Hat-tip to the pioneers on RFF who have inspired me - apologies if I have missed anybody:
EDIT: added http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...d.php?t=113803
Having got interested in landscape and architectural photography, I wanted a relatively inexpensive, easily pocketable, 6x9 MF camera.
For the first step, I was lucky enough to get a F/6.8 65mm Schneider-Kreuznach Angulon for a relatively low price because its host Synchro-Compur shutter had had the shutter elements stripped out; only the iris remained.
This was not a serious problem, as I have a Size 00 VARIO shutter that was designed for the Kershaw 630 (unused old spare stock of these - as well as those of the 450 - have turned up on ebay-uk). The VARIO speeds B 25 75 200 were sufficient for the range I was likely to need hand-held in daylight. The positions of the aperture markings were amended to suit the different focal length (65mm, instead of the 80mm of the Kershaw).
After some research on ebay, I got a 6x9 folder with rail pull-out lens standard.
A nice refinement on this body was that it had rack focussing, and the distance scale was under the focussing lever (rather than under a pointer at the position of the lens standard), so that this could be reused directly, with superimposed new markings, with the shorter focal length lens.
(The camera was by Voigtlander - I couldn't find a model name on it, but it looks like one of the INOS models - with an f6.3 Voigtar lens in an Embezet shutter.)
(I also had a late model Ensign Carbine which would also have been a possible basis for the modification, but as it weighs ~200gm (nearly 1/2 lb) more than the Voigtlander, it is more of a strain on the pocket to carry around, and I don't need the movements offered by its lens standard. However, as it turned out, its red-window cover would have been nice to have.).
(The original shutter/lens assembly and its retaining ring - nominally 32.5mm diameter thread - were stored away so that the camera would be restorable to original condition.)
By a stroke of good fortune, the dimensions of the shutter retaining ring interface with the bellows front plate (hole diameter 34.5mm) were compatible with that of a modern Size_00/Size_0 adaptor kit (available on ebay). So no metal-bashing was required, and the modification was cleanly reversible.
Coaxial location, of the shutter assembly in the lens standard, was ensured by a plastic plumber's washer, trimmed to 25mm internal diameter , 32.5mm external diameter. This 1.5mm thick washer was augmented with 0.4mm shim made from card.
(The adaptor kit also supplied a disc with a 25mm hole designed to be placed between the Size 00 shutter and the lens standard, but at 1mm thick, it left only a short length of thread for the retaining ring. Fortunately it was found to be not necessary to use this disc.)
ANGULON FOLDER SPECIAL Mk.1 - Picture 1
, on Flickr
The Infinity position was defined by a stick-on label with a mark to indicate where to place the front of the lens standard carriage.
The camera wire-frame viewfinder system is not used, as the rear frame was positioned to erect at the front face of the camera; this meant that the eye would have had to be positioned at an impracticably forward position for wide-angle use. So a suitable viewfinder was salvaged from an old disposable 35mm film camera.
This was fixed with a 'sticky fixer' pad so as to be removable without damage to the camera.
I expect to evolve the design with experience in use and as bits and pieces become available to improve the ergonomics. Some of the first results are shown next below.
ANGULON FOLDER SPECIAL Mk.1 - Picture 2
, on Flickr