Polaroid 110 to 3X4?

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Bruce Appel

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I recently got a polaroid 110a cheap, to use the lens on my speed graphic. I have seen stuff written about converting the camera to 4X5, but after looking at the camera it seems it would be pretty straightforward to convert it to 3X4 using a 3X4 back off of a speed graphic.Could maKe a really compact folding rangefinder.Has anyone tried this?
 

John Koehrer

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Bruce:
I have converted to a pack load polaroid. Should be no more difficult for you to do what you want. Hardest part was getting the focal plane adjusted correctly.
It may be easier to use a roll film adapter from a 4X5 camera to use the extra material surrounding the roll carrier to cover the back of the 'roid.
 

carsten

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Shaggy,
and how did you fix the new back to the old polaroid body?
Thank you
Carsten
 

John Koehrer

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Carsten,
It's been several years but, as I recollect, I mounted the back by drillling & tapping some holes into the 110 & screwed the back to it. I did use a pack film back for a 4X5. sealed it to the body with black weatherstrip adhesive from the auto parts emporium once I had determined alignment. PITA.
 

carsten

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Thank you very much Shaggy,
I am not such a good craftman, but is seems quite an easy operation (except for the alignment...)
 

glennfromwy

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I had a Graflex 6X9 roll holder for 4X5 that someone had cut down to fit some unknown application. I grafted it onto a Polaroid 95. It fit perfectly after hacksawing away the unneeded portion of the camera back. Glued it right on there with some kind of liquid rubber stuff. Reset the focus and it's ready to use. Now all I need is some decent shooting weather. I used to shoot 4X5 with this camera. They will take one sheet and hold it in place with the pressure plate, but you only get one shot and you have to reload. In the dark.
 

Donald Qualls

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Seems to me the simple way to hack this camera for 3x4 would be to get a $5 pack-film Polaroid (the ones that used the 100 series film, now reissued as 600 series Professional pack film -- plastic lens and no rangefinder would be the preferred, since the better ones are decent cameras as is), cut it just forward of the film pack recess, and graft it to the back of the 110A, cut at the film plane. Done carefully, this would require a minimum amount of focus reset, and allow use of modern Polaroid materials with the good rangefinder, excellent lens and manual exposure capability of the 110A. You get access to pos/neg, high speed B&W, and middle speed B&W and color emulsions, possibly including Fuji films (I don't recall if Fuji makes a 600 series compatible pack film to match their well-reputed 4x5 single-exposure offerings).

The camera would be much more versatile, however, with a 4x5 spring or Graflok back, allowing use of Polaroid single and pack films in the appropriate holders as well as regular sheet film in standard holders. If you have a Graflok handy, the conversion should be relatively simple (compared to, say, building a Space Shuttle with only a hammer, straight-blade screwdriver, and yardstick).
 

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Bruce Appel

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Thats pretty close to what I was thinking. If I can find a 3X4 back and some holders cheap enough, I will give it a go. The advantage of using 3X4 would be that it is what the camera and lens were made for, so the viewfinder framing should be accurate, and lens coverage should not be an issue. Could make a cool, compact, semi large format folder.
 

eric

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Not too long ago, on photo.net, I saw an ad in the Polaroid section where a guy charges I think $100 to do the conversion.

I don't know if you can search for old classifieds though.
 

audiomystery

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polaroid 160 to 2 1/4 by 3 1/4

I was reading your post about the 110a and thought I would chime in. I have been butchering cameras since I retired from my studio. I read the information at the land list site.. Dead Link Removed
On a lark I decided to get a polaroid 150 or 160 to see how they were made. The 160 caught my eye since it was only a buck plus shipping from ebay. When it arrived, I decided that the polaroid pack conversion wasn't for me. I don't really like polaroid. I do like medium format, so I pulled out a graflex roll film holder. The one I had laying about was for the deminative graflex. I little JB weld and just a bit of knitting yarn to fill the tiny gap on the edges and I was finished.

The fact that the darn thing has EV exposiur and a funkly electronic flash terminal caused me just a bit of concern but I learned to adapt. I have several medium formats that have begun life with different lenses so wasn't really prepared for the surprise. The darn 'roid camera is by far the sharpest in my little collections of misfits. Just thought I would let you know how easy the conversion of the polaroid roll film cameras really is. Just be careful trimming the back and you get a pleasing body to.

I also readjusted the infinity focus but I doubt that it was necessary on the 160 since the fstop is 8.8 but on the 110 it would be a good idea i expect.
 
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Yeah, that's where I'm headed.

Donald, I didn't realize (perhaps I read it and absorbed it subconsciously) you had posted about sawed-off plastic-body 'roids for a film back, but I did not throw away much of the several roids I gutted, and I'm glad. They have so many neat little mechanical parts I'm recycling them like crazy...springs, pivots, door locks, rangefinder and viewfinder, you name it.

I really like the EV part of them becasue it lets you disregard the weird f/numbers, or establish a new reference if you alter the focal length...like putting a Telek or equivalent behind one (with a longer back in that case). I found out most of the rollfilm 'roids have the same door dimensions, so I can swap camera fronts on a box with a metal front plate cut to fit the back door seal dimensions. I found 95B, 150, 160 & 800 all have same back dimensions. I have a long box with 5x7 filmholder ready to swap dissected 'roids onto...I just haven't figured out yet how to make the bodies detachable. They are heavy and there isn't much of a lip on that door seal to attach hardware to. Epoxy would be fine, but ruin the body swap concept.

One will be triplet + neg lens cell stretch to 210 mm and another will be bellows fron pinhole, if I can figure out a suitable mount.
 
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