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Tilted and Shifty - A tilt/shift lens the DIY way

I've wanted to make my own tilt/shift lens since I love looking at those photos where cities seem like miniature size.

Buying a proper tilt/shift lens is way too expensive for me so I bought a medium format Mir-3 lens for not so much. I figure I can also use it for other experiments in the future - it being my only medium format lens to date.

This is what I started out with:

* Sugru clay glue (didn't need it)

* Piece of inner tube for a bike

* Plastic lock straps

* Metal rings of different thickness, approximately 45 mm across (to pick from depending on what I needed)

* M42 extension/macro ring

* M42 mount SLR

* Medium format system lens, the Mir-3 65 mm


On the Mir there is a thingy that needs to be lifted for you to be able to adjust aperture settings. Above I've put a folded piece of electrical tape to keep it in position.

Here you can see the result of a very labour intensive process of pulling the rubber tubing to the Mir lens mount so it can be fastened with the plastic strap. But...

The tubing was stretched out of its limits so cracked. It may work with a tube of a larger size but instead I used the remaining piece. I cut it length-wise and wound it around the lens mount and then some so that it overlapped were the two ends met preventing light to seep inside. Below you can see the rubber tubing fastened to 1/ the lens mount and 2/ the M42 extension ring.

The two white straps are pulled really tight because when in use the lens will be tilted and pulled sideways and lengthways.

I subsequently removed the sky filter ring which I initially put there with giving lens stability in mind. I replaced it with electrical tape which is flexible and does not have hard edges which could wear holes in the rubber material.

I then treated myself to a great cup of coffee and a croissant before going out to try my new contraption.

Below follow some test images I took with my digital Fujifilm XE-1. The frame size on this camera is not full frame so the images are more tele than when I intend to use the lens on my M42 SLRs.

It did turn out really cool! I've already exposed one roll of Rollei Retro 400S with the lens on my Chinonflex SLR. It took me less than 30 minutes to finish the roll! I will get back to post images from this project.

Welcome to my Instagrams: #ourbooksmalmo #getourart and the Etsy shop getOurBooks filled with old cameras and their accessories.


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