Miniature Speed Graphic – First Thoughts

I’m currently in the process of purchasing this camera someone at my camera club. The Miniature Speed Graphic was manufactured between 1939 -1946 and takes sheet film measuring 2 1/4″ x 3 1/4 which is still available online. This model has a spring back, but the previous owner made custom holders to accept 120 roll film backs – which I have 2. Although smaller than my Crown Graphic 4×5, I find it a bit awkward to hold, and it takes a bit to get used to switching between the rangefinder and viewfinder windows. The speed graphic has a focal plane shutter which allows the use of old barrel lenses without an internal shutter. I don’t currently own any, but it’s nice to know I could.

I took this camera down to my brothers house on New Years and was firing off a couple test shots on some Ilford Delta 3200 film.I can’t say I’m overly pleased with the results, but I’m going to attribute that to the slow shutter speed (it was dark in the house), and the wide open aperture. When the weather warms up a bit, I’l take it out for a real test, and maybe I’d even get a box of sheet film for this. Below are a couple shots I’ve taken so far.

Camera: Miniature Speed Graphic
Lens: Kodak Ektar 101mm f/4.5
Film: Ilford Delta 3200
Developer: Kodak HC-110 Dilution B @ 20.7C for 13:42 minutes.
Scanner: Epson V850
Catalog ID: 2017-077

2 thoughts on “Miniature Speed Graphic – First Thoughts

  1. What are the specs on the lens?

    I think you’re wise to wait and see what you can do with this camera in better light.

    It might be interesting to see some of your car show shots compared, from the Crown to the Miniature. And or course, you have to post some shots when you’ve had a chance to use one of the 120 roll backs. 🙂

    • Hey Shaun – The lens is a Kodak Ektar 101mm f/4.5. All the shots above were using one of the 120 roll backs.Was shooting handheld between 1/15 and 1/30 of a second. Need to actually take this outside in better light, mount it on a tripod and try it out for a fair test. No rush at this point to get more lenses.

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