"Sandbox" Cameras

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by zenrhino, May 7, 2009.

  1. zenrhino

    zenrhino Member

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    I got to listen to an artist talk by Todd Deustch at the Walker Art Center here in Minneapolis this week.

    One of his recurring themes was the problems (and opportunities) posed by having gone digital.

    Over and over he kept saying how much he missed Tri-X and his "sandbox cameras." These were, from his description, 70's-era compact rangefinders like the Canonet, GSN, 35RC, &c that gave him good performance but he wouldn't feel too badly about if he "dropped them into a toilet or the sandbox."

    It occurred to me that I have a couple of sandbox cameras and everyone else probably does, too.

    Mine are an Olympus Epic Stylus, a Canonet GIII and a Praktica MTL. These are the three cameras that pretty much ride shotgun with me everywhere in my bookbag (or as my wife calls it, the man purse). If they get banged around, or dropped in a toilet it won't be the end of the world for me.

    What are your sandbox cameras?
     
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  2. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Wirelessly posted (BlackBerry9000/4.6.0.167 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/102 UP.Link/6.3.0.0.0)

    Zeiss Ikon Contina III
     
  3. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    I have an Yashica GSN and a Konica Auto S.

    Jeff
     
  4. Mike Kennedy

    Mike Kennedy Member

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    I call mine "beaters".I maintain 5.Three Nikkormat's and 2 Pentax.
    When they eventually die I shall place them in a revered spot.
     
  5. denmark.yuzon

    denmark.yuzon Member

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    mine would be the Minolta Hi-matic 7s.. lol
     
  6. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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  7. elekm

    elekm Member

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    I don't understand why that photographer is whining. It's not like there aren't thousands of cameras out there on the used market that he could buy. I mean, what's stopping him from buying a camera and some film?

    Any plastic P&S falls into this category for me.
     
  8. zenrhino

    zenrhino Member

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    OT, but hopefully not offensively so

    It's a better/faster/cheaper thing. Same kinds of process tradeoffs that businesses make everyday.

    His gig is being a dad shooting in the chaos of a family with 4 young boys, getting in the shots where he can, processing/printing when he can. This way he doesn't have to worry about toxic darkroom chem, saves the time setting up chem and souping, etc., processing at his desk.

    The downside is the switch from a nice quiet sandbox rangefinder to a big, clunky very visible DSLR, image quality and the PITA factor of going to color from b/w.

    He's actually using digital for what it's best at -- not quality but convenience. And he was very quick to say that when he tried to work with the same kinds of cameras (small quiet p/s) in digital that his image quality suffered bigtime.
     
  9. McFortner

    McFortner Member

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    I have 2 Canonet 28s, 2 Yashica GSNs, and 2 Vivitar EF35. I've been happy with all of these and I didn't spend a lot of money on them. I even have a non-working GSN and a non-working GS that if I can't fix will be parts cameras. I'm not sure what's wrong with these two. And I'm trying to get some Kodak Pony 135s up and running next. Mostly oil in the shutters. I'm not very mechanically inclined so these may eventually go out to get repaired. So I have a few cameras that I don't mind kicking around and having fun with that also give good pictures.

    Michael
     
  10. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    What are your sandbox cameras?[/QUOTE]

    *********
    Leica M-8?:tongue::tongue::wink:
    Oh, you said non-digi.

    Rollei Prego, fixed-focal length 3.5 Rolleinar lens.
     
  11. Rol_Lei Nut

    Rol_Lei Nut Member

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    Pentax Spotmatic, or for extremely suicidal situations, I have a tested FED 5 waiting to go into action....
     
  12. raucousimages

    raucousimages Member

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    I have a Contax G2 that did 20 months in Afghanistan with the Special Forces. We thought the sand might chew up the the auto focus lenses but they did fine.
     
  13. Chaplain Jeff

    Chaplain Jeff Member

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    For this kind of shooting I usually take my Minolta Model 35 w/ 45mm, f/2.8 lens. I've also got a Minolta Super A and a couple of Minolta 7sII's.

    I wouldn't want to ruin any of them, but it would be much easier to replace them and their lenses then it would one of my Leicas.

    On the other hand, the Leicas are all insured for replacement value, so I'll as often as not take them out - that way I get the shot I want with the glass I know will get the shot.
     
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  15. FilmLives!

    FilmLives! Member

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    I actually have a "sandbox outfit" which consists of an Olympus OM-10 body, a Samyang 18-28 zoom lens (bought used), a Tamron 28-200 zoom, and a Tamrac photo backback. I carry this kit on my motorcycle so that none of my "good" cameras would be subjected to significant damage if I were to experience a "get off". The setup has in fact been thoroughly tested in an unintended "get off" - it survived relatively intact and I still use it today.

    jZ
     
  16. camerastoomany

    camerastoomany Member

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    About 300 of the darned things!!!

    I do usually carry a Yashica FX-7, missing a third of its leatherette and fitted with the 50mm f1.7. If I put it down somewhere, the only reason anyone would pick it up would be to toss it in the nearest bin. It's really SHABBY, although the performance isn't. The lens is great, the meter still accurate, and of course its mechanical.

    Rangefinder-wise, I have an Olympus 35 DC I like to carry about. It isn't shirt-pocketable but quite small. It is an auto version of the 35 RD with a back light compensation button. It has a rather good 6-element, 40mm f1.7 lens. Thinking about it, perhaps I shouldn't use it as a "sandbox" camera. I don't think they are all that easy to find and probably a lot pricier than when I bought mine.
     
  17. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

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    For pocketability, an Olympus 35 RC with a busted meter. When an SLR is needed, a Nikon EM.
     
  18. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    Mine is a Yashica U AF point-and-shoot I got at a garage sale for $1. It has a nice wide-angle lens and intelligent flash capability.
     
  19. Viggi

    Viggi Member

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    Unlike jZ (filmlives!) I don't have a designated 'sandbox' outfit (perhaps I need to do more exciting stuff...) but I think my Konica TC qualifies. It is not shabby by any stretch but I'm not too concerned it will pack up on me. And if it does, well, Konicas are well priced and so are its lenses. Last time I used it was on cranky day on the Scottish coast outside Gullane. Strong winds, rain, ocean spray, and lots of sand dunes. Also carry an Olympus 35RC with me, but I actually paid much more for that one...
     
  20. DBP

    DBP Member

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    There is a Nikon N50 I keep in the car, a Nikonos IV I would comfortably take anywhere, and any of several Argus bricks I let young children handle.
     
  21. mudman

    mudman Member

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    Canonet GIII I picked up for $2 at a garage sale. It's a bit ratty, but works like a charm. I've taken it hiking, kayaking and Skiiing with no problems.
     
  22. Markok765

    Markok765 Member

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    My Nikon F5. It's the fastest, most reliable camera ever which I will not hesitate to take into the worst situations. It's sealed, metal, and fast. I love it.

    EDIT: Oh wait, this is the RF forum :tongue: I guess my XA then, though I generally won't use it in rain.
     
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  23. desertrat

    desertrat Subscriber

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    My sandbox cameras:

    Argus C-4
    Fed-2
     
  24. thisismyname09

    thisismyname09 Member

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    I have a yashica GSN, but I take semi-obsessive care of my cameras. I'd rather not drop it in a sandbox.
     
  25. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    Nikon L35AF or Nikonos III
     
  26. FilmLives!

    FilmLives! Member

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    I'll add that my original "sandbox camera" carried on the motorcycle was a Rollei 35S (for the obvious reasons of being very small yet a great picture taker) ... until I found out it was worth twice what I paid for it! I still use it, but its treated a tad more reverently now. And I can't get myself to make my Konica S2 a "sandbox camera", I just love shooting with it too much.

    jZ