Pinholes in bellows etc. : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

My rubberised darkroom blackout blinds developed a few pinholes a while ago and turned my darkroom into a multi-faceted camera obscura. I stumbled on a "formula" for re-rubberising them using a mixture of latex based glue (Copydex) and indian ink; about a 50/50 mix, but the ink needs to be added slowly to the Copydex while stirring, otherwise the mixture curdles.

This worked a treat on the blinds, and I can wholeheartedly recommend it. It might even work for shutter blinds. But now my 5x4 has developed a couple of pinholes in the bellows, and I was going to try the above treatment on the inside of the bellows. Before I go ahead, does anyone have a tried and tested recipe or remedy for repairing camera bellows?

-- Pete Andrews (, April 18, 2000


I patched a few holes in my bellows and also a hole in the lens board with black silicone. Works very good.

-- Don Sparks (, April 18, 2000.

The "Liquid Neoprene" sold in diving shops for repairing wetsuits is good stuff. Some of the black silicone I've used would work on a bellows, most would be too stiff or wouldn't adhere to the inside flocking. If you go that way I'd recommend testing on an unimportant pseudo-bellows first.

Copydex has a very high sulpher content. It does spectacular damage to paper after a year or so of contact, so I wouldn't want it near cardboard stiffeners or leather.

-- Struan Gray (, April 18, 2000.

As far as I know if you use book binders glue or some thing like that around the hole, then secure a piece of light tight material, such as a pice dnated from a camera whose bellows need replacing or even changing bag material that should work. Or you could always fork out #45 or so for a new bellows from Camera Bellows.

-- David Kirk (, April 18, 2000.

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