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R. Konishi Half-Plate Field Camera.

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Brazile
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Re: R. Konishi Half-Plate Field Camera.

Postby Brazile » Wed Nov 21, 2018 7:07 am

Alex,

Whew, a blizzard of information and questions; appropriate for the season, I suppose. :-)

I've never had a 4990, although I know they work fine for this purpose. My V700 has two lenses: one higher-res that focuses off the glass, and one lower-res that focuses on the glass. The higher-res lens can only accommodate up to about 5x7. I scan film with the holders, and would make one if I didn't have them. I shoot plates by placing them on the glass, emulsion side down, propped on four coins at the corners (US dimes, which are of about the right thickness), which works well for me. You can place them directly on the platen, but of course you risk Newton's rings appearing in your scans, which I assume you already know from the mention of ANR glass. In my experience, sometimes it happens and sometimes it doesn't.

Your suspicions about the ASA calculations are correct. You do the best you can with your meter, then add stops until you get there. This turns out not to be too bad in practice because a) it doesn't take long until you get a sense of the correct speeds for common scenes, and b) you can use one of the light meter apps on your phone, some of which go down pretty far in ISO setting. I often use "Pocket Light Meter" for the iPhone, and it works well enough for me in many circumstances. I used to use my old Gossen Luna Pro fairly regularly until it fell off it's hook and landed in such a way as to destroy its incident dome and crack the surface of the sensor. May replace it, but haven't got around to it yet.

Jason Lane's dry plates are good. I chatted with him at a local photo show last year -- very nice guy -- and bought a box of whole plate-sized plates to try out, which saves me from having to mess with cutting a new glass size, but I haven't refurbished the whole plate camera I have yet to try them. In general, I tend to prefer making and shooting my own plates, but that's just me, has nothing to do with his plates. It's not difficult, but does require an investment in accoutrements, and an appropriate (darkroom conditions, fortunately under red light) place to work. But developing plates, and paper, is great, because you can do it by inspection once you have a place set up for that.

One note about both paper negatives and dry plates: as I'm sure you aware, they are not panchromatic. What the paper is sensitive to depends on the paper: may be blue only, will be more like orthochromatic if multigrade. The main point here is that meters are usually calibrated for panchromatic response, and you cannot really trust them with "colorblind" plates and some papers in anything but sunlight. Not that you can't use them, but that you really have to apply a compensation factor to account for the composition of the light. If it's full-spectrum, you're likely good to go. If it isn't...well, you're going to be adding stops, and likely using your best guess to do so. So low-light, or indoors under tungsten or LED, etc., will mean you're in reciprocity-failure territory and will just have to test until you learn how your material responds. It's fun to play with, but be prepared for it, and not too disappointed if your early attempts aren't perfect. If you want to do portraits, you'll need either a LOT of artificial light, or stick to rather direct window light! I'd recommend architecture or landscapes to start, and still-life indoors next, before messing with portraits in this case. Or just use yourself as a subject until you get what you want; it gets boring staring at yourself, but removes a lot of pressure from the learning process. DAMHINT. (Don't Ask Me How I kNow This)

The whole process is fun, though, so I suggest you just jump in and give it a try before deciding which direction to go next. I spent too much time trying to overthink things and eventually found that just doing it was more rewarding and fun and gave me better data to help me figure out where to go next.

Robert
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alexvaras
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Re: R. Konishi Half-Plate Field Camera.

Postby alexvaras » Wed Nov 21, 2018 12:57 pm

Thank you Robert for the tips, I'm aware first and second and even following tries will be disappointing.
Yes Jason is they guy and I prefer to buy from him, strong odors at my place are not possible. Anyway it won't be soon. First I want to try with paper before going further.
Now I need to get the new seals for the bathroom, chemicals and the usual dark room.
Good news I got a tank for 4x5, scanner and chemicals for all the process, but that is another thread :)
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Julio1fer
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Re: R. Konishi Half-Plate Field Camera.

Postby Julio1fer » Wed Nov 21, 2018 8:42 pm

If you use old-style fixer and water bath instead of stop, odors should be very slight. But I will reserve comments for the promised thread...
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Brazile
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Re: R. Konishi Half-Plate Field Camera.

Postby Brazile » Thu Nov 22, 2018 6:26 am

Julio's right about developing; I use a water stop with plates and have been happy enough. Hypo doesn't stink, though I use TF-4 as being slightly better with a water stop, and it has a slight odor.

If you were thinking about making your own plates when you mentioned odors: I can't think of anything in that process that stinks at all. Gelatin and potassium bromide, silver nitrate, water. If you want the emulsion to last for a few weeks in the fridge, a tiny bit of thymol is good, too, which has an odor, but mostly just smells a bit medicinal, like old-fashioned mouthwash. But even that's not required.

Regardless, sounds like you're good to go. Looking forward to seeing the results. Wish I had more time for this myself at the moment, but I have another project taking all my spare time. Hope to be finished with it soon, though, and then back to the darkroom.

Robert
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alexvaras
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Re: R. Konishi Half-Plate Field Camera.

Postby alexvaras » Thu Nov 22, 2018 8:03 am

Then some videos got me wrong watching guys with gas masks warning to do it in a ventilated room.
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Brazile
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Re: R. Konishi Half-Plate Field Camera.

Postby Brazile » Thu Nov 22, 2018 10:39 am

They must have been ammonia sensitizing. Yeah, that stinks. I generally don't, and you certainly don't have to -- the basic emulsion works very nicely, if slowly.

Robert
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