I have quite a passion for film photography. It calls for a slower, more deliberate creative approach and produces tangible results. I could rave on about my ideal equipment for hours - a Mamiya 7 for the practical take on medium format, a Hasselblad XPan for the panoramic frame size and of course the Leica M series for its iconic design. At the time of starting this project I had no way of affording any of these cameras - so I decided to amalgamate their desirable qualities into a single device of my own.
Camera parts are typically made of injection moulded plastic or milled metal alloys. As neither of these production methods were available to me, I modeled the parts in CAD to have them printed in nylon. The resulting precision and quality in relation to the tools used and time invested is unique to such additive manufacturing. Furthermore, the unibody design resulted in the finished camera comprising of only eight parts, making it both durable and simple to assemble. The software used was AutoDesk Fusion 360 and the print material is SLS polyamide. Printing services were provided by 3DPRINTUK with their EOS P100 and P110 printers.
This project makes use of a Schneider Kreuznach 90mm f/8 Super Angulon lens, intended for use on 4x5 cameras. The lens' optical properties dictated the dimensions of the camera's bellows and focusing mechanism. The latter works by inserting fixed spacer brackets between the bellows and camera body, allowing for the focal plane to be drawn nearer in preset increments. Loading the film is done by removing the body's top plate, similar to removing the bottom plate on a Leica. The next step is to print the viewfinder that will attach via the cold shoe mount. Sample images taken with the camera can be found below, along with documentation of the production process. Commercial development of this project is in planning with the intention to launch a Kickstarter campaign later this year, keep an eye on my Instagram for updates.
Feel free to drop me a line if you have any questions!