4x5 film for Polaroid 95A

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by c.w., Jul 12, 2009.

  1. c.w.

    c.w. Member

    Feb 16, 2009
    Multi Format
    Recently, while helping a family member move i inherited a Polaroid 95a Land camera that my grandfather used. I thought it might be neat to shoot a few frames with, so i've been poking around trying to get info on it. After a bit of reading around, i found out that 4x5 film fits inside it pretty well (although it doesn't cover 4x5 completely). So, i'm trying to figure out exactly what i'll have to get to try and do this.

    First, there's the film - i'm very temped to get Arista-II Ortho Litho Film because it is incredibly inexpensive (~ 35 cents a sheet) and i can handle it under my red safelight, so i can fiddle with it in the darkroom and not worry about ruining the film, not to mention developing by inspection in trays. But i'm worried about the speed, since i'd like to shoot handheld, but they don't list an ASA/ISO anywhere i can find. I'm really leaning toward this, but it needs to be fast enough (or able to be pushed to fast enough) that i can shoot handheld, otherwise i might as well do paper negatives since i'll probably be mostly contact printing.

    The other option is something like HP5+. I lose the ease of loading the sheet under safelight, but possibly gain the ability to shoot handheld and might get better tones. There's also the issue of developing it. I can do it in trays in the dark, but it seems to me like it might fit inside my daylight tank. I have a Arista two reel tank (which isn't amazing, but it's good enough 99.9% of the time) and if i place the film with the emulsion facing in (i guess the way people process in tubes?) and put in enough chemisty to cover i guess i could just use it like normal - i'm just not 100% sure on all of that though. Not to mention it's almost 3 times as expensive per sheet.

    Of course, then there's the entire loading and unloading process. I'm pretty much ok with doing it one sheet at a time - but if anyone's done this before it'd be extremely helpful to have your input. Thanks for any advice of comments. I wasn't exactly sure where to post this, so if you think it'll get a better response in a different place, let me know.