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  1. #1

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    Anyone know this vintage camera

    Hey....my dad found this at his mothers place.... it looks pretty old.

    Anyone know what year it was produced?

    Its a box brownie apprently. Takes 120 film. Anyone know how to work it.

    Its a number 2 Brownie, model F.

    Is it worth anything?






  2. #2

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    McKeowns says $1-$10. Made from 1901 to 1933. Since yours has the grainy covering it was not one of the early models. Shots 2x3; If it would have had the colored cover it would be worth about $40. From the pics, it looks like a nice example.

  3. #3
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    I doubt it's worth anything, sorry (http://www.brownie-camera.com/53.shtml) The manual for it is here: http://www.brownie-camera.com/manual...ab/index.shtml
    Box cameras are fun & easy to use. Just put the film inside and snap away

  4. #4

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    As you mentioned, this is the No. 1 Brownie Model F. It should have an aluminum body covered with imitation lever. This model was made between 1924 and 1933 and cost $2.75. Cameras with removable backs were made from 1924 to 1925, and those with hinged backs were made from 1927 to 1933. Not sure what happened between 1925 and 1926 -- my book doesn't explain that.

    Earlier No. 2 Brownies were made of cardboard, and later cameras were offered in blue, brown, gray, green or red.

    There's not a lot to using this camera. Load the film, wind to No. 1 in the red window. The shutter release is the small lever on the side.

    There is no focusing. To frame your photo, use the little viewfinder on the top for portraits and on the side for landscapes.

    Take your photo and wind to the next frame.

    This was part of Kodak's effort: "You press the shutter release. We do the rest."

  5. #5

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    They are great cameras. I love mine, and would like to get another some day.

    They are worth whatever you make of them as a user. They are not worth any real money, though. 10 clams is the MAXIMUM I would pay for a really nice one. (I might pay shipping on top of it if it was REEEEEEEALY nice.)

    They are pretty simple to operate, especially if you are already familiar with medium format cameras.

    The viewfinders are on top for vertical pix and on the side with the film advance for horizontal pix.

    The shutter release is near the advance lever. It trips the shutter by being moved either up or down, so be careful not to make multiple exposures by returning it to the position you started at before the last picture you took.

    The pull-up switch on top opposite the viewfinder is the bulb switch. When it is pulled up, the shutter stays open when you trip it, and closes when you trip it again.

    The pull-up selector on top in the middle lets you pick one of three apertures: f/11, f/16, or f/22.

    The shutter speed was '50 when the camera was new.

    I think I figured out one time that the lens has approximately the same angle of view as a 35mm lens on 24x36mm format, AKA your standard frame size for 35mm film.

    To load the camera:

    1. Ensure that if there is film inside, it is fully rolled onto the take up reel before opening the camera. Turn the advance knob counterclockwise to advance the film. If possible, remove the first roll of film in a changing bag or a dark room, or just run a sacrifice test roll through the camera. If anything is wrong with the camera on the take up side, you could get a loosely-wound "fat roll", which would expose your pictures if the roll was pulled out in the light. The "fat roll" would need to go straight into an empty Nikkor tank in the changing bag to protect it (either rolled onto a reel or just placed into the tank).
    2. Pull the advance knob away from the body to disengage it from the film spool inside.
    3. Lift up the latch on the top rear of the camera to unlock the door. It should then swing open on the bottom hinge.
    4. Pull the film insert all the way out of the camera.
    5. Remove the exposed film, if it is in there, by flipping the silver pegs outward.
    6. Remove the empty feed spool in the same manner, and put it where the exposed roll was. Flip the silver pegs in again to hold it in place.
    7. Insert a new roll of film where the feed spool was. Remove the paper retaining band from the roll. The film should be placed so that it will feed over the roll, not underneath it. If you don't get this right, you end up exposing the backing paper instead of the emulsion. Flip down the silver pegs to hold the roll in place.
    8. Pull out enough paper leader to wrap around the top roller, go across the film gate, wrap around the bottom roller, and make it to the take up spool that you just inserted.
    9. Place the tab from the leader into the slot in the take up reel, and fold over the protruding tab.
    10. Wind the film on to the take up reel just enough so that it is reliably feeding without the tab slipping backward.
    11. Take up the slack on the leader paper. Hold the feed spool in place with your left hand while turning the take-up spool counter clockwise with your right.
    12. While holding the tension on the leader paper as firmly as you can, put the film insert back into the camera body. Before doing so, orient it so that the only flip-down silver peg with a slot in it ends up underneath the advance knob. The slot accepts the tab on the advance knob.
    13. Go into subdued light and get a piece of black tape ready.
    14. Push the advance knob back into the body while slowly turning it counter clockwise, until the tab on the advance knob engages the slot on the silver peg on the film insert.
    15. Close the back door.
    16. Place a piece of black tape on the back door so that it can "hinge" down and cover the orange window on the film door, but do not cover the window yet.
    17. Advance the film by turning the advance knob counter clockwise until the faint number "1" appears in the orange window.
    18. "Hinge" the tape down to cover the orange window.

    That is an overly long-winded and complicated-sounding explanation of loading the thing, because I wanted to cover any questions you might have. It is really much more simple than it sounds.

    After you take each picture, turn the advance knob while briefly lifting up the tape in subdued light until you see the next frame number, then immediately put the tape back down. Your shadow is about all you can count on in most instances.

    With pan films, you WILL have light leaks from the orange window if you do not take these precautions. They will be on the bottom left of the picture for verticals, on the bottom right for horizontals, and will also appear across the frame at any place you stopped turning the advance knob to change your grip on it while advancing. Even when taking the precautions, you may still have some leaks, but they will be greatly minimized.

    To avoid the hassle of the tape and subdued light, you can just use an ortho film, as these cameras were originally intended to take...though I still might tape a darker filter over the window. For instance, red instead of orange.

    As you can tell from the apertures and shutter speeds I listed, these cameras can get good exposures on a bright and clear day with anything from a 25 to a 100 speed film.

    The lens can be easily cleaned with a Q-tip.

    The camera focuses best on objects that are at least 10 feet away.

    The pix will be sharper than you expect...but not SHARP sharp. The smaller the aperture, the sharper they will be. Even at the smallest aperture, the edges go soft. Don't worry about it. Just use it to good effect.

    Congratulations on your new tool. They are great image makers, and fun to boot.

    If you don't want it, I do.

    Here is where I picked up most of what I know about them: http://www.brownie-camera.com/.
    Last edited by 2F/2F; 08-06-2009 at 06:51 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  6. #6

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    Pulling up the small metal tab on the top of the camera should give you a "B" shutter speed. With the tab pushed down, it's probably roughly 1/25. Aperture isn't indicated, but it's probably between f/6.3 (common for that time) and f/11 or maybe even f/16.

    I've used 100 and 400 speed film in my box cameras with nice results.

  7. #7
    DLM
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    I just picked up one of the Agfa Ansco Shur-Shot Special box cameras yesterday, very similar to this. I cleaned it up right away, and loaded it with film. can't wait to go out and shoot some test shots with it. I'll probably get a few people stopping by to check it out, as usual when I take out old cameras.

  8. #8
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    When I looked it up I found that 120 roll film was invented by Eastman Kodak in 1901 for the Brownie No.2.
    Everytime I find a film or paper that I like, they discontinue it. - Paul Strand - Aperture monograph on Strand

  9. #9

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    How much is it worth ????

    That will greatly depend on you after you have shot some rolls of film with it.
    The results are better than from a Holga, a lot better, and you should have no light-leaks.
    And there is no better introduction to MF and TLR's.

    I first used one when I was 7 and loved it.
    Now a day's, 50 years later, I still have one, waiting to be picked-up for some more shots.

    Peter



 

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