Sunday, May 10, 2015

Garage Sale Camera Finds

I love finding old cameras at garage sales. Nothing expensive, rare, or museum quality, just old and interesting cameras.

The feeling I get when I see a dusty camera box on a sale table is great. I can't wait to see what it is. They aren't just metal, glass, and plastic to me. They represent someones desire to record their life and the lives around them. These cameras saved memories. They may have been held in children's hands (like the Brownies were intended), or fiddled with by Grandpa on a Christmas morning.

I need more. Maybe one day I will get lucky and find a real gem, but until them my current garage sale oldies are just fine.

I have included a couple of the 8mm cameras I have found as well. Obviously not still image cameras, but I couldn't resist. They just look so great to me.

Here we go. You can click on any image to zoom in for a better look.

Kodak Starmite

Manufactured from 1960 to 1963. Notice the nifty built-in flash? It has the typical Dakon lens which is very likely plastic.
Uses 127 roll film and allowed the user to switch the camera between color or black and white.

Kodak Starflash

The Starflash was made in black in the US from March 1957-June 1965. I am unsure of the dats of manufacture in Canada.
It produced 4x4cm images on 127 film. It also sported the inexpensive Dakon lens. Like the Starmite, and Starlet,
it also let the user switch between color or black and white via a toggle of sorts at the front of the camera.

Kodak Brownie Starlet with the Supermite flash holder

Apparently these came about as early as 1956 and were produced until 1961. It has the typical plastic Dakon lens.
It used the popular 127 film. Again like its familiar cousins, provided a method on the camera front to switch between color or black and white.

Kodak Brownie Hawkeye with the detachable flash holder

I like this one a lot. I think it looks great for an oldie. These were around from September 1950 to sometime in 1961.
It produced a 2x2 image on 620 film. This once cost around $7 brand new.

Kodak Duaflex

(This is likely a model I)

There were three other models, the II, III, and IV. It has a Kodet Lens and used 620 roll film. These were introduced as early as 1947 in the US, and likely a couple years later in Canada.
Some Dualflex models used either a simple fixed focus 75mm f/15 Kodet lens, or with a 72mm f/8 Kodar triplet lens.

Kodak Brownie SIX-16

This camera was introduced in July 1946 and was discontinued in November 1951.
It produced a 2 ½ x 4 ¼ inche image on 616 film.

Lens: Meniscus
Shutter: Rotary
This went for the whopping price of about $4


Made by Great Wall Plastic Factory in Kowloon Hong Kong. What a great name for a company.
This cheap camera abused 120 film by leaking light and having a very low quality lens.
These were very, very cheap. On numerous occasions these were literally given away at some events.
Did I mention cheap? This thing feels like a toy, and not really like something that might produce pictures.

Ansco Panda

Just a simple plastic camera that was popular with kids. It came about in 1946. It shoots 620 film (or "Ansco No. 20" film). It weighs less than a doughnut.

Ansco Memar Pronto

This is a vintage, German made, 1954 Ansco Memar Pronto Camera
It shoots 35mm film, and is supposedly capable of decent images. I had horrible luck finding details on this camera.
My Internet search results were page after page of sales links. I love the look camera, and I like the nice weight.

Polaroid Automatic Land Camera 430

I love it.

It has auto exposure and nifty looking bellows. It was a popular camera even though it was of cheaper quality than its 250 and 450 cousins. It has a rigid viewfinder and a plastic lens. All that said, it's very cool. Why? It produced a 7.2×9.5cm print on Polaroid 100-series packfilm in about a minute. I am definitely dating myself here, but I can remember exactly when an adult took my first Polaroid picture and handed it to me. Watching it develop into a photo of my smiling face was magical. I t blew my preschool mind.

The amazing folks at Impossible even have new film available for those diehard Polaroid people out there.

Argus Cinemax 8EE 8mm Camera

Very cool. I know, it's not a still image camera, but it still interests me.
Like the rest of my oldies, this one is not very valuable, but I love it. It is 8mm, and it works by first winding it up.
It included a detachable handle (not shown). While hard to see in my  photo, on the front, under the lens are two buttons, T and W, for tele or wide adjustments.
Very solid. From what I can gather, these are from the early Sixties. A year or two older than me.

Sankyo Super CM-400

I know, not a still image camera, but still kind of cool. It's one of the 4 old 8mm cameras I own.

This camera was made in Japan by Sankyo Seiki and marketing began in 1969.
The lens is a Sankyo Zoom f: 1.8 \ F: 8.5-35 mm with a zooming ratio: 4.1x
focusing: manual, aerial, 1.3 to infinity
zooming: auto and manual.

That's it! I really need to hit some more garage sales. Maybe an old SLR is in my future

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