Lo-Fi #ShittyCameraChallenge, #InstantRegret: loading the Kodak EK2 instant camera with Instax Square film.

Lo-Fi #ShittyCameraChallenge, #InstantRegret: loading the Kodak EK2 instant camera with Instax Square film.

The biggest challenge with getting The Handle working again is finding some way to load the cassette with instant film. Clearly using Kodak PR10 is out of the question, and Instax Wide is a little too ... wide.

I came across a useful YouTube video where the user had created 'sleeves' for mounting Instax Mini film which were then loaded into the cassette and can then be exposed. 

On the video actual preparation of the sleeves was were quite complicated. But I don't have the patience for that, so I went for a simpler option of using card cut to size in which a piece of Instax Square film is loaded. 

First of all I created a paper template for a piece of card cut to the size of the original PR10 print size (100x96mm). I realised that the sleeve would need to be reinforced at the top so that the rollers would capture the 'film' evenly, so I added a 5mm space for a piece of card along the top. In the centre of the mount were slits to be cut in the card to mount the piece of Instax Square film. 

The card I chose was blue on one side and yellow on the other, which would help identify the front of the sleeve, and had a roughened surface which I hoped would help it pass through the rollers. 

After drawing the outline of the template for each mount on a piece of card (I could make six sleeves on on piece of A4 paper) I cut slits in the paper where the film was mounted and made sure that the film would fit properly. Note that the film is mounted with the 'black' side upwards. With Instax the film is exposed through the 'back' of the film.

After cutting the sleeves to size, the first test was to see that the Instax Square film fitted correctly. I also prepared one blank sleeve, without slits, which would be the 'dark slide' and would be the first 'film' in the cassette to be ejected from the camera after the cassette was loaded into the camera.

After testing that the film would load and be ejected properly it was time for a 'live' test. Using a changing bag, to keep the whole process in the dark, a fresh piece of Instax Square film was inserted into the cassette behind the dark slide. The cassette was then loaded into the camera and the first exposure made.

Originally, Kodak PR10 film was 160ASA whereas Instax film is about 800ASA. I therefore needed to adjust the exposure accordingly so used an ND4 filter, which I hoped would compensate for the roughly two stops difference between Kodak and Instax films.

The first exposure was ... disappointing. Clearly the film did not pass through the rollers properly, and the chemicals were spread unevenly. It was also possible that the camera did not expose the film correctly. Some more work is need.

#Kodak, #Handle, #Instant, #Camera, #classic, #Instax, #repair, #Wide, #OCC22, #OldCameraChallenge, #Retro, #Vintage, #InstantRegret, #believeinfilm,