• Why was the BLACKJACKET™ Focusing
The BLACKJACKET™ was born from frustration. Frustration
with old, hot, heavy, "horse blanket" dark cloths which seemed to
require that one be an octopus in all but the most ideal conditions. I was
also dissatisfied with contemporary efforts to deal with these distractions
by using clothespins, Velcro™ and a lengthy list of fabrics poorly suited
for working in the outdoors. I tried them all and was convinced there had to
be a better way. The BLACKJACKET™ focusing cloth eliminates
all these frustrations. back to top
• Can I use a larger BLACKJACKET™ with
a smaller camera?
Yes. For instance, using the 46" 5x7 model with
a 4x5 field camera. Since BLACKJACKET™ is secured
to the camera back with an adjustable elastic, the neck will form a tight
seal around the camera back, whether it is round, triangular, or square.
Matching the neck and camera cabinet size was more important with the
earliest models which featured some stiff vinyl
to prevent fabric wear over time.
While great for minimizing wear, we found the strips impeded gathering
of the neck fabric. So in later designs the vinyl strips were eliminated.
This improved the performance of larger neck sizes with smaller cameras.
We have refined the design of the neck three times already in six years,
each time improving peformance. We continue to look at ways to improve
The newest style neck is extremely versatile, easily shrinking from 60" to 0" so that an
8x10 model can easily be used with a 4x5 field camera. If
you need a custom
an odd-sized, smaller or larger camera, we can build it for you. back
• What are
the specifications for the various BLACKJACKET™ focusing
There is no difference in the specifications for
the ORIGINAL style 4x5/5x7 BLACKJACKET™. The new 46" neck shrinks down to 0" quickly, permitting the cloth to be used with 2-1/4" x 3-1/4" to 5" x 7" cameras and anything in between. Each weighs
8 ounces and folds to the approximate volume of a softball.
The same is
true for the HYBRID style 4x5/5x7. The new 46" neck shrinks down to 0" quickly, permitting the cloth to be used with 2-1/4" x 3-1/4" to 5" x 7" cameras and anything in between. Each HYBRID weighs
17 ounces. The design of the 8x10 model employs additional fabric that add to its girth and weight. See the following list
Digital SLR BLACKJACKET™ has a collar with a
maximum opening of 18", which is designed to slide over front
end of fast telephoto lenses, but then synch down to match the barrel
size. This eases image reviews on your camera's LCD screen in bright
The neck of the 4x5 BLACKJACKET™ focusing
cloth has an opening that measures 46 inches. It was designed with 4x5 and 5x7
cameras in mind, but if your camera back has a combined height and
width of less than
23 inches (total exterior measurement cannot exceed 40 inches), it should
work. With the neck fully gathered, the collar of the standard BLACKJACKET™ shrinks
to an opening of 0".
Each model BLACKJACKET™ now is equipped with
dual adjustment points in the upper left and lower right corners of the
collar to secure your focusing
cloth to the camera.
BLACKJACKET™ focusing cloth is identical to
the 4x5 model and the 8x10 BLACKJACKET™ has
a 60-inch collar, so that it can be occasionally used with a 4x5. It weighs 13
ounces in the ORIGINAL style and 23 ounces in the HYBRID style.
We also stock an Ultra Large Format line of BLACKJACKET™ focusing
cloths in 72", 84" and 105" neck sizes. back
• Can I rotate my
camera back with the BLACKJACKET™ in place?
Yes. With the BLACKJACKET™ attached to the camera
back, simply pull it forward
over the camera, essentially turning it inside out. This will make
camera back. Then return the BLACKJACKET™ to
its original position for focusing. back to top
• Can I insert a
film holder with the BLACKJACKET™ in place?
Yes. It is possible to leave the BLACKJACKET™ in
place during an exposure, (to prevent light from reaching the film through
the gap in the film holder), but care should be taken to ensure that
no excess fabric gets between the
film holder and camera back when inserting the film holder,
as this may introduce light leaks as well. To check for this problem,
over the camera, in effect turning it inside out. When you have determined
that there are no problems, return it to its normal position, close your
pull the dark slide. If you prefer to remove the BLACKJACKET™ after
composing your image, it is easy to do so without disturbing
your composition. Simply loosen the toggle, relax the elastic
carefully remove the neck from the camera back. Personally, I've
typically removed my BLACKJACKET™ prior to making
exposures, with no ill effects, but common wisdom says I testing my luck
and should opt to leave it on for added insurance against light leaks. back
• How do I use a magnifying
loupe with the BLACKJACKET™ focusing cloth?
Though quite simple, this concept often seems to baffle first-time
users. Most photographers wear a loupe around their neck on a cord.
in this manner, insert your head into the BLACKJACKET™, and
arms through the sleeves from the outside (as shown in the
demo), then reach back
toward your neck to grasp the loupe and pull it forward to the ground glass,
thereby maintaining the desired dark environment while focusing. back to
• How much does the BLACKJACKET™ focusing
ORIGINAL 4x5/5x7 BLACKJACKET™ style
weighs a mere 8 ounces, making it ideal for backpacking. The 8x10 BLACKJACKET™ is
considerably larger in comparison, yet still only weighs 13 ounces. The
HYBRID style BLACKJACKET™ weighs roughly twice
what its ORIGINAL counterpart does (17 ounces for DSLR, 4x5/5x7 and 23 ounces for the 8x10 respectively). This is because the waterproof/breathable
sandwich used for the
back panel is
a heavier material than the
"aluminized" nylon. Want more information? Check out our model-by-model
• What is the ORIGINAL BLACKJACKET™ focusing
cloth made of?
The ORIGINAL BLACKJACKET™ is fabricated of a lightweight,
black, nylon tafetta with an aluminized polyester coating that is similar
to that used in popular film changing tents. The HYBRID BLACKJACKET™ employs
a water-resistant/breathable fabric sandwich (white on outside, black
on inside) for the top panel. The rest of the focusing cloth is constructed
same coated nylon fabric used for the ORIGINAL style.back
• How does the
fabric of the BLACKJACKET™ focusing cloth perform
in adverse conditions?
The fabric of the BLACKJACKET™ has been tested
in conditions ranging from minus 30 degrees to over 100 degrees. Both
the ORIGINAL's coated nylon and the HYBRID's waterproof/breathable perform
well, with only minor stiffening (not really even worth mentioning) of
the coated nylon fabric in the coldest conditions. Both styles shed water
and humidity, users prefer the breathable fabric of the HYBRID. It should
be noted that the very first BLACKJACKET™ ever
constructed (my very own!) is still in use after over ten years with
signs of wear. back to top
much does the BLACKJACKET™ focusing cloth cost?
Whether you choose the ORIGINAL or HYBRID style of the DSLR, 4x5/5x7 BLACKJACKET™,
they cost $80 (US), while the 8x10
BLACKJACKET™ costs $95 (US). Shipping and handling
for either is $7.95 via United States Postal Service
Priority Mail domestically. International rates have recently increased and we need to provide a quote for accurate pricing. We offer alternative shipping methods to meet your needs. We
cashiers checks and money orders, or you may pay with your credit
card via PAYPAL. To purchase your own BLACKJACKET™,
click the BUY link. back
• How do I order the BLACKJACKET™ focusing
cloth with PayPal?
To purchase the BLACKJACKET™ with Paypal, you have three methods.
1. You can set up an account for PayPal through the quietworks website
don't already have one).
A. Click on the "Buy One" button for the size and style you want.
B. Click on the "Use Your Credit Card with PayPal."
C. Choose your shipping method.
D. On the far right, click on the credit card button.
This takes you to a PayPal secure server where you can set up the account for
payment (unless you already have one).
2. You can use your credit card with PayPal
A. Follow steps 1-A through D and instead of setting up an account, click the
"SECURE CHECKOUT" button (below all the credit card symbols in the left half
to the PayPal secure server to enter your billing and shipping information.
3. You can bypass the www.quietworks.com website and just email
the proper funds (product price plus shipping fees in $US)
info (shipping name, address, phone number)
to firstname.lastname@example.org. I almost forgot! Idaho residents add 6% sales tax! back
• Where can I get a BLACKJACKET™ focusing
You are at the source. QuietWorks
Photography is the exclusive distributor
for the BLACKJACKET™. back to top
• Do you have questions
of your own?
Contact us if you have any questions
or concerns regarding the BLACKJACKET™ not addressed
in this website. back to top