Polaroid 80A

Discussion in 'Collector's Corner' started by terri, Jan 26, 2004.

  1. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Just for fun (and five bucks) I picked up this camera the other day off of ebay. For 5 bucks plus S&H it comes with original box and instruction booklet, supposedly clean and in great shape, and I thought it would be one of those fun, if worthless, things to have on display. I haven't gotten it yet.

    When I went in to pick up my Pentax ME, where it was getting cleaned up and repaired, I saw an identical 80A behind a display case and told the guy who restored my ME I had one coming for five bucks. He said there is a place that will change out the back of this camera so it can shoot sheet film - (669, I'm guessing, though he did not specify film type).

    Does this sound like something that's doable? It would be cool if I could make the camera actually work, especially if it didn't cost an arm and a leg. Thoughts, anyone?
     
  2. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Well, apparently no one had thoughts about it. :p

    But I received the camera and it's a little beauty. I did some checking on the internet and found I could run 120 film through it, as long as I didn't mind advancing the film in total darkness by actually lifting the spools and twisting. I don't mind doing weird things like this; though I feel clumsy, somehow I think it helps make me a better photographer, getting so manual, coaxing the old girl into action.

    Anyway - success! :cheer: No light leaks. And these are freakin' big negatives, to boot - approx. 3.25x 2.25. The camera's lens is, in fact, slightly off, maybe by about 1 degree, which does not impact composition but serves to give a softness to the upper right and side of the negative - but it's briar-sharp everywhere else. I might find someone to adjust the bellows arm to bring it back into perfect alignment, but right now I can't help feel tickled that the thing even works! :D
     
  3. P Bailey

    P Bailey TPF Noob!

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    Interesting project you are working on. I have found a web site that may be some additional help. Check this out when you get a chance.
    http://www.rwhirled.com/landlist/how2-hland120.htm
    I have done quite a few different conversions, but never worked with a Polaroid. I would like to see your 'Polaroid' photos if possible. Good Luck !
     
  4. P Bailey

    P Bailey TPF Noob!

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  5. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    P: I love the Land list. One of the places I visited, actually! :wink: Tons of great info to be had there.

    And that Agfa camera is COOL looking! And what great shots - I especially like that one of the church, though all them are good.

    I'm interested in large negatives since they lend themselves well for alternative processes like cyanotypes, which is on my "things to try" list. That camera of yours would do the trick. :D
     
  6. P Bailey

    P Bailey TPF Noob!

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    The Agfa D6 originally used 616 film. I made adapters for the 120 spools by cutting the ends off 616 spools. It worked very well. The hardest part was calculating the framing. The framing window is inline with the film numbers, but I had to start on #3 and advance 3 frames per shot. I sold this camera a few weeks ago.
     
  7. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    :cry:

    Well, I'll look forward to seeing more of your cool shots from your other cameras, then. That sounded like a fun experiment. I love this kind of stuff!!
     
  8. P Bailey

    P Bailey TPF Noob!

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    The only on going project is an Argus 75 pinhole camera. It is in the testing stage, but it is too cold to take it outside. Pinhole photography is time consuming amd not good for the winter time. I spend most of the winter doing repair and restoration work. Have you visited my web site ? There are over 1000 photos posted there at last update.
     
  9. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Actually I have taken a peek. Lots of good stuff! I have definitely liked your work with the pinhole camera, but I'd agree it has limits due to the exposure time involved. But when you get images as good as yours have been, it's still worth it. :D I'd like to pick up a modified Diana or something similar one day, to give it a try. I'm not as handy as you are!
     
  10. P Bailey

    P Bailey TPF Noob!

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    If you can find a camera that you would like to modify, I would be happy to install a pinhole for you. It is not too difficult. I would hive to wait for some warm weather to do the testing. I generally shoot a few rolls of film through them to be sure all is OK.
     
  11. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Well, considering I know you do good work from the stuff you've posted, that's a very generous offer. Thanks! I'd be willing to scratch around ebay or something if I had an idea what to look for. Is there any particular camera best suited for that kind of modification? Box camera, etc? I'm clueless.
     
  12. P Bailey

    P Bailey TPF Noob!

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    I assume you want to shoot 120 film. An old box camera would be a good choice. Most of them are 6x9 format. These cameras are very inexpensive, which is a plus. A tripod socket is a consideration. You will want to use a tripod on occasion to experiment with angles and that type of thing. One can be added to most cameras.
    The old TLR cameras are also good candidates for pinhole conversion. These are likely to be a little more expensive. Keep in mind, many of them use 620 film. Unless you can respool your own film, you should stay away from these. The waist level viewfinders are very nice to use. You can set the camera on the ground and still compose your shot quite easily.
    35mm is also an option. Most any old viewfinder camera will work well. As long as the camera is complete, the conversion is quite simple.
    Whatever you choose for a camera the whole project is quite inexpensive. If you want me to do the work just let me know.
     

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