Seneca View 8×10 – current status

Alright, I’ll admit it: I’m excited to start working on this camera again. Brought all the bits inside today and laid them out:

*Another* project...

The camera is a beaut. Really, aside from needing a new bellows and new extension rail, it’s just a refinishing job. I need to drill and tap the post rivets from the rear box (I have the tap, and bought the needed #36 drill bit today). I’ve already ground and replaced the original, broken glass. The back’s been completely refinished. Now I just need to brave the cold in the garage and start working forward on it.

This is symptomatic of a broader issue: I’m in love with these old wooden field cameras. They’re elegant, and speak to a time when process and quality in design were more than just advertising slogans. That they’re still completely usable after 100+ years is amazing to me – my Canon 20D is obsolete by years.

Now, I need to collect parts to finish the base plate on the Asanuma half plate conversion (likely tomorrow) – I shipped the original bellows to Sandeha today. I have the glass for the Eastman Empire State whole plate camera, and would like to get moving on that project. But this Seneca is dear to my heart – I have a soft spot for Senecas. And this one’s gorgeous. It’ll get a new bellows ultimately, and Dean Williams is helping spec the replacement gear rack for the rear extension. Going to be fun to get started on again. And, until then, it’s so much fun to just gaze at…

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