Quick guide
Speed Graphic Anniversary "23"

for German edition click here





First steps how to operate the Anniversary "baby" Speed Graphic.

First of all how to open the camera.

 There is a hidden knob on top of the camera housing. Press it down and the drop bed does what it is suppose to do. It will drop down and you only need to give it a little push to get it locked in steady position. Now you have a direct view on the f= 4,5 / 101 mm Kodak Ektar lens which is surrounded by the Kodak Supermatic shutter. Shutter and lens are mounted into the lens board which is kept by the front standard. By squeezing both lock handles together and drawing the lens standard  against the infinity stops, the lens will be in direct infinity position ready to take pictures of far away objects. However it will be clear that it takes a few more settings before you can shoot your first picture.

Why are there two shutters?

This camera as well as most of its family Graflex cameras are rather unique because of the fact that they are provided with two shutters. That means they are accommodated with a front shutter as well as a back shutter. The front shutter (Graphex Supermatic) mounted in the lens standard is a common mechanical leaf shutter (built around the lens group while the fastest shutter speed is 1/400 sec. The second one is a focal plane shutter and exists out of a "build in" large piece of cloth accommodated with 5 slits of different length. This special opaque or light tight shutter fabric is stored on the top roller while a coupled escapement assembly makes it possible to release. The other roller can be found on the bottom and contains a powerful string build inside the shaft. The spring power can be increased by turning the centre spindle on the right bottom side of the camera with the tension knob which can be set from 1 to 6.  When first wound the upper roller and then released, the spring power draws one section of the focal plane shutter down to the lower roller. One of the above mentioned five slits will expose the film.  The largest one is 9,3 cm long and significantly larger than the 5,5 cm film opening on the camera back. This big slit is situated almost at the top of the shutter and suitable for Time exposures. The next slit is 5 cm and each of the other slits are about 1/2 of their predecessor. In combination with the tension setting of the spring in the lower roller, 24 exposure times are available. The fastest shutter time is 1/1000 sec, reason why these cameras are called "SPEED" Graphic.








How to take your first picture
using the front shutter

If you want to take a photo using the front shutter, the back shutter (Focal Plane) should be positioned on "O" (open).
Vice versa, if you want to take a photo using the back shutter, the front shutter should be in open (T) time position.


First of all setting the front shutter

Cock the shutter of the front shutter clockwise and set the rimmed disc on the desired exposure time and set the desired aperture.

Secondly setting the back focal plane shutter

Set the focal plane shutter on O by triggering the shutter until the "O" appears in the little window.
If that does not work because the shutter does not react, wind the shutter one turn and the "O" will be visible in the window. The shutter has now been manoeuvred into the "zero" position in which the slit is completely open. In this position the front shutter is enabled to expose the film.
The film whether in sheet film holder or in a roll film holder is covered by a dark slide to prevent unwanted exposure.

Using the back or Focal Plane shutter.

First of all setting the front shutter open.

Set the front shutter in open position by cocking the Supermatic shutter and turning the rimmed disc with the red dot on T.
trip the shutter and the shutter will stay in open position. Check that! Open the viewing hood. Check if shutter is in open position by aiming the camera to a well illuminated subject. If both  shutters are open you'll see the subject upside down on the ground glass.

Secondly setting the back shutter

Now you are sure that the front shutter is in permanent open position, be aware that the focal plane shutter is set on the desired exposure time by winding or releasing the focal plane shutter shutter until the desired figure in the window is visible.
All this has to be done without plane film holder or roll film holder.
Now the camera has been prepared for the first exposure, mount the Film carrier to the camera back.

Please realise that the film carrier is still covered by the dark slide. No light can blur your film as long as the dark slide covers the film.
Check all the settings including rangefinder distance, exposure time and aperture. Focus on the subject by using the focusing knobs on the front of the track . Draw the dark slide and release the focal plane shutter release M. After exposure slide the dark-slide back into the film holder.
Remove and turn the film holder around. Slide sheet film- holder back between ground glass holder and camera back or wind next frame on the film holder by turning the winding knob.
 Wind shutter and draw dark-slide to fire the next photo.
Both front and back shutter are in closed situation now and you can wind the roll film to the next frame.
Before removing the roll film holder or the plane film holder, always slide dark slide back to prevent blurring your last exposure.


Anniversary 6x9 Deutsche Kurzgebrauchsanleitung / for German edition click here
Graflex Cameras Overview