Tag Archives: lens

Yashica T AF

This camera was a complete gamble. I know I usually buy cameras that are in junk bins and are a gamble, but usually they don’t cost much or I can test them a little in the shop to check them. But this for this one I could not test it at all and it was electronic so there could be things wrong that I could not fix. The price of the camera was $25, so it was more than I would usually spend on a broken electronic camera. I figured I could at least sell if for parts and get some of my money back if it didn’t work. At the end of the day it was a Yashica T and I probably would not be able to afford one in any other circumstance.

As you can see it was fairly clean with just a small crack on the lens cover. The flash did not stay retracted, but it still worked when I put in two AA batteries and slid the button. Also it seemed to want to load a film when you opened the back door. When I pressed the shutter the lens cover retracted and it seemed to take a photo. It activated 4 times then stopped completely. I opened the back once more, and again it tried to load a film, but then the shutter button would not do anything and the lens cover didn’t retract. So the shutter was stuck or sticky. Bugger. I did a search online and found this video.

That seemed to be exactly what my version did, maybe I could fix it too. I followed the video and did the same thing. Low and behold it worked. I pressed the shutter many times and fake loaded it many times, it carried on working. So now to test it with a film, but holy moly I was excited at the prospect. I liked how the lens cover retracted for each shot then returned to its original position. So there would be no forgetting the open it for shooting or closing it for protection. But that movement added to the electronics and might add to the issues. I also liked the slider which turned on the camera as it covered the shutter button when it was turned off. No bag shots with this camera. Plus the flash is off until you slide it on, so no random flashes

Here is the test roll, or half a roll as I had previously used it on another test camera.

I tried a few repeat shots, with and without the flash to see the difference and how the camera coped. For outdoor infinity shots, it seemed to cope very well and the exposure choices were great. For the closer shots, like the flowers, the focus is a bit off. So the minimum focal length can catch you out. I would suggest at least 2 meters to be sure.

Introduced in 1984 it was a top of the line point and shoot. The camera has a shutter speed range of 1/30 to 1/700 seconds, and has film choices of ISO 50 to 1000. Of course it has a Zeiss Tessar lens, but for me I have other cameras that performed better and I don’t think that has anything to do with the sticky shutter. For instance the Pentax PC35 AF which is turning into my favourite non-zoom point and shoot.

Keep or sell: It sold immediately.

Yashica Lynx 14

Another amazing junk camera find, a Lynx 14 with a whopping f1.4 lens. It was released in 1965, you can find all the technical details you might need at this great website.


When I first picked it up, the fungus on the lens was clearly visible, though not in the photo above. However, it was cheap so I thought I would try a few experiments. Curiosity might have killed the cat, but would it kill the camera?

Ok, firstly remove the lens. That turned out to be pretty easy, it came off so smoothly.

Then I tried soaking it in IPA and using a soft cloth, nothing changed. Hmmph. Then I remembered reading an article about toothpaste hacks, one of the hacks was about cleaning glass. Well, that’s stupid, dumb, it would ruin the lens…but I wondered what would really happen?? Maybe I could show what would happen with this lens??

So in for a penny in for $5 and I took out my toothpaste and rubbed the lens very carefully. Here are the results.

Holy moly, that looks clean and sparkly…like a fresh set of gnashers, smells quite nice too. But would it still work? Have I cause irreversible damage, removed the coating or changed the curvature? The internet gods were shocked and stunned and a few lectures ensued. Now, let’s be clear, there is no way I am endorsing this approach. I certainly would not attempt it on one of my favourite cameras or lenses. But I got this for $5 and ultimately it is mine to do with as I please. So in I shoved some Fuji 100 asa film and set off to Hitachi Taga on a dull and cloudy day.

The camera’s light meter did not work, so I had to use it in manual only. Also, the second image was incredibly light and at times hard to see at all. That made focusing very difficult at times. I seem to have slightly overexposed everything, I think my phone lightmeter was fooled by the dappled or cloudy light. Anyway, all shots were taken at one location with apertures between f1.4 and f2.8, with speeds of 1/60th or 1/125th.

It is still usable 🙂 I did not break it. Though as I did not test it before cleaning I do not really have a fair comparison. Either way…YAHHHHOOOOO!! I’ve got a shiny, slightly minty Lynx 14.

Keep or sell: Working ones are quite expensive according to this website, but I think I will keep it a while.

Canonet – The Original

I found a grotty old Canonet in a junk bin. The lens had some fungus on it and the hinge seal had rotted away, but the shutter fired and the light meter still worked.

I bought it for $5 and left it in my cupboard for about 6 months. I didn’t want to take the lens apart. Then one day I thought, oh just do it, what have you got to lose…well $5, but that isn’t much. So I got out my bag of tools and got to work.

I took the glass from the front part of the lens off and cleaned it. Much like in the video on this link. Actually, I forgot to take the before photos. That means the glass in the photos above is the cleaned version. This link has a different method with more toxic materials, which I didn’t have or have the nose for. It was much easier to remove the lens than I thought it would be.

Then I put it all back together and loaded a film to test my work. As I was not sure the camera would focus properly I put in a partly used film. I took it with me on this walk.

The second image in the viewfinder was a little light and difficult to focus, but there was enough left that I could at least make an attempt to focus. But golly gosh, it was sharp and the light meter was great on the exposure side too.


That means this original 1961 version of the Canonet now works perfectly. As the slider on this camera has the option for 400ASA film it is the MK3 version. You can get more tech information on this site.

Keep or Sell: I did fix this camera and cleaned the lens, my first attempt. That makes me want to keep it. The selenium cell works, that also makes me want to keep it. BUT, it is quite heavy and a little bit ugly, for me anyway. I probably won’t use it again very much. I will add it to my “ponder pile”.

Contax NX

This camera was in one of my local second-hand stores for ages. I saw it every time I went in to womble. It was on a shelf with a hefty price tag of about $100 which was quite a bit more than I would like to pay for an unknown camera, and one without a lens. But there it was week after week. Finally, I thought, “If is there the next time I go in I will buy it, I am sure I have a lens that will fit.”

It was in perfect condition and fired up straight away with 2 CR2 batteries. It came with the Japanese instructions and original price tag, which makes me think it is a mint, never used example. Out of interest, I looked up what that price would mean in today’s money and it came to $890 so a bargain for me really. You can find more technical details here. Of course, if you are knowledgeable or read the specs you will know that the lens mount for this camera is a Contax N, which I had none. In fact, there are only 10 lenses and they are all friggin expensive. Even an adapter to fix it to another camera is expensive. In fact, the lens would cost me three times that of the camera. I was tempted to just sell it straight away and not even bother. I don’t know why I changed my mind, but I did and waited for payday. I then search online for the cheapest I could find and bought that.

It was fairly cheap at $250 and in perfect condition. So all in all a pretty expensive camera for me, seeing as I sometimes pay $1. It better bloody work!

First I tried a fuji film and went for a walk around Koto-Ku in Japan. Here are a few of the photos.

Look at the mushrooms on the tree, it is so sharp. This camera is awesome. It is a little heavy to carry, but it is worth it. The dial on the top allows you to manually set the ISO, so you can push a film. There are two “o” settings where you can have custom settings and quickly change between the two. Plus all the regular settings. There is a thumb dial so you can change the speed or aperture without moving your eye from the viewfinder. Of course, it is the lens that makes this camera, it was well worth the money…as I got it cheap. But it did persuade me to get a better lens for the Leica I have and that worked out great too.

I then decided to put in a slide film, the first time since I went back to film, a Fuji Velvia 50.

The odd shot out is the Pikachu as I wanted to test the inbuilt flash. I found the film a little cold so I added a bit of warmth. I am not sure I will try it again. But the camera is still awesome. Contax is now my new favourite line.

With this autofocus camera and the Leica with the Canon lens, my feelings towards going wombling have changed. I don’t feel like I need another camera. My friends and family think this is a phase..but I am not sure. I have a few more cameras to try and add to this blog, but really I want to use these two cameras all the time. Plus I am reaching the limit of the free allowance for WordPress.

Keep or sell: moot.

Update Oct ‘18 – I sold the camera. I found I liked the older cameras more and the lens on this one didn’t fit any other camera I owned. So given I am out of work a while, it had to go. I don’t regret it, I think I have less GAS now.

Leica III with Canon Rangefinder 50mm f/1.4 Lens M39

I don’t usually post a camera twice unless I am testing a new film. BUT I decided to invest in a new lens for my Leica as I was unimpressed by the Summar. That lens seems to have a very light layer of haze. Though it is so even I am still only sure it is there due to the photos. I looked around and I could not afford a clearer Summar, not even close, so I plumped for this one. The Canon Rangefinder 50mm with a large f/1.4 aperture.

I loaded a film as soon as it arrived. Unfortunately, there is a typhoon on the way so it rained for days. Eventually, I thought sod it and took it out for a trial anyway.

The rain and the dark days meant I could only try it at apertures between f1.4 – f.2.8

I wasn’t expecting much as I had put in a 100asa film. I was pleasantly surprised.

The film and lens had managed to capture most things pretty sharply, with a good depth of field.

The exposure was also good, well-done smartphone light meter. The only issue I found was the cut-off point at the top. The camera seems to need me to aim above where I really intend to crop. This can be especially seen on the statue photos. I put the cherubs much closer to the centre.

I can’t wait to use the camera and lens on a brighter day.

Konica Lens 35 WB

I knew I had already tried a VERY similar camera to this. Basically, the only difference with this camera and the 28WB is that, the focal length. Everything else seems the same. Again, you can find lots of technical information on this site. There is also information on this site. AND I want to mention this site as it is awesome. His is a much better review than I could ever write.

Anyway, here is the camera.

I drove a little further north of Ibaraki to a place called Hananuki Valley,Takahagi. It was a very rainy day, very rainy! I suppose that made it perfect for this camera. Unfortunately, that made it difficult to actually have a clear lens. The person I went with used an umbrella, smart. But I had a rugged, sturdy, super camera. A camera made for those conditions. Damn it, I will not shelter….hence the rain drops on the lens.

So of course, the camera worked. look at those colours.

Keep or sell – I will sell as I have the yellow one I like. Unless I see a coloured one of these rather than black, I doubt I will keep it.

 Update: I found an orange one with original strap and film holders 🙂

Olympus OM Lens

This is a post, not for a camera, but a lens. I saw a weird looking olympus camera in a terrible condition. The lens attached to it didn’t seem so bad and at 500yen worth a try. I do love a good olympus.

It was attached to an Olympus 707 which was in such a state I threw it away without taking a photo. I really wish I had. I decided to take a few shots with the lens and then switch to my regular lens. I cleaned the lens as best I could and then put it on my OM4.

These are the shots from this lens using Oriental Seagull.

My camera-stealer friend gave me permission to post the photos of the children…because they are awesome!

So the lens works really well, and I love the film. If I see any more I will buy it…film and attached lenses. I used Fuji Prodol SPD to develop the film.