Did you think, as had most of us, that revolving backs were mostly restricted to the SLR's? GHQ subscriber Ken Metcalf has found an exception...

[4x5 RB Speed Graphic Showing Position of chart] 4x5 RB Speed Graphic

by Ken Metcalf

I recently purchased the 4x5 "Pre-anniversary" Speed Graphic (SN 230205, circa 1936-1939) shown in the accompanying photographs. The camera is fitted with a 127mm Ektar Flash Supermatic shutter manufactured in 1946, mounted on a metal lensboard with the name "H. G. REIP" stamped in an oval recess in the lensboard casting.

The camera has a 3-l/4x4-l/4 revolving Graphic-style hack that appears to be factory or professionally done. The lens easily focuses to infinity even with the shorter focal length lens and added back depth

The most interesting part to me is the chart on the back of the camera. It appears professionally done, suggesting that more than one chart and/or camera was made or modified But why? I cannot figure out the meaning of the chart (see page 2)

I would like to learn more about the camera. Does any subscriber have a similar one? How was the chart used, and does anyone have an idea of the type of photography this would have been used for or who the photographer was?

[RB 4x5 Speed Graphic]HOLD THE PRESS: Tim Holden has some comments about this camera

It occurs to me that the camera may have been manufactured in 1938, but not modified until 1946 - the date of the lens, and possibly the time, also, that the tubular finder was added. Is the chart in fact for depth-of-field?

Chart from the back of the RB Speed Graphic
3.5 5.6 8 11
9 8/9 5" 8/8 8" 8/6 11" 8/4 16"
12 11/7 9" 11/5 13" 11/3 19" 11/0 2/3
15 14/5 13" 14/2 21" 13/9 2/6 13/5 2/4
20 10/0 24" 18/6 3/2 18/0 4/5 17/4 6/0
25 23/6 3/0 22/9 5/0 22/0 7/0 20/10 14/8
30 4/6 4/6 26/10 7/2 25/7 10/0 24/4 14/8
[Click on an image to see a larger view of it.]

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Reprinted by permission. from GHQ.