Category Archives: Photography

52 Cameras: # 146 — Utility Mfg. Co. Carlton (Falcon Miniature)




I metered for box speed (ISO 80) even though the film is 44 years old so most of the shots are underexposed. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting anything because of the cross-processing so this is a pleasant surprise.
Goober pining for the fjords

Goober pining for the fjords


Quite a bit of flare.

Quite a bit of flare.


Half of the image in the video.  Jem approaches Goober.

Half of the image in the video. Jem approaches Goober.


Dramatic tree.

Dramatic tree.


Is this thing on?  Spooky how much I'm looking like my dad.

Is this thing on? Spooky how much I’m looking like my dad.




A minor tear-down to clean it and measure the aperture.
The place to start -- there are only two screws.

The place to start — there are only two screws.


The whole lens/shutter assembly lifts off to reveal…
... This felt pad which makes it light tight.

… This felt pad which makes it light tight.


I wanted to get to the back of the lens to clean it but I couldn’t figure out how to remove the shutter. It turns out it’s just sitting there. The whole stack, the face-plate, lens, shutter, and felt, are held in place with the screws.
The outer shutter opens & the inner one closes so the aperture is already covered when you let go of the lever.

The outer shutter opens & the inner one closes so the aperture is already covered when you let go of the lever.


The time lever (right in the photo above) has a tab that holds the inner shutter open.
The back of the lens board.

The back of the lens board.


The body is just a light-tight box with a knob to turn the spool.

The body is just a light-tight box with a knob to turn the spool.


Simple is good. Simple survives. Other than cleaning the lens and a little gunk in the shutter, I didn’t have to do anything. This camera works as well as it did 77 years ago.

Process Kodacolor-X as Black & White

I recently shot with an old Carlton 127 camera. The only film I had was a roll of new-old stock Kodacolor-X.

ASA/ISO 80 -- Develop by Feb. 1974.

ASA/ISO 80 — Develop by Feb. 1974.


Kodacolor-X is process C-22 film, extinct except for a couple of specialty labs who mix their own chemicals from scratch. Since I shot the film (not a precious roll of family photos found in a relative’s attic), it’s not worth the price or the wait to send it off. I’ve read here and there about cross-processing old color print film in B&W chemicals and even had some success (-ish) with Kodachrome. Worth a shot so here’s what I did:

I used Kodak HC-110 developer at dilution H. H is an unofficial mix using 1 part developer concentrate to 63 parts water. That’s the US strength developer where dilution B is 1+31.

I used a Yankee plastic tank and lower reel that can adjust for 127 film. For 127, the tank takes 420mL of solution.

Everything was done at 20C/68F. I developed for 10 minutes agitating the first 15 seconds (about 10 inversions) and then 4 inversions every minute for the remainder of the time.

One minute stop bath, using Kodak Indicator Stop at 16mL/liter, inverting the first 15 seconds (10 inversions) and then letting it sit for the remainder of the time.

Ilford Rapid fixer mixed to normal film strength (1+4) for 5 minutes using the same agitation as the developer.

I rinsed using the Ilford method: fill tank & invert 5X; Re-fill & invert 10X; Re-fill & invert 20X. I gave it an extra 20X rinse with some Photo-Flo for good measure and hung it to dry.

The base is really dark orange but Kodacolor-X doesn’t have the nasty, black anti-halation layer that Kodachrome has, and it scanned OK. Boosting the gain on the scanner brings out the noise and grain, but not too bad for what I was working with. I used VueScan software. The Canon software won’t do negatives without the film holder but I don’t have a 127 holder.

I’ll try scanning again after trying a bleaching step, soaking the film in fixer with ascorbic acid (vitamin C) added.

Kodacolor negative.

Kodacolor negative.


Inversion of the snapshot.

Inversion of the snapshot.

52 Cameras: # 144 — Argus A


I need to start wearing my glasses when I do these videos. I can’t see what I’m doing up close.


A couple of things I thought of after I finished the video:
There’s no rewind release. The same knob you pull to load the cassette is the rewind knob. It’s a good idea to check it to make sure the film tension is OK after you pull it out of your bag.

The shutter is completely uncoupled from the film transport so multiple exposures are easy/easy mistakes to make.

The working bits of the camera were clean even though the body is dusty. I had it in the bag with no lens cap and the lens got crud on it. There is some grain and scanner noise in the darker shots.

This is what happens when I forget to pull out the lens.

This is what happens when I forget to pull out the lens.


Double exposure.  1/25 second wasn't slow enough so I winged it using 'B'.

Double exposure. 1/25 second wasn’t slow enough so I winged it using ‘B’.


Nice color but the uncoated lens flares if I'm not careful.

Nice color but the uncoated lens flares if I’m not careful.


Not an exciting subject but good exposure.

Not an exciting subject but good exposure.


Trees hold still while I mess around with an old camera.

Trees hold still while I mess around with an old camera.

Phound Photos Volume 7

There is only one image so far but I’m really excited for a couple of reasons.

I bought a box of old movie films (Super-8 & 16mm) and it also came with boxes of color slides. These aren’t buy-them-at-the-gift-shop slides but photos someone took on various vacations. Inside the big boxes are small plastic Kodak slide boxes with labels written on them. They are somewhat jumbled but the small boxes are labeled with where the photos were taken and the recipient.

It’s a little sad thinking about why the boxes are labeled this way. Was the photographer downsizing in his old age or moving to assisted living (we used to call them “retirement homes”)? Did he die and this is how the slides were to be divided? The movies have extra labels indicating they were digitized. I hope the slides were too before they ended up at a Goodwill.

This is a fairly large collection and from what I can tell, he was a talented photographer. I’m not talking about a Vivian Maier kind of find, but a fascinating puzzle.

The box this slide came from is labeled “Hawaii For Holly”.

"Hawaii For Holly"

“Hawaii For Holly”

It’s a lousy scan but here’s the second reason I’m stoked — I used an old slide duplicator, an “Accura Zoom Duplivar”. I got it when I bought a different lot of equipment. The duplicator had a Minolta SR mount on it so I hadn’t really thought about using it. I was making myself crazy trying to find an M42 to EOS adapter — I have a couple and couldn’t find either — so I used some of my down time while sick this last week to organize the boxes and boxes of stuff in my office. It still looks like a mess but it’s a mess where I can better find things. Any way, putting lens adapters, macro tubes and such into their own bin, I came across the slide duplicator. Checking to see if I could cannibalize parts I realized the Minolta mount is also an adapter. The slide duplicator actually has a T-mount.

I also have, and miraculously found, a T-mount adapter for the Canon. It works but the crop factor (1.6) from the smaller APS-C sensor on the Canon 60D narrows the field of view too much. I’d have to take multiple shots of each slide and stitch them together. I might as well use the flatbed and the whole point is to get away from the cruel tedium of doing slides and negatives on the scanner. The 9000f is a good scanner but the workflow is error-prone and soooooo time consuming omigodjustkillmenow.

Plan C: I have a full frame digital which hasn’t been featured yet on 52 cameras. I also bought a Canon EOS to Sony E-mount adapter.

Voila!  Frankenkludge.

Voila! Frankenkludge.

It’s made up from these bits plus the Sony: EOS to E-mount adapter, T-Mount to EOS adapter, T-mount slide duplicator.

The bits...

The bits…

I inserted the slide, held the whole rig up to an LED bulb in the kitchen and pressed the shutter. The focus and light both need a little work but not bad for a quick pass/fail test. The slide duplicator doesn’t really have focusing but it does have settings from 1.0 (life sized) to 2.0 which I haven’t played with yet. Stacking adapters may be introducing some error as well.

I’ll tinker some more and report back here.

52 Cameras: # 142 — Fujica AZ-1




Photoworks color print film, ISO 400, expired 01/06. Developed in marginal Unicolor C-41 chemicals. Scanned on a CanoScan 9000f at 3200DPI. A few tweaks obvious in the file names.

They only come on at night.

M's niece & nephew got these cool ballons with LEDs & light sensors.

M’s niece & nephew got these cool ballons with LEDs & light sensors.


Sunset through the autumn leaves.

Sunset through the autumn leaves.


Sunflowers at La Montanita Co-op.  Not much editing -- it just looks like a painting.

Sunflowers at La Montanita Co-op. Not much editing — it just looks like a painting.

52 Cameras: # 141 — Pentax Spotmatic SP




Kodak Tmax 100 developed in HC-110 dilution ‘H’ (1+63) at 68F for 12 min.
Scanned on a Canon CanoScan 9000f at 2400DPI.

Another frame showing the unexposed portion.

Another frame showing the unexposed portion.


The camera is getting better with use but I want to figure out what’s going on. The side of the frame that’s black and the direction of curtain travel should point the way.

Pretty severe crop.  The cool plant that was the real subject was in the black part.

Pretty severe crop. The cool plant that was the real subject was in the black part.


Another crop -- the tree was at the right thirds vertical.  Love the rocks though.

Another crop — the tree was at the right thirds vertical. Love the rocks though.


This one, like the shot in the video, came out well and didn't have the problem.

This one, like the shot in the video, came out well and didn’t have the problem.


I like the perspective distortion in this one -- it gives a sense of height.

I like the perspective distortion in this one — it gives a sense of height.

Phound Photos Volume 6

I found this roll in a Pentax Zoom 90-WR Date. I purchased the camera on 14 December 2016 as part of a 15 camera lot from Goodwill of Orange County. The images seem to be from California City, CA.

Considering that it’s been in the camera for nearly 20 years and my color chemicals are almost exhausted, it’s a miracle I got anything.

"American Mercantile" film by 3M so it's probably Ferrania.

“American Mercantile” film by 3M so it’s probably Ferrania.


18-ish frames total. 3 of the 18 are partially ruined from light exposure.
He loves this truck.  Half of the images I got feature the truck.

He loves this truck. Half of the images I got feature the truck.


I'm guessing this is the proud owner.

I’m guessing this is the proud owner.


I usually hate date stamps on photos but in this case it was really useful.
Oneida for Christmas!

Oneida for Christmas!


Mom and dad?

Mom and dad?


Truck guy's younger siblings?

Truck guy’s younger siblings?


Happy 77th!  He must be OK, he's Pisces.

Happy 77th! He must be OK, he’s Pisces.


It’s always tempting to make up some sordid backstory about strangers (like I do to amuse myself in restaurants) but they seem nice so I’ll just leave this here.

52 Cameras: # 140 — Using the Ansco Readyflash & Spooling 620 Film

Using the Ansco Readyflash Part1: Spooling 620 Film

There are a lot of sites with instructions for paring down 120 spools instead of re-spooling. Give it a whirl if you don’t mind risking a roll. A couple of examples:

http://www.instructables.com/id/Using-120-Film-in-620-Era-cameras/
https://www.lomography.com/magazine/178618-how-to-modify-120-film-for-a-620-film-camera

One warning if you decide to go this route: The 620 film slot and the corresponding piece in the camera that turns it are smaller. Make sure the adapted roll is smooth on the ends and rotates freely. Otherwise, the bit inside the camera may rotate inside the slot of the film spool and break it. Filing the end of the spool makes it even weaker. See my experience using a 120 spool in a Rover (Diana) camera.



Using the Ansco Readyflash Part2: Loading & Shooting

Film Photography Project 620 film goodies: https://filmphotographystore.com/collections/all/620-film