Speed Graphic

Discussion in 'Medium Format & Large Format' started by Actor, Dec 24, 2009.

  1. Actor

    Actor TPF Noob!

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    I giving some serious thought to buying a Speed Graphic. They seem to go on eBay for under $500, meaning I can definitely afford it. One thing that concerns me is the availability of parts. I understand that Toyo bought Graflex in 1973. Can you still get parts from them?
     
  2. c.cloudwalker

    c.cloudwalker TPF Noob!

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  3. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    Toyo didn't actually buy the company, which at the time was part of Singer. They bought the remaining parts, tools, and rights to the design of the Graphic press cameras. For a short while, they actually made and sold a press camera based on the Super Speed Graphic, though the lens lens didn't have the special shutter.
     
  4. compur

    compur No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Best source I know for Graphic parts is eBay. You might also try contacting
    eBay sellers directly who frequently sell Graphic parts for any particular parts
    you need.
     
  5. djacobox372

    djacobox372 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    i own two 4x5 speeds, parts arent a problem. The cameras were made for 50+ years! and u can use any 4x5 lens and shutter u want.

    u should be able to pick up a nice speed or crown graphic for around $200. id recommend buying a couple grafmatic or kinematic film holders to go with it. You might also consider developing the film yourself, a combiplan 4x5 develpment tank works great.
     
  6. Actor

    Actor TPF Noob!

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    I kind of thought that was a given. Whenever I take MF film (or 35mm B&W) to the local photo store for processing they roll their eyes and then charge me an arm and a leg. I can imagine their reaction if I were to bring them some sheet film. :lol:
     
  7. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    I would also suggest that you question your choice of a "Speed" Graphic. Are you using the name correctly and really want the focal plane shutter? Will you prefer a noticeably lighter camera and will be using it with lenses with their own leaf shutters?

    If "no" to the first and "yes" to the second, you want to look for a "Crown" Graphic rather than a "Speed". The "Speed" in the name indicates the presence of a 1-1.5 pound focal plane shutter of only marginal accuracy and consistency. It can be useful when you mount lenses in simple barrel (no shutter) mounts. Most view and press camera lenses will have their own, generally more accurate and more reliable, shutters making the camera's focal planes shutter just so much extra weight.
     
  8. Actor

    Actor TPF Noob!

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    Yes, I want the Speed Graphic. I already own one barrel lens (no shutter) and it seems there are quite a few barrel lenses on eBay. However, I would not pass up a Crown Graphic at a good price. I won't be buying one until spring when those high winter heating bills are behind me. I've shut down my darkroom for the duration because the developer has frozen. :lol:
     
  9. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, frozen developer doesn't work very well.

    It was a nippy 68 degrees last night when the wife and I walked down to Duval St. to watch Sushi drop in her slipper to mark the coming of the new year (you may have seen it on CNN last night). Its sunny and 77 degrees right now (~11:30 am on the 1st).

    Back to the topic, Speeds exist for lenses in barrels, which allowed faster lenses, and for the faster top shutter speed, well beyond what left shutters could obtain at the time. If you are looking at barrel mounted lenses then a Speed is what you want.
     

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