L A R G E F O R M A T P H O T O G R A P H Y
C A M E R A E Q U I P M E N T A N D A C C E S S O R I E S
CAMBO TWR 54, AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE ( PETER ) GOWLANDFLEX
A large format sheet film camera fabricated in Holland, by the renowned Cambo
camera company. This camera was especially designed to be used
for hand held " action " photography like fashion shoots.
Although it is called TWR ( twin eye reflex ) this is not a reflex camera ... The body doesn't contain
a mirror at all. The mirror is incorporated, in the 90 degree angled rotating viewfinder hood that
is clipped on, as an accessory item and also fits other Cambo large format 4x5 camera's.
The hood can be rotated for vertical orientated shooting, to do so best tripod mount the
camera on it's side and turn the view finder pointing upright. Handheld verticals are
possible, but I don't think that was what Cambo had in mind for this contraption.
The two bellows mounted on this particular camera are brand new. Cambo
was still able to sell me a new pair for this camera, remarkable indeed.
Two eyes it has, 2x Schneider Kreuznach F 1:5.5 Tele Arton 270mm, so the twin eye part of the name
is correct. The upper lens barrel does not have a shutter as that's the viewfinder lens, it does have
a diafragm to be able to check depth of field. The lower taking / recording lens is mounted in a
Copal Press No 1 shutter and fires without cocking first, which in my view is a real good thing
because that eliminates missed photographs caused by forgetfulness. Shutterspeeds are
ranging from B - 1 sec up till 1/ 125. The lenses are Coated and very clean indeed.
Parallax is taking care of by the Cam ( the Vee shaped slotted plate ) The cam can be taken
out by pulling the round knob and is calibrated for the 270mm lenses that are on this body.
The 4x5 film cassette / darkslide holder can be taken out and is constructed by the owner.
The original Cambo darkslide holder is a two fingered open claw, but unfortunately was
lost somewhere in history. Chances are this specific camera was used in combination
with a 120 or 220 spool roll film back as that speeds up the photographic process.
Originally the body " frame " of the Cambo TWR 54 is sprayed in a satin black
spatter paint. This camera is bead blasted to the bear aluminium metal.
By the standard of that era this was a light and fast to use large format camera. the camera
allows for real time depth of field viewing while shooting and that's something different
that comes in truly handy, for shooting non static live subjects in combination
with a large aperture for a spectacular shallow depth of field image.
I will complete the camera with a pair of Sitka Spruce handles with cable release, insert
a new Fresnel screen and do some minor cosmetics and tuning . After
that the camera will be sold to a new owner.
If you are interested or want more info, feel free to drop me a line at
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TWR rev 2021
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