What on earth is a 7x17 Ultra Large Format View Camera?

Wikipedia says this of View cameras: "A large-format camera in which the lens forms an inverted image on a ground glass screen directly at the plane of the film. The image viewed is exactly the same as the image on the film, which replaces the viewing screen during exposure."

A functional description but not terribly visual. It's basically a set of bellows (to enable focusing) with a lens at one end, a piece of ground glass at the other where you can see an inverted image so you can compose and focus. To take an image you need to insert a film holder with film in front of the ground glass and fire the lens shutter. (plus other steps not included).

So like the old school cameras you used to see in Westerns but without the need for the Magnesium flash because film is faster these days. 😁