Ok, we recognize that this is a bit of an odd upgrade, since many would probably think that a digital upgrade would be more appropriate. However, we found this interesting anyway. [Marker1024] has taken this old Polaroid land camera and modified it to accept a standard 35mm roll. His list of materials may sound fairly MacGyver-ish with foil and sculpey, but his results look to be well done and fairly sturdy. We have to say that the aesthetics of the camera itself are quite appealing and we could see carrying one of these around. As interesting as the writeup is though, we can’t help but wonder what the pictures look like that came out of it!
It took us a while to stop drooling long enough to write about this amazing machining project. [Denis MO] made a single-lens reflex camera from scratch. The banner image above is not the finished product, but just one step in the production chain. [Denis] has been thinking about doing this project for 25 years and finally took the plunge. From the start, the only parts he planned on NOT making himself were the screws, ball bearings, shutter, curtain fabric, and interchangeable lenses. Everything else is his own creation based off of his own design. Spend some time looking over his project. There’s plenty of information and images of both the machining process, and the drawings he mocked up in the design process. We’ve also included a pic of the finished camera and the contact sheet from his test roll of film after the break.
Continue reading “Machining an SLR camera from scratch”
We saw this picture on Flickr this morning and started getting really curious. The caption says that [Steffanhh1] modified the Yashica Electro Shutter camera to be fully manual. We’re not camera experts so we had to do a little research to see what was going on here. The Yashika Electro got its name due to how the shutter speed is controlled. You have two little LEDs that light up depending on which direction you need to turn the dial (based on ambient light?). [Steffanhh1] really wanted full control, so they hacked in a dial with a knot of resistors under it. The first test photographs are downloading developing, so we’ll have to wait to see the results.
The impossible has happened. While that may sound a bit over dramatic, the project itself was titled “the impossible project”. What is it that is so impossible? The revival of Polaroid instant film. This is not a newer, digital alternative, this is film you can actually buy and plop into your old Polaroid camera. What’s the big deal? All they had to do was start producing it again right? Not really. They’ve completely re-engineered it from scratch. That’s pretty impressive. We had heard, early last year, that they were going to attempt it, and we’re pleased to see that they’ve succeeded.
That being said, a handheld, home hacked digital instant picture device sounds kind of cool. It would probably be an easy one to build too.
For those of you who have been dreading the day that you have to dig out those old family films in Super 8 format and take them to get digitized, dread no more. Now you could turn it into a cool project. [Photobsen] has posted pictures of an automated system for scanning and compiling the film into a digital movie. There was already software available, called CineToVid, which would take the scanned segments and create a video from them, but doing the actual scanning was quite laborious. [Photobsen] built a quick automated system using an old floppy drive connected to his computer via parallel port. He now scans about 80 seconds of film per hour, unattended.
This one is from way back in 2002, but we didn’t see it till today. This is a hand built panoramic camera. The film is laid out across the back of the case, and when taking a picture, the lens assembly rotates to expose the film. It is a very nice looking design. The brass body is quite reminiscent of the recent one posted here. On the site, you’ll find not only the build log, but a full explanation of all the math behind the design. It is a very interesting read, even if you have no plans on building your own.
Some things are made to look steam punk but others are steam punk. This example of the later is a camera made mostly of brass. The body has been soldered together with only a shutter and lens being purchased for the project. There is a viewfinder and separate range finder to determine the proper focus for pictures as this is not a single lens reflex.
It should be obvious by now that this is a film camera. It relies on the photographer to turn the winder until an arrow on the knob lines up with a mark on the body for proper alignment. If you set out to make one of these, perhaps you should also manufacture your own film for it.