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Boris Belay

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Everything posted by Boris Belay

  1. The grip in the picture you refered to will simply NOT work on a flat base Bolex model. You need the flat-topped grips with the quick release disc, or possibly the 'Sure-fire' handgrip (the one where the grip runs nearly parallel to the base of the camera so your wrist is not bent when holding the Bolex, and which triggers the camera through a flexible release cable), although that wold be a very personal preference. Cheers, B.
  2. Hi James, I don't have a manual, but if Dom agrees to scan his, I'd love to have a copy! As for lenses, zoom or otherwise, you are out of luck : it's one of the big limitations of the 16Pro, as it was only sold with either an Angé 12-120 or a Schneider 10-100 zoom. I believe there was also an optional wide angle (Zeiss 9mm?), but it would be even rarer than the two previous to find (and I spend enough tie on eBay to be able to say they are rare indeed). The problem is that not only you'd want functional servo controls, but the 16Pro has a specific mount, if I'm not mistaken. If you're not happy with your lens, your best bet would then be to have a technician either build or adapt the mount on your lens to another one. But keeping the servo controls is unlikely unless you find another lens with a very similar form factor. One possibility would be to trade your older f:2.2 12-120 (if you have the Angenieux model) for one of the more recent f:2-2.2 model with a better lens coating (serial number c. 14xxxxx, as opposed to your 12xxxxx). Both lenses have exactly the same shape, so swapping one for the other should be relatively easy and keep the servo controls. B.
  3. Hi Evan, I know a bit bout the GV-16. The first thing to know is that there are two main variants : the original model made for technical research, which does need a specific control box, and an adpted model (GV-16 Sport) which has a shoulder-support and a built-in base with the controls included, and was made mostly to shoot sport events. I think this later model came out of the NFL's modifications of a number of GV-16s to shoot football. They even endorsed the GV-a6 in a number of 70's ads in American Cinematographer magazines. As with all of Eclairs designed for scientific research (high speed in general), the cameras have various motors, which need their specific control box. The cable that comes out of the GV-16 body (same with GV-35, Camematic and so on) is not too feed the motor, but to control in camera functions such as marker lamps and such. The motor is fed by a cable that comes straight out of the motor. For the Sport model, the cables are fed into the built in base. There is no in-camera provision for triggering the motor either (except again on the Sport model). The standard set-up for a GV-16 is an internal gear-box that will drive the camera up to 200 fps, but that can vary, since these cameras were pretty much custom built by Eclair. And the standard motor is a 24-27V. Kinotechnique model (speed regulation on the motor, like a Cameflex motor). The standard magazine is a horizontal 400 ft model, but there was also a tiny 100 footer (which I have never seen anywhere so far). Yes, the camera has a standard C-mount. It has no viewfinder, so you either use a regular lens with a gate boresight (I have one of those) or you use a zoom-lens with buit-in viewfinder. The Ange 12-120 with VF was the standard lens for that (esp. on the sport model, which even had a bracket to reinforce it). I'm not sure whether SOM Bertiot models would fit the camera, since the base of those lenses is quite wide. Eclair also made a (very rare) specific adapter to mount CA lenses on the GV-16 (I have one of those, if you are interested). If the Craigslist camera is gone, look for a NFL-modified GV-16 that pops up on eBay now and then for a good price (I'm not sure if was ever sold). It seemed complete but a bit rough. Don't buy an incomplete camera, the motors and control boxes are just about impossible to find (I know, I have been looking for about two years now!), although the electronics would be easy enough to rebuild by somebody who knows this stuff a bit. Just to be clear : this is not a quiet camera! I haven't run mine yet, but I can tell it will make quite a racket when it ramps up to those high speeds... Probably not pretty at low speeds either! The design goes back to the 60's, when the NPR was a breakthrough design in 'silent' cameras' There is some overpriced documentation (User's Manual?) available on ebay (unlikely to go for the price they want!), and the camera is documented in early editions of the Carlson Professional 16/35mm Cameraman's Handbook (70's editions at least). There you go. Don't hesitate to write back if you have more questions about the camera. B
  4. Sorry for repeating what had been said before ! I didn't see the answers in the new presentation of the site... Didn't get past the advertisements!
  5. Hello Ray, What you describe could be a problem with the magazine, or one with your loading. You should place a load of wasted film in bth magazines and see if you notice anything particular in the way each runs the film. It should be smooth and fairly quiet in both, even with the magazine door open. The missing part in the second magazine is not a 'registration claw', but a simple ticking mechanism that is supposed to rattle when the lower film loop is lost. A lost loop means you would get the kind of streaking film you mention in your description because the film is pulled by the magazine srocket, and not by the camera claw. The missing mechanism is useful in that case, but is in no way necessary to the proper running of the film -- it's an alarm. Look in the camera manual (widely available on the net) for correct loop length, etc. Best, B.
  6. Sorry mate, can't quite give you a straight answer on this, but if you try across the bay, in oz-land, they may have an answer for you... I would start with Bruce at Aranda Film : http://www.arandafilm.com.au/ He's a very nice chap. Cheers, B.
  7. Hi Bill, I agree: if the motor has torque when off the camera, then the problem could come from the camera (the motor overheats and slows down because of too much mechanical drag). To test this, try 1) to hold the motor shaft with varying pressure from your fingers (perhaps with gloves on) while off the camera and see how much torque it seems to have. 2) Turn the camera mechanism from the rubber coupling to the motor (motor still off, obviously) and see if it seems unusually hard. It should be fairly easy to turn the mechanism, and above all, there should be no hard spots when you turn it. If you feel a hard spot, see whether it happens always at the same point in the cycle, and try to identify which mechanical part may be the problem. Basically, the shutter revolves continuously, while the claw has an intermitent pattern. If the mechanics of the camera seem fine, turning easily and smoothly, than the problem is indeed probably with your motor. The electronics on these Eclair Beauviala motors is antique (by electronics standards) and difficult to repair. I would try Electro Optical House for that, as George seems to be one of the few that knows and still bothers to dig into these old beasts. Otherwise, eBay regularly has (very cheap) NPR motors... and as you found out, a spare is always good to have anyways! Cheers, Boris
  8. Hi Erik, Looks like you're well on your way to a decent home-built transfer ! A few tips, if I may: Yes, get the lens closer. I you have a zoom lens that mounts on your bellows, use that to experiment and find the focal you need at a closer distance. And then, maybe look for a macro lens that will give you optimal optical results. I use a cheap piece of PVC tubing to mask out the open space between the lens holder on the projector and the taking lens. Cheap-looking, but works well to avoid problems with stray light. Or you should at least find a long lens-shade for your takumar. I bolted both parts of my rig on a single piece of wood so that, if they sake, they shake more or less together. And the whole thing is attached to a main wall of my studio so I don't get floor shake. I was lucky to find a Fumeo T-C projector, so I don't have any phase problems at 25Hz (PAL) capture. Projector is two-blade, locked on 25ips speed from the factory. I shoot with a very good 3 CCD 1/2" sensor JVC lab camera, on which I adapted a C-mount (Macro Flange-focal distance, but that suits the purpose), then some C-mount macro rings and a good 50mm. lens. I set the aperture manually on the lens depending on film exposure (wide variations!). Then I capture in SD but uncompressed with a Black Magic capture card, and I get excellent SD results. My next rig, and you should consider that too with your slow-speed projector, is to trigger frame by frame captures from the projector (low speed) to a DSLR with a Macro set-up like yours, allowing for excellent 2K or more frame-accurate transfers. Optically, the set-up is the same, and the trigger systen can be very simple. I experimented a while back with a computer mouse that I took apart, using a moving part on the projector to push the mouse trigger button at each new frame. Simple, but it worked well enough. None of that is complicated, it just takes a bit of experimenting. But re-filming the film itself is the key to good quality transfers. Cheers, B.
  9. Hello Evan, I don't know what happened with your spools and or magazine, but there is no problem putting a standard 100ft, 200ft, or 400ft daylight spool in an ACL magazine (in proper shape). All you need is to remove the flange that supports film on core and any of these spools WILL fit. Your problem may be with the mags, have them checked, or P.M. me for more details. Best, B.
  10. PS. The fad for Classic Cinema lenses may die out as quickly as it's flared up (so hurry if you want to profit, and be patient if you can't), it all goes very fast. What won't go away so quickly, I believe, is who calls the financial shots from now on. The good news is that make-doers like us thriving on obsolete technology (and perhaps knowing why we bother to), are a bit better-equipped to handle the sea-change than the average citizen of the now-enlarged Old World. At least that's what I tell myself when I fell bad about selling out ;-)
  11. Welcome to the new New World Order, people ! Not only is 16mm. film-shooting hanging by the thread of its teeth (or something like this!), pushed ever-closer to the precipice by the "Digital Revolution", but the Financial Center of the world has now effectively shifted, probably for good... Now, to be a little less cryptic : what you are seeing from the pinhole side of the Bolex world ("I love my Kerns and nobody much but other friendly Bolex nuts bothered me about it thusfar"), is that the Far-East Asians are gobbling up anything with a recognizable European brand name that will mount with some sort of adapter on their brand new digital puppies, be they Lumix, Olympus or what-not. The new pocket cameras with 4/3 sensors and replacaeable lenses have ushered in a new standard for prices, one that had only touched longer focal lenses so far, either to be mounted on larger sensor DSLRs, or -- with the Almighty PL-Mount added -- on the RED (upper-case not my own, for a change...). This, combined with the fact that the ones with the deep pockets are now on the other side of 'our' world, makes the phenomenon a bit more startling. And deep, they are, as deep as their desire (at least according to my analysis of the facts) to buy a piece of history/culture with their newfound (if much belated) wealth. Anyone familiar with how the Romans took over Greek culture after having proven their technological-practical superiotity over them -- and because all they had thus far was that techie/handy advantage -- will see where I get my analytical clues from. To be even more down to earth : I deal quite a bit on eBay (or off -- if anyone is interested in Bolex or Eclair gear, PM me ;-) ), especially when I need a bit of cash. I was preparing for a long thrip last December and got selling, including some C-mount lenses I had around for a while but did not have much use for... like an Angenieux video lens in C-mount, Focal 35mm, f:0.90. Pretty rare stuff, but not very useful (it was designed to be motorized and not handy at all without motor/outboard controler). Within a few hours of the posting of this lens on the Bay, I was negotiating directly with several dealers (only one was west-based, and dropped out quickly), to finally sell the lens for USD 2000 or so. All of the other cine lenses I was willing to part with, whether C-mount or C-mount adaptable, went (Far East) for sweet prices too. It left a strange taste in my cine-head mouth, I have to say. But had I been normally made-up (at least mentally), this taste should all have been washed away by the giddy-silly, totally over the top, absolutely unfathomable consumerism I witnessed on a short stopover in singapore during the trip itself. Believe you me, if you haven't seen Orchard Road in the last decade (or some equivalent main shopping strip in an equivalent Asian city), you don't know what excessive wealth spent on useless luxury gods means... NYC was the prototype, the giant malls that spread across the Occident were the working models, and this is the fully mature machine... And it's ongoing too : I need money again, so I throw a line into that new ocean, baiting with the common Angenieux 75/2.5 C-mounter (yes, the one made 50 years ago for B&H, etc), and I get this response right away: USD 3000 instead for a rather rare Angenieux 75/1.9 Cameflex mount lens. And just as much for its sister 40mm model. From a regular guy "who likes to take pictures of his wife and daughters", without even getting on eBay. I closed the deal, got paid lightning fast again, all the while wondering how stellar the price could have been, had the lens gotten some Bay-xposure... So yes, 'they' are buying us out of our lenses : so long as as they're called Angenieux, Kinoptik, Kern, Zeiss... even SOM Berthiot, and a few others, fixed focal lens, cover a micro 4/3 sensor (more or less, it doesn't even matter), and no matter the shape of it, its age, etc... It all goes for 3, 4, 5 maybe even 10 times as much as it did one year ago (not to mention before the RED PL-mount craze started). Only the wide-angles are safe so far -- funny, since they used to be the pricier ones... So hang to what you have, if you really treasure it (it's hard to resist these offers, let me tell you : I wasn't going to sell those two last ones), and dig into the rest of your cupboards for those old things you haven't given a thought to since you got them off eBay for cheap and figured out they didn't clear the Bolex prism (or equivalent technical limitation). Particularly if it's got a WOW-WIDE aperture (like the Kern 1.1, or that Ange 25/0.9 that couldn't stand the side-by side quality test with your old Kern 25/1.4), and yes, even if it's a SOM-Berthiot lens designed in 1954. I'm afraid that is all a bit larger trend than whatever can happen in the Bolex (or Cine-16) world, so we'd better get use to it, perhaps adapt to it, to maybe even benefit from it a litlle... Sorry for the long-winded post, but I wax lyrical when it come to macro-trends, especially if they spell the end of an era (and I don't mean 16mm., for once). Cheers, B.
  12. Hey Rob, What you describe is only true for the early models of ACL motors : the single speed (MIALA) motors, and the first generation of multi-speed heavy duty motors (MIMUL). From about 1975, Eclair shipped the ACLs with the next multi-speed motor (MIVAR) which has an automatic mirror parking feature (brings the reflex mirror back into viewing position at the end of each take, and when you first turn the camera on too). These motors (and the latest MIPIL model with external control feature) are identified by the (strange) mirror icon on the front of the inching wheel. All of the motors that have that icon should do this, unless they are starting to malfunction. Check the work I have started to do to identifies all of the evolutions of the ACL on the eclair16.com site for more on this. Also, if any of you are willing to help us complete the site, please get in touch with me : I need pics and serial numbers of ACLs to complete my history of the model. Let's keep these great cameras running, guys! Boris
  13. The Kino 5,7 should definitely focus without an internal glass filter. Or rather, i should say, it should be in focus from close to the front of the lens to infinity, since it's a lens without focusing gears. Your mount may be off kilter, or your adapter may be badly inserted. Or else, worse, your camera mount may be off. With these very wide focus lens, any discrepancy in lens to film distance is critical and very noticeable. If the problem is not obvious right away, check the Kinoptik for signs that it was dismantled (on the screws, etc.). As is, the lens is so solidly built that it should not go off focus that easily. B.
  14. Hi Ian, I'm pretty sure they are exactly the same materials. In fact I even have 2x2" metal adapters for gel filters that I can use in my Kino TGA. I think Kinoptik went for internal filters on their TGAs to avoid vignetting problems and having to have a huge filter in front of the lens (given the very wide FOV on those). You can fing glass 2x2' filters pretty regularly on eBay. I'm not sure whether anybody still makes them new, although t would be simple enough to have them cut from larger filters. B.
  15. Hi John, Your Schneider 6-66 Super-8 format zoom lens will not work : it will vignette at at least some, if not all, of the zooming range, and particularly at the wider angles. A Switar 10mm (non-RX) lens would be a very good (and rather cheap) choice, but there are many other options, so long as you keep to lenses designed for the 16mm. (or larger) format. The Schneider 10mm in C mount is nice too, but if you have an adapter for CAmeflex or Arri mount on your ACL, you'll have a lot more choices. B.
  16. Hi Evan, First of all, check with the manual (easy to find online) and you will get the official Eclair answer (that's just a general piece of advice...). Now, your puzzlement is quite justified, as your 400ft mag (SA544) was modified by somebody -- probably a tech, as I have some magazines with the same modifications. Frankly, I'm not sure what it's supposed to do... Maybe prevent S-16 scratches? (Bernie, do you know?) Either way, I'm not convinced it's any better than the original design. (The two holes you see under the separation wall were originally meant for the screws to that wall.) Your two 200ft mags show you how the mags were designed by Eclair. The simpler one top roller design (Mag B436) is the earlier one, found only on 200 footers. The later design (mag B835) has two top rollers, and was meant to improve high-speed performance of the mags after the multi-speed motors were introduced. Eclair then suggested earlier models should all be ugraded to the later version. If you only shoot at 24/25 fps, there shouldn't be a problem with these earlier mags, though. Eclair only ever used these two designs (except for the altogether different British layout on their 400 ft mags, designed before the French 400 footer). The modification in your mag is the only one I've ever seen (and yes, obviously, it should be threaded by going over that roller, as in your second photo). Boris
  17. Hi Kristian, I would NOT run a small ACL motor on that high a voltage ! I'm pretty sure I burnt out one of those while fixing it, running it on 13.7 Volt. The Multi-Speed motor can handle higher voltages, but those old single-speed ones seem much more fragile in that respect (perhaps also because of age). Definitlely try yours with a 12V. battery pack before looking for other possible problems. Boris
  18. Hi Tom, The NPR viewfinders do not fit the ACL. You need to modify them, and then the shooting position is different and makes shoulder-handling uncomfortable. So your only decent options (in my opinion) is to stick with ACL V-F. The non-orientable early ones are ok if you shoot mostly shoulder-held. The early Angenieux is higher than the non-orientable Kinoptik (rare beast), which was designed after the introduction of the 120m. mag (with those, the camera sits higher on your shoulder, so the V-F needs to be shorter). They also give a smaller image than the later orientable V-Fs. The orientable Angé should not move so much. Perhaps yours is loose somewhere (I'd offer to look at it, but I am in Europe...). Once set in the right position (which is a bit finicky), it should stay as set fairly consistently. The Kinoptik orientable model is definitely the best of all: brighter, simpler, but also heavier (certainly compared to the non-orientable ones). It is very hard to find on its own nowadays (and don't forget that you need the camera-side mount that goes with it : it is not the same as the Angénieux model). Your best bet is in fact to buy a camera with one and trade with yours. P.M. me is you need more info or want me to look at yours. Boris
  19. My thoughts are the same for the 25-250 AND the 17,5-70 as for the 12-120 : look at the particular lens' details (and first its serial number). These are both ciné lenses, and both types were 1) successful and 2) therefore made over several decades. In general more care should have gone into the 35mm. format 25-250 (Angé's flagship for quite a while) than into the affordable 16mm. format 17,5-70, but if the latter was made in the late 70's and the former in the mid-60's, and if an amateur bought the first one and harly used it, taking great care in his hard-earned treasure, while the big 10x25 was owned by a rental house that wore it into the ground before putting it in the bin (from which it should not have been salvaged), then... you see my point. And again, the 10x25 is a BIG lens, so that may be a consideration : can your camera even handle it without a support system ? As for the 4x17.5, I'm a little weary of their fairly recent 'rediscovery' on eBay. Because one reseller had a very good batch of late series NOS, and because they happen to cover S-16 (not such a feat, given the not-so-wide angle it goes down to), there seems to be a flurry about any and all of these lenses. People (sellers included) don't seem to even distinguish between the 50's (yes, 1950's!) silver version of that series (4x17,5/18/20/25) and the later black version, let alone bother with the serials that could tell you whether those are from the 60's or the 70's... So, a word for the wise when it comes to those classic Angénieux : don't dismiss them all out of hand because many are indeed soft and beaten down, but do proceed with caution, as they were victims of their own success and only a few of them are still gems in the pile. And if I'd have to risk an abstract advice, I'd say : stick with the 12-120 if it's decent (which is as likely as for the other lenses you mention), and consider going with primes for the complementary wide shots. There are lots of good cheap wide-angle primes in the range you mention (10/12-18), particularly if you can use 'legacy' mounts such as C (AR Switars) or Arri St (Taylor Hobson Kinetals, for instance). Basically, zoom lenses designed before the late 70's suffered substantially in optical quality compared to prime lenses. (It's still true afterwards, but to a lesser extent.) So zoom lenses from that period have to be in very good shape to be good shooters, while you can be a little less picky about primes (so long as they weew well designed and crafted to begin with).
  20. Craig, I didn't mean to say the ACL was noisy ! I shouldn't be if it's maintained halway properly. It should be quiet enough to have a decent synch-sound session in an enclosed space, especially so with a barney. What I meant is that it's not quite up to today's standards in silent cameras (an Aaton XTR is nominally half as loud, I believe), but those cameras are in an altogether different price bracket. So the ACL is not the quietest camera around, but perhaps the most affordable of the quiet ones (or perhaps the NPR is).
  21. Hi Mike, Not sure which adapter you are refering to : still camera lens adapters (which mount)? 35mm Cine lenses (which mount)? There are lots of different adapters for the very common C-mount of the Bolex, and the picture quality should be good if the lens is decently made. As for intercutting with the Arri, so long as the Bolex is in decent shape, registration should not be a problem. Your main concern will be that the lenses on the Bolex produce a similar image to those on the Arri. Since I don't know which you would use on either camera, it's hard to say more. Then again, if you plan on transfering your footage to a digital format for cutting, color correction should be relatively easy and your shots should intercut ok... probably. B.
  22. Hi, Don't know much about the Kinors, so I can't help with the comparison. If you're going to shoot synch-sound with an EBM (or any H16 for that matter) in an enclosed space, you'd better work with a sound engineer with skill and above all, understanding and patience. It's not impossible, but... Hell, movies are made with half of that ! All the rest is comfort, no? I know Bolex inside and out, but when I decide to shoot synch-sound and/or 120m. rolls, I move on to an Eclair ACL. I'd recommend you give them a good look, as they are quiet (not the quietest, but synch-prone), simple, dependable, and very flexible, for quite cheap too. At least, that's my advice. B.
  23. Hi Dan, Hard question to answer because both lenses are older types that 1) may have had a rougher 'personal' history and 2) were made over a long period of time with improving visual qualities. This latter point is particularly true of the 12-120, which was produced from the mid 50's to the mid 80's (!). A late 12-120/2.2 (look for serials beg. with 13xxxxx or better 14xxxxx) can be quite a decent lens to shoot with, and if it's a 12-120/2-2.2 version, it's even better. As for the 15-300 model, it is quite rare indeed. It does cover the S-16 frame, but of course is doesn't go as wide as the 12-120. Also, I don't believe it's a 35mm. lens, but rather one that was designed for the 1-inch pick up tubes of 70's video cameras (thus the S-16 coverage). As the 12-120 (type 10 x 12) had a 20x version (12-240), so did the 15-150, and that is your 20x15 lens. I'm not sure picture quality was that great to begin with, since those early video cameras were quite dismal in resolution. Also, Angénieux went for the wow effect of a 20x. lens, which was an engineering feat at the time. So range probably comes at the expense of some quality, in that case -- not to mention, of course, the slowish aperture. Personally, I'd lean towards the 12-120, if it's a late s/n, especially if weight/bulk is an issue. But again, these are general considerations. The most important factors would be the actual age of the lens and how it has been treated, serviced, etc. since leaving the assembly line. Cheers, B.
  24. The manual is quite useful in this respect : do you have one ? Otherwise, there is also this website : http://www.city-net.com/~fodder/bolex/shutter.html
  25. Hi Jason, The short answer to your question is yes, replacing a ground glass on an ACL is a very finicky technical operation. It's easy to take it out, and if you were to replace the same gg, you may get away with very carefully marking the setting of the gg before taking it off, but I wouldn't swap another one in and expect it to be in focus. And of course, if your gg is not in the right position (and we are talking microns here), then you will see a different image in your viewfinder than what is imprinted on the film... Big Problem !
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