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Custom Mounting Job 4 Your

6 inch Metrogon


The Metrogon: Legendary wide angle lens covering 90 wide open and 100 stopped down for an image circle of 364mm. They are available at bargain prices on ebay (under $75.00) and are one of the very best values available in extreme wide angle lenses for an 8x10. Indeed, $75 bucks is a far cry from the $2000+ the government spent on them in the 50's. If you purchase one be sure to get a coated version of the Metrogon.


Unlike most older wide angle lenses that require stopping down to cover 8x10, the Metrogon covers 8x10 wide open at f:6.3. Actually the Metrogon opens up beyond f:4 in the shutter but it will not cover 8x10 at f:5.6. In the photo to the right you can see a size comparison of a 240mm Symmar (not included) next to the Metrogon. The Metrogons beautiful sphere shaped elements are relatively thin making this lens extremely light for its size. It is a short wide bodied lenses that is a bit larger than those other compact f:6.8 and f:8 ex wa 8x10 lenses that require stopping down to cover but it is extreamely light and compact when compared to the other lenses that actually do cover 8x10 wide open. The Metrogon mounted in an Alphax shutter weighs in at less than half the weight of the 165mm SA and is only 65mm tall compared to the massive SA hight of 180mm.


The 165mm SA is a better lens but..... if its so big and so heavy that it never leaves your studio..... then it really doesn't matter how good it is when you are in the field and it is sitting on a shelf at home.  Besides, you've just got to love the look of the Metrogon. Additional info is available on the Metrogon Page. Please excuse the popups on the Metrogon page. It is not our web page so we have no control over the popups. The only lens that comes close to the Metrogons weight, speed and coverage is the SS-XL and it also is heavier and considerably taller than the Metrogon in an Alphax shutter, not to mention one heck of a lot more expensive.


This lens cannot be mounted into a Copal 3 shutter. It is possible to use an Ilex (see below) but at LensN2shutter we prefer to use the Alphax shutter for the Metrogon.

Why an Alphax?


Alphax was the shutter of choice by Bausch & Lomb for factory mounting their improved version of the Metrogon, the truly rare and virtually unheard of 100 B&L Series VI  Extreme Wide Angle lens.  As you can see in the attached photos of my personal 138mm and 175mm versions of the B&L Series VI  lenses below, they are factory mounted in Alphax shutters. Alphax shutters will provide you with as close to a factory Bausch & Lomb mount as possible.


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On the factory 175mm there is a slot in the front lens housing for both the shutter speeds and aperture settings. The 6 inch Metrogon example photographed for this auction was improved with the aperture settings moved to the side of the shutter. We have further improved the mount and now relocate the shutter speeds to the side well as the aperture scale similar to how the 138mm was done. This eliminates the need for cutting the slot in the face of the front lens housing.


This is a particularly difficult mount and so it is slightly more expensive than a standard mount. Even the master craftsman himself Steve Grimes said "I have never seen another one of these successfully installed into a useable photo shutter, although these lenses are almost common military surplus". Sadly Steve is no longer with us. Steve was a true Giant in the large format community. He tackled the Metrogon mount in an Ilex shutter and not only reworked the lens group mountings but also enlarged and rethreaded the group mounting holes on the shutter as well as modified the shutter internally for additional clearance to allow it to accept the mighty Metrogon.

 

A complex mount to be sure. This is no doubt why SKGrimes no loner provide a link to their Metrogon Mount Page when the web page was reorganized after Steve's passing. Fortunately it was not deleted from the server so you can still have a look at his fine work by clicking on the link above. Steve is truly missed but fortunately his legacy lives on in the company he founded - SKGrimes. If you would like to have your Metrogon mounted into an Alphax shutter, please contact us through the link provided below for our current pricing on the mount. Occasionally we do have Metrogon lenses in stock if you need a lens as well. If you would prefer to have your Metrogon mounted into an Ilex shutter then I suggest you contact Adam at skgrimes@skgrimes.com. I am sure they would be happy to do the mount for you. Be sure and tell Adam that Tim said hello.

 

 

 

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