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Cinema Products XR-35


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#1 Roman Alexander

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Posted 20 December 2005 - 04:25 PM

Hello,
Our film co-op has come into possession of a Cinema Products XR-35 35mm movie camera in BNCR mount. As some of you may know these cameras were made using converted Mitchell NC movements. We are looking for anyone who can relate their practical experience using these cameras and any related maintenance issues, weak links, limitations, etc. We are also looking for manuals, schematics, accessories, groundglasses, etc. Can the cameras be made quiet enought to do sound recording? Can a PL conversion be done without hitting the mirror shutter? Is a video tap practical? I believe Bob Auguste did the electronics for these cameras. Does anyone have his contact information? Any help would be appreciated.
Thank you,
Roman Alexander
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#2 Stephen Williams

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Posted 21 December 2005 - 03:52 AM

Hello,
Our film co-op has come into possession of a Cinema Products XR-35 35mm movie camera in BNCR mount. As some of you may know these cameras were made using converted Mitchell NC movements. We are looking for anyone who can relate their practical experience using these cameras and any related maintenance issues, weak links, limitations, etc. We are also looking for manuals, schematics, accessories, groundglasses, etc. Can the cameras be made quiet enought to do sound recording? Can a PL conversion be done without hitting the mirror shutter? Is a video tap practical? I believe Bob Auguste did the electronics for these cameras. Does anyone have his contact information? Any help would be appreciated.
Thank you,
Roman Alexander



Hi,

The camera should be quiet enough. One was used for Rocky.
A PL conversion will be fairly expensive and there will be issues with many lenses especially if you go S35. There should be enough BNCR lenses around at reasonable cost. I have seen Video taps added, custom work is always expensive!

Stephen
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#3 Bruce McNaughton

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Posted 26 December 2005 - 11:48 PM

Hi

I have intimate knowledge of the XR35 having owned two of them. I bought #8 direct from Cinema Products and later bought #15 second hand. I bought the second one not because I liked the camera but for cheap spares. In fact I pulled both cameras out of their blimps and re-built one as an animation unit and sold the other as a reflex NC. Of course I had to add viewfinders...

The XR35 was always a very noisy camera. Mine was sacked from a feature film 1 week in... The biggest issue was the motor. The guys at C.P. told me years down the track that this was the noisiest motor they had ever had the embarrassment to install... It was also underpowered and I remember my last shoot with #8 where I was praying for the motor to hold on for just one more roll of film. It was overheating and smoking...

A PL installation will not be a problem as far as the mirror goes. The mirror is set at 50º instead of the conventional 45º so there is clearance. But the BNCR mount is moulded in rubber and this forms a sound seal of sorts with the blimp. You would have to copy this if you want to shoot sound footage.

Cinema Products were supporting some spares up to a few years ago. I bought a pair of ground glasses from them in 1995. No motors available of course.

I got to know Ed DiGuilio very well in the years before his passing. He was always a little embarrassed about the XR35 but I applaud him for being at the forefront of 'lightweight' camera design. He made only 25 XR35 units.

Anyone want a blimp?

Regards

Bruce

Hi

I have intimate knowledge of the XR35 having owned two of them. I bought #8 direct from Cinema Products and later bought #15 second hand. I bought the second one not because I liked the camera but for cheap spares. In fact I pulled both cameras out of their blimps and re-built one as an animation unit and sold the other as a reflex NC. Of course I had to add viewfinders...

The XR35 was always a very noisy camera. Mine was sacked from a feature film 1 week in... The biggest issue was the motor. The guys at C.P. told me years down the track that this was the noisiest motor they had ever had the embarrassment to install... It was also underpowered and I remember my last shoot with #8 where I was praying for the motor to hold on for just one more roll of film. It was overheating and smoking...

A PL installation will not be a problem as far as the mirror goes. The mirror is set at 50º instead of the conventional 45º so there is clearance. But the BNCR mount is moulded in rubber and this forms a sound seal of sorts with the blimp. You would have to copy this if you want to shoot sound footage.

Cinema Products were supporting some spares up to a few years ago. I bought a pair of ground glasses from them in 1995. No motors available of course.

I got to know Ed DiGuilio very well in the years before his passing. He was always a little embarrassed about the XR35 but I applaud him for being at the forefront of 'lightweight' camera design. He made only 25 XR35 units.

Anyone want a blimp?

Regards

Bruce

Hi

I have intimate knowledge of the XR35 having owned two of them. I bought #8 direct from Cinema Products and later bought #15 second hand. I bought the second one not because I liked the camera but for cheap spares. In fact I pulled both cameras out of their blimps and re-built one as an animation unit and sold the other as a reflex NC. Of course I had to add viewfinders...

The XR35 was always a very noisy camera. Mine was sacked from a feature film 1 week in... The biggest issue was the motor. The guys at C.P. told me years down the track that this was the noisiest motor they had ever had the embarrassment to install... It was also underpowered and I remember my last shoot with #8 where I was praying for the motor to hold on for just one more roll of film. It was overheating and smoking...

A PL installation will not be a problem as far as the mirror goes. The mirror is set at 50º instead of the conventional 45º so there is clearance. But the BNCR mount is moulded in rubber and this forms a sound seal of sorts with the blimp. You would have to copy this if you want to shoot sound footage.

Cinema Products were supporting some spares up to a few years ago. I bought a pair of ground glasses from them in 1995. No motors available of course.

I got to know Ed DiGuilio very well in the years before his passing. He was always a little embarrassed about the XR35 but I applaud him for being at the forefront of 'lightweight' camera design. He made only 25 XR35 units.

Anyone want a blimp?

Regards

Bruce
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#4 Mike Redding

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 09:27 PM

Hi

I have intimate knowledge of the XR35 having owned two of them. I bought #8 direct from Cinema Products and later bought #15 second hand. I bought the second one not because I liked the camera but for cheap spares. In fact I pulled both cameras out of their blimps and re-built one as an animation unit and sold the other as a reflex NC. Of course I had to add viewfinders...

The XR35 was always a very noisy camera. Mine was sacked from a feature film 1 week in... The biggest issue was the motor. The guys at C.P. told me years down the track that this was the noisiest motor they had ever had the embarrassment to install... It was also underpowered and I remember my last shoot with #8 where I was praying for the motor to hold on for just one more roll of film. It was overheating and smoking...

A PL installation will not be a problem as far as the mirror goes. The mirror is set at 50º instead of the conventional 45º so there is clearance. But the BNCR mount is moulded in rubber and this forms a sound seal of sorts with the blimp. You would have to copy this if you want to shoot sound footage.

Cinema Products were supporting some spares up to a few years ago. I bought a pair of ground glasses from them in 1995. No motors available of course.

I got to know Ed DiGuilio very well in the years before his passing. He was always a little embarrassed about the XR35 but I applaud him for being at the forefront of 'lightweight' camera design. He made only 25 XR35 units.

Anyone want a blimp?

Regards

Bruce

Hi

I have intimate knowledge of the XR35 having owned two of them. I bought #8 direct from Cinema Products and later bought #15 second hand. I bought the second one not because I liked the camera but for cheap spares. In fact I pulled both cameras out of their blimps and re-built one as an animation unit and sold the other as a reflex NC. Of course I had to add viewfinders...

The XR35 was always a very noisy camera. Mine was sacked from a feature film 1 week in... The biggest issue was the motor. The guys at C.P. told me years down the track that this was the noisiest motor they had ever had the embarrassment to install... It was also underpowered and I remember my last shoot with #8 where I was praying for the motor to hold on for just one more roll of film. It was overheating and smoking...

A PL installation will not be a problem as far as the mirror goes. The mirror is set at 50º instead of the conventional 45º so there is clearance. But the BNCR mount is moulded in rubber and this forms a sound seal of sorts with the blimp. You would have to copy this if you want to shoot sound footage.

Cinema Products were supporting some spares up to a few years ago. I bought a pair of ground glasses from them in 1995. No motors available of course.

I got to know Ed DiGuilio very well in the years before his passing. He was always a little embarrassed about the XR35 but I applaud him for being at the forefront of 'lightweight' camera design. He made only 25 XR35 units.

Anyone want a blimp?

Regards

Bruce

Hi

I have intimate knowledge of the XR35 having owned two of them. I bought #8 direct from Cinema Products and later bought #15 second hand. I bought the second one not because I liked the camera but for cheap spares. In fact I pulled both cameras out of their blimps and re-built one as an animation unit and sold the other as a reflex NC. Of course I had to add viewfinders...

The XR35 was always a very noisy camera. Mine was sacked from a feature film 1 week in... The biggest issue was the motor. The guys at C.P. told me years down the track that this was the noisiest motor they had ever had the embarrassment to install... It was also underpowered and I remember my last shoot with #8 where I was praying for the motor to hold on for just one more roll of film. It was overheating and smoking...

A PL installation will not be a problem as far as the mirror goes. The mirror is set at 50º instead of the conventional 45º so there is clearance. But the BNCR mount is moulded in rubber and this forms a sound seal of sorts with the blimp. You would have to copy this if you want to shoot sound footage.

Cinema Products were supporting some spares up to a few years ago. I bought a pair of ground glasses from them in 1995. No motors available of course.

I got to know Ed DiGuilio very well in the years before his passing. He was always a little embarrassed about the XR35 but I applaud him for being at the forefront of 'lightweight' camera design. He made only 25 XR35 units.

Anyone want a blimp?

Regards

Bruce


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#5 Mike Redding

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 10:35 PM

I'm surprised by the comments.

Sorry I missed them years earlier.....If you can install a PL mount on the XR35 that's great news. I had NO idea only 25 were made. My is labeled number 35. I knew Ed as well, eventually buying the remaining FX35 cameras and parts after my own FX35 needed support.

About the XR35:
I used one for years and did not experience a noisy motor, in fact we had to put our ears up to the blimp body to hear it run. I did go through the 30v batteries quickly. I built a "shore power" 30v DC adapter and 3x12v gel cell battery box replacing batteries as needed. They are cheap compared to other choices. Shot for 20 years with this XR35 and power configuration with no issues. A quite camera beating Arri BL IVs with no problem. I never had smoke coming out of the motor case. In the early 2000's I bought a 2 perf Mitchell conversion kit for a short and had to hone in the 2 perf cams to the Mitchell movement. I worked for days with conversations with CP engineers then at Steadicam and to retired engineers from CP. I was warned don't go to far or it will rattle. It turned fine in hand but the night before the shoot at 2:30am in the morning, I installed it and it ran fine. At 8:00am on location we loaded film and it ran well. A 1000 foot mag at 2 perf lasts 22 minutes. A young director didn't understand "cut". The camera was running out of sync after 4 hours and only 1 mag. Unusual. I opened the motor cover and the motor was hot. I had not honed in the cams to bearings enough. I erred on the side of caution.

Lunch was called early and a fan was on the motor. I called cut from then on and we made the shoot in 2 perf with no problems for the next days. Shooting "film" not rolling on and on like video. My XR35 has a 20-120 with a BNCR mount and I agree, no reason to change it. The video tap is in the door and I've been in worse body contortions with video cameras than with the XR35 with it's straight through view finder. I've shot in the US and internationally with number 35; and when a famous NY network weatherman walked on set for a commercial endorsement shoot, saw the camera on the Fisher he said..."Oh, this is serious business".

"Shoot film, be serious"

Mike
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