Making Foam Core 4x5 Pinhole Cameras

9/7/2001

1) List of materials needed

 

App. $

 

a) Metal ruler, 18" in both English and Metric

$4

 

b) Xacto or mat knife and extra blades

$4 + $4

 

c) Double sticky tape

$2

 

d) Black opaque tape

$5

 

e) Black foam core board (usually comes in 32" x 40" sheets)

$11/sheet

 

f) Black mat board, 4 ply (about 1/16" thick)

$6

 

2) Image of finished camera [in this case a double slit 4x5]

Note the rubber bands used to hold the film holder in place.

3) Box and Exploded views of camera.

 

     

5) Measurements [new measurements 4/22/2001]

Film panel - see Foam Core Back

Pinhole panel - 4 3/4" wide by 6 1/16" long

Panel #1 - 4 3/4" wide by (focal length needed plus 1/2", i.e. 3" FL = 3 1/2" high)

Panel #2 - 4 3/4" wide by (focal length needed minus 3/16", i.e. 3" FL = 2 13/16" high)

Panels 3 & 4 - 6 7/16" wide by (focal length needed plus 1/2", i.e. 3" FL = 3 1/2" high)

Extra Support Struts - two pieces 4 3/4" wide by 1/2" high, two pieces 5 9/16" wide by 1/2" high. These are placed underneath the film panel inside the box to help support the film panel [not shown above for clarity][can also make an extra set for under the pinhole plane]

6) Assembly

a) Measure and cut panels,

b) Mark with pencil on panels 1,3,4 where the support struts will go,

c) Assemble panels 1,2,3,4 using panel #1 to align to,

d) Add support struts, and

e) Add film panel.

7) Front panel options

a) Straight pinhole designs, zoneplates and hyperfocal cameras

b) Multiple holes, overlapped and separated

c) Double slit and double zone

NOTE: Two front panels needed [pinhole side]. The second panel is recessed into the interior of the box the desired amount for the second focal length. The measurements of the box will be based on the longest focal length used.

See Making Foamcore Kits for a Class

Dimensions for other view camera formats.
Here is the hardest part, the film plane plate:

Description
4x5
5x7
8x10
Width
4 3/4"
5 7/8"
9 1/4"
Length
6 1/4"
8 3/8"
11 5/8"
Inside Width
3 3/4"
4 7/8"
8"
Inside Length
4 5/8"
6 3/4"
9 5/8"
Distance to "slot"
3/4"
5/8"
13/16"
From top to inside
5/8"
3/4"
3/4"
outside to inside width
1/2"
1/2"
5/8"

I would recommend double-checking these measurements with an actual film holder in hand.