4×5″ Collodion in the Field? I’m ready for it!

As mentioned before I tried to modify a standard Fidelity Elite 4×5″ film holder I bought together with the Linhof Master Technika. We seriously messed up the holder beyond use haha! The room for manoeuvring just was too small (the tools were too big for the job, whatever) but the plastic just melted while trying to cut out the dividing section to make a plate fit. Mission failed.



But luckily a holder came on my path (thank you Jeroen!) especially made for shooting wet plates and other alternative thingies that fits a 4×5″ film camera. This back is made by In Camera Industries.
“In Camera Industries produces sturdy, functional, industry-specific tools for the in-camera photographer. Born from a need for durability and accessibility, each product is created for the most professional of image makers, with the ease of use for the novice as well. Established in 2011 by photographer Jody Ake.”


This means I can finally start using my new hotty out in the field! Not sure when that will be because the next outside shoot I have planned (2nd of June) will (partially) be on black glass so 8×10″ / 10×10″ plates. BUT, surely the following one will be with my new camera making 4×5″ clear glass ambrotypes solely.

Edit: Someone asked me how the inside of this holder looks, especially the ridge. I made a photo of it and will post it here as well. The ridge that holds the plate is approx. 1mm thick on all sides.


I also intend to use the darkbox again instead of the tent. Makes it a little more compact on location and, most importantly, I will be able to handle it on my own. No need for someone else to close the zipper, set it up etc. I can now travel on my own to make images. The only disadvantage of the darkbox is its size. The inner working space is quite compact and my large silver nitrate box barely fitted in while working in a handy manner at the same time. So, I thought it would be wise to have a smaller silver box made. It would also save in space and weight, needing less silver nitrate and all. I emailed John Brewer who also made the other two boxes I have and fortunately he had one laying around for a max. size of 5×7″. Perfect!



Now, all I need is some proper weather..(un)fortunately no money in the world can buy that 😉


  1. Interesting holder! I might try the modified rayko holder for modern tintypes soon! ha i’m cheap haha but that ake holder looks very sturdy and will last for long!

    1. Nothing wrong with being cheap, Jef 😉 It was fun modifying the fidelity back (or rather, it was fun watching Bart do it) but it just didn’t work. I don’t have the time to keep modifying stuff so decided to blow the money on it. The holder looks good and fits well on the camera. Good luck tuning yours 😉

      1. I bought extra 4×5 holders for this purpose but i might have problem getting the tools. if ever i decide on going for the tintypes i might buy a holder or two on raykophoto. those modified holders seems to be nice. 😀

      2. They look nice indeed, certainly for the money. Too bas they can only hold tintypes, no glass, although you might be able to modify them.

      3. I’ll ask them if they can hold glass before buying. in a few months though! i had stretched my pockets for the 8×10 and it will be in my hands in a few months. 😦 it was shipped to manila not directly here!! i can’t wait. more sleepless nights haha

  2. i bought a similiar holder to yours, from the U.S
    i also made a mess out of a fidelity holder, so chose to spend the money on a proper plate holder. $250 dollars including postage of $30 so i was happy enough with that.

    1. Haha, hoped I wasn’t the only one to have messed up the fidelity adapter in order to make it fit 🙂 Never heard of the CDD adapters, they also look pretty nice and well built. Money well spent!

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