I have what might be a rather unique example of an Agfa Super Isolette, and its unusual twist poses a bit of a challenge for shooting. I’m hoping that there might be a remedy.
The camera that I have (found at a local flea market) has a dead film counter mechanism. From everything that I’ve read, unless a working replacement can be found, once this mechanism fails your camera becomes a nice wall decoration. However, sometime in its history, this camera was modified so that that the counter mechanism got bypassed, allowing the shutter to operate perfectly. So as to then have some sort of counter, a red viewing hole was created in the camera back. But the placement of the viewing hole is what poses the challenge.
The viewing hole was not made in the center of the camera back where the traditional placement would be for a 6x6 camera. It was made instead in the upper right part of the back, above the film pressure plate. So if I use it, I am actually seeing the frame numbers for what I think is 6x9, and much film gets wasted. My alternative has been using the arrow on the film advance knob as a guide and counting rotations as I advance film. I’m getting closer to having 12 exposures on the roll, but 10 is the average.
I’m thinking that the placement of the viewing hole was done so as to avoid drilling through the film pressure plate, leaving jagged metal coming into contact with film passing by. So………..
Question #1: Would it be possible to remove the existing pressure plate and replace it with a conventional-with-hole 6x6 plate? A new viewing hole could be made in the back and the existing one permanently sealed off. Or………
Question#2: Is it possible to replace the existing camera back with another Agfa or Ansco 6x6 fold-out camera back that has the proper viewing hole? I’m thinking most answers to this question will be “no”, as the other Isollettes appear to use a different back and open/close mechanism altogether, but I’d love to be pleasantly surprised.
Thanks in advance for any input/guidance. This is my first post to the web page and forums.