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05-16-2021, 05:12 AM   #1
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Bellows

Hello,
1. Is it correct, that there is no way the Bellows Unit III can be connected with a slide copier ?
2. The slide copier always has to be mounted on a bellows system, or are there ways to work around this ?
Thanks for suggestions

05-16-2021, 06:28 AM - 1 Like   #2
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The bellows is mounted between the camera and the lens, the slide copier (which has its own bellows) is connected to the front of the lens, with or without a step-up or step-down ring.

Pentax Auto Bellows A / Slide copier A
Pentax auto slide bellows A, Pentax Slide copier A instruction manual, user manual

Pentax Bellows II
Pentax Bellows II instruction manual, user manual
05-16-2021, 06:38 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kobayashi.K Quote
The bellows is mounted between the camera and the lens, the slide copier (which has its own bellows) is connected to the front of the lens, with or without a step-up or step-down ring.

Pentax Auto Bellows A / Slide copier A
Pentax auto slide bellows A, Pentax Slide copier A instruction manual, user manual

Pentax Bellows II
Pentax Bellows II instruction manual, user manual
Yes, I know the traditional setup. Therfor the question: there is no way to work around the bellows - I suppose no.
And the other one: Bellows Unit III officially is not compatible with the slide copier as mentioned on the review side - so there is no way around this either ?
05-16-2021, 06:47 AM   #4
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You want a setup with the lens mounted on the camera without the bellows in between?

05-16-2021, 06:56 AM - 1 Like   #5
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As a proud owner of a "Bellows A / Slide Copier A" set that I purchased as a student for some € 300 more than 35 years ago I look at the pictures of the Bellows Unit III and I see no reason, why it should be impossible to attach the slide copier A to a bellows III, unless they changed the threadsize of the front cover screw of the rail. It is clear that it would not fit on bellows II, as this earlier model had a completely different design, but the rails of bellows III, bellows K, bellows M and bellows A look like exactly the same. My reference for this statement: https://www.pentaxforums.com/accessoryreviews/pentax-bellows-unit-iii-k.html


BTW, bellows/slide copier M and A are mechanically identical for sure, I remember back in 1984 I insisted on ordering the A Version instead of purchasing the on-stock M version, just because I was so eager to have everything labelled "A" to match my "Super A" (US: Program Plus) and my smc Pentax-A lenses.

Last edited by UMC; 05-16-2021 at 07:11 AM.
05-16-2021, 07:02 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kobayashi.K Quote
You want a setup with the lens mounted on the camera without the bellows in between?
Maybe, the point is, I have the Pentax Bellows unit III, and I have a Pentax slide copier, and they don`t fit together - there is no mechanism to mount the slide copier. The description of the bellows unit III on this forum says, that it is not designed to work together with the slide finder. So the question is whether I have to buy another bellow, eg an earlier version or whether there still is a way to work around this.

Beside of this: on my slide copier, ther is no strip / pole /flange (https://www.ebay.de/itm/184712318862?hash=item2b01b64f8e:g:NowAAOSwY0BgT3iP vs https://www.ebay.de/itm/254810246730?hash=item3b53dfce4a:g:fEYAAOSwkYpf2qjt >>> see : https://www.ebay.de/itm/124703863596?hash=item1d08edf32c:g:XQ4AAOSwXxVgjDze >>> the part to fix the copier on the Bellow system is missing. Do you think with the pole it would work ?

Last edited by SME; 05-16-2021 at 07:19 AM.
05-16-2021, 07:11 AM   #7
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What I also read is that the Auto Bellows A has another rail width than K and M.
Pentax auto Bellows differences??? - PentaxForums.com

Edit - Here is some more info about the naming:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/accessoryreviews/pentax-bellows-unit-iii-k.html


Last edited by Kobayashi.K; 05-16-2021 at 07:36 AM.
05-16-2021, 07:23 AM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kobayashi.K Quote
What I also read is that the Auto Bellows A has another rail width than K and M.

Pentax auto Bellows differences??? - PentaxForums.com
Thanks, this is surprising. However, even if the shape of the X-rail is slightly different, it still be possible to attach a slide copier, but it may require milling or filing off some parts - see detailed pictures here Microsoft OneDrive - Access files anywhere. Create docs with free Office Online.

QuoteOriginally posted by SME Quote
Beside of this: on my slide copier, ther is no strip / pole /flange (https://www.ebay.de/itm/184712318862?hash=item2b01b64f8e:g:NowAAOSwY0BgT3iP vs https://www.ebay.de/itm/254810246730?hash=item3b53dfce4a:g:fEYAAOSwkYpf2qjt >>> see : https://www.ebay.de/itm/124703863596?hash=item1d08edf32c:g:XQ4AAOSwXxVgjDze >>> the part to fix the copier on the Bellow system is missing. Do you think with the pole it would work ?
Here is, where it gets complicated, unless you have a friend with a very well equipped mechanical workshop....
You need something to adjust the distance between the lens and the slide - and also, the slide must be held perfectly parallel to the focal plane of the lens, therefore I would see it as mandatory, to attach the slide copier on a pin or rail and attach this part firmly to the rail of the bellows.

Last edited by UMC; 05-16-2021 at 07:38 AM.
05-16-2021, 07:39 AM   #9
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I would also make an adapter myself, but one other point to consider is the type of thread that is used on the front of the rail.

The pole on the slide copier is there only to extend the length of the rail, and not for focusing. Focusing is done with the blocks on the rail.

What you also can do is to mount a second bellows on the rail reversed, and mount the slide copier in front.

https://wrb.home.xs4all.nl/Photos_PF/K70_0169_02_500.JPG

This is with a custom made film holder though.

Last edited by Kobayashi.K; 05-16-2021 at 08:16 AM.
05-16-2021, 08:11 AM   #10
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The work around would be re-machining the rail and the foot on the slide copier to fit. Not being able to examine the parts I have no idea what that would entail. The bellows rail maybe larger or smaller, missing the slot and have a different thread size and pitch for the front screw.

The other thing is the bellows rail is shorter: 135mm vs 170mm maximum extension. This could add more challenges with a crop sensor.

Note: The Slide Copier A does not fit on the Auto Bellows (M42) - the thread pitch is different.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kobayashi.K Quote
What you also can do is to mount a second bellows on the rail reversed, and mount the slide copier in front.
This involves buying another bellows - so simply buy one that is compatible with the already owned copier

Last edited by Not a Number; 05-16-2021 at 08:23 AM.
05-16-2021, 08:17 AM   #11
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Phantastic discussion, and many thanks to Kobayashi and UMC !!! Coming back from the journey, isn`t it easiest than to buy a setup of bellow and copier which is complete as an unity ?
When buying the M42 bellow pus slide copier, I need an M42-K adapter to adapt the K1, correct ?
05-16-2021, 08:36 AM - 1 Like   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by SME Quote
Phantastic discussion, and many thanks to Kobayashi and UMC !!! Coming back from the journey, isn`t it easiest than to buy a setup of bellow and copier which is complete as an unity ?
When buying the M42 bellow pus slide copier, I need an M42-K adapter to adapt the K1, correct ?
I have only experience with APSC but the bellows between camera and lens can can give too much enlargement even when fully contracted. However, when the lens is directly mounted on the camera, and the bellows is left out, you are missing a support point for the camera on the rail, which must be constructed by yourself.

I can be wrong, but think the M42 bellows has a slightly smaller diameter, personally I would go for the K or M bellows.
05-16-2021, 09:45 AM - 1 Like   #13
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Of course, buying a complete set is the hassle free approach. I have to say, I love the look of the complete set.

A few practical hints from a long time owner:
  • Using the bellows/slide copier combo with APS-C is nearly impossible. I couldn't find any lens that allowed me a full coverage of the slide frame within the limits of the copier and the bellows.
  • With the K1 theoretically it is easy - everthing (almost) as it was in analog times.

BUT: The K1 collides with the rear part of the bellows A (see again Microsoft OneDrive - Access files anywhere. Create docs with free Office Online.). In order to circumvent this, you need a small extension tube. I use the smallest one from the Auto extension tube set K.
If you purchase another bellows, you might also encounter issues with the protuding part of the pentaprism.

Last but not least: If you want to use this combo for digitizing slides, you need a lot of time.... I prefer using a dedicated slidescanner which gives you the benefit of automatic dust removal. Only for the very few underexposed or otherwise problematic slides I set up the K1 with the bellows.
05-16-2021, 10:29 AM   #14
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What about digitalizing negatives with this setup ?
05-16-2021, 11:22 AM   #15
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I confess, I never did it, because

A) I had only some 20 negative films compared to 15k slides
B) My Epson Perfection V550 performed quite well and the scan software (either Epson scan or Vuescan) is good in doing the negative/positive conversion and refreshing of faded colors
C) The handling of stripes in the slide duplicator is not convenient
D) There is no ICE dust removal... You won't believe it how many specks you find even though the material has been dusted off with compressed air immediately before the scan.
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