5 model with their equally excellent 8x10 monorail.Notice that the 8x10 weights 16.8 lb without a lens. The monorail on your camera is 445 mm long; which would be useable for 8x10(the 8x10 version is only 500mm).The rear standard and bellows would have to be replaced and probably the front standard also.In addition unless you have a very robust tripod and head you will need a new set for the larger camera.Plus new and expensive lenses and have you priced 8x10 film holders lately.The general rule for 8x10 is to "think big,think heavy,think expensive".I have a Canham 5x7 camera that has a 4x5 reducing back which is very handy and fits in where the film holder goes.I don't know if this is available for an 8x10 camera but if it is;you could sell your Toyo and make a down payment on a system liye this.You will also need to look into a membership at your local exercise club if you have any thought about toting this equiptment up mountains.Good luck.

-- asher galloway (asherg@bellsouth.net), April 05, 2002.

I believe it would be more economical to get a separate 8x10 camera. Otherwise you are changing standards, lensboards, bellows, back, etc. Better to get a camera that was originally designed for the purpose. If you plan to hike up mountains, get a lightweight field camera, not some metal monorail beast. Since you will be doing landscapes anyway, get a field camera. Not all 8x10s are that heavy. Just don't try to pack 20 or 30 film holders. Chances are you already are pretty choosy about what you photograph anyway, as a large format shooter. You can get some very good older lenses for it, sometimes at a very good price. Many people get Goerz lenses, I settled on a Kodak Commercial Ektar. There are also excellent newer ones, too many to name. Check the weight and if you can, the feel of the cameras you are interested in and then choose the tripod to support it. I weigh 120 pounds soaking wet and am not the Incredible Hulk, but I still can handle 8x10 with no serious problems.

-- Steve Gangi (sgangi@hotmail.com), April 05, 2002.


My suggestion: eBay, and lots of it.

My other suggestion: Quality Camera in Atlanta. I visited the company many years ago, and while I don't remember who I talked with, I do remember that they were friendly and helpful. They also had a drop-dead gorgeous, large camera set up. It may have been one of those Wisners.

Good luck.

-- Matthew Runde (actorm@hotmail.com), April 05, 2002.

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