I have been a little quiet online recently for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it is the last week of the school year, which is always a bit busy. Secondly, I have been volunteering for the WEUROs, which has taken up all my spare time. On top of that, I seem to have gained a few junk cameras that need fixing or adjusting before I can use them. That means the posts are taking longer to prepare.
Finally, a friend mentioned that she received a couple of cameras and one didn’t work. When I heard it was a Lomography camera, I offered to look at it. It was a fisheye 2 which I have tried before. Toy cameras are usually pretty simple machines, plus this one was not working, so what did she have to lose. I asked beforehand if I could take it apart and mentioned that there was a possibility that I would not be able to get it back together. Despite comments from her and other friends, I don’t really know what I am doing, but I am willing to destroy things with aplomb. She was ok with it.
There were a couple of issues with her camera. One, there was a battery stuck in the compartment. It had swelled and would not come out. Second, the film sprocket wheel was stuck and therefore the film was not able to move forward. As a result, it was not cocking the shutter.
I searched online for any kind of help and found this post and followed it in order to disassemble the camera.
Once I took out the swollen battery, I cleaned up all the debris it left behind. I noticed a broken piece which seemed to fit with the article I read. Not wanting to get a new piece to replace it, I decided to move it out of the way. It is still in there, but it no longer locks the sprocket wheel. Then I put everything back together. I was fully expecting it not to work and it didn’t. The sprocket wheel moved freely so would not cock the shutter, but…there was the multi-exposure button. Had I managed to get that back on and touching the right pieces? YES. So now, the camera would fire by manually cocking the shutter with this button. The sprocket wheel would now let the film run through freely but also didn’t stop the film after the correct number of sprockets. That was an easy thing to overcome though. Much like the VPKs I have tried, I just counted the turns on the film advance after marking it with tipex. With the use of a spare film, I counted 4 of my tipex marks until the frame was cleared.
With that information, I loaded it with a roll of HP5 and went for a walk. I tried a few double exposures by turning the camera upside down for the second shot, creating a mirror image.
Then I developed the film. Looking at the strip you can see 4 (approximately quarter turns) white marks are enough to clear the frames but does leave a generous gap. So you only get about 20 shots from a 24 exposure roll.
The camera needs plenty of light as the flash on this example no longer works due to the battery damage.
Here are the results.
Well, it worked. I didn’t bother with the viewfinder with these shots as I know from past experience you can practically touch an object and it will be ok. The ones with the flowers show this perfectly. I was almost touching them with the camera. Well, that wasted a day 🙂 I hope I earned a free lunch out of it.