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  1. #11

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    The Holga is 645 format from the factory, but it has the switchable red window for 6x6. All you have to do is to make a 6x6 mask. The lens, however, does not provide enough coverage for 6x6 without causing vignetting in the corners. Using the camera as 6x6 by removing the 645 mask entirely and not replacing it is why many people have light leaks. The mask is part of the whole system which keeps the film flat and tight, and which keeps out light. Also, just making a 6x6 mask by cutting out the extra material in the original 645 mask and using just the rim is not enough. You have to fabricate the inside part of the mask with paper or something to block out light from inside parts of the camera. Another thing that causes apparent light leaks is from (1) people not being used to loading and unloading 120 film and inadvertently letting light get into it, or (2) loose winding of the film, which causes light to leak onto parts of the film when unloading. This can be remedied too, if it happens.

    I've given a lot of thought to how I would graft a different lens on that camera, like from a 6x6 folder. I've thought of taking the lens from an old cheap Polaroid pack camera. But, really, what would be the point? The camera IS the lens. If you already have a 6x6 folder, why not just leave the lens on it and use it instead of a Holga, or if you have an old, cheap Polaroid pack camera, why not just use IT as a toy camera, since pack film is readily available. Of course, the perspective would be different, because the Holga has about a 60mm lens, and 6x6 folders generally have a 75 or 80mm lens. One idea that might have some merit is somehow using the same lens (to keep that Holga look), but grafting on a shutter that allows a range of shutter speeds. Then again, my feeling is why not just use a camera that already has shutter speed settings. Part of the appeal of the Holga is making it work within the severe limitations it imposes.

    On the other hand, with a spare Holga, it might be fun to make modifications like that, even though, it really wouldn't be a Holga anymore... but it could simply be satisfying to make such a customization work. I think it wouldn't be too hard to graft a folder shutter/lens combination on there (probably using the existing lens barrel and some epoxy glue, and then to deternine focus points using a ground glass.

    Personally, I think an old box camera would be a much better platform for such modifications, but then, you wouldn't be able to say it's a Holga photo

  2. #12

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    For a few more dollars you can buy a WOCA which is a Holga with a glass lens. I have a couple of Holgas and find they are great fun. There are two holes to cover with tape, make a little cover for the film counter out of tape that you can hinge up between exposures and you are ready to go. The sites mentioned contain additional mods. Painting the inside flat black is probably a good idea. I have no light leaks with mine and perfer to have the only "flaws" to be a result of the lens. I use one normal and the other one I modified to keep the shutter open for long night exposures. The most ideal film in my mind is the Arista 400, basically HP5.
    "Fundamentally I think we need to rediscover a non-ironic world"
    Robert Adams

  3. #13
    Leon's Avatar
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    pierre said

    Also, just making a 6x6 mask by cutting out the extra material in the original 645 mask and using just the rim is not enough.
    ... well, thats exactly what i have on my 1st holga and I have no probs at all. The film stays flat, no extra light leaks and i get great negatives. In fact, sometimes i prefer i to my other holga with the factory made 6x6 insert.

    The best thing about holgas is to just try and see - new ones are available at very low prices on Ebay so it's not really that much of a problem if it doesnt work out. If anyone is thinking about getting one, dont wory about anything said here, just get one and try it out for yourself :wink:

  4. #14

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    But you're quoting me out of context. The partial home-trimmed mask is fine if you have also covered the couple of internal light leaks in the film chamber. A complete 6x6 mask blocks out the light from those completely.

    Pierre

  5. #15
    gma
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    Thanks for the input. Since the Holga 4.5x6 mask can be cut to expose a full 6x6 negative I might give it a try. My idea is to replace the lens & shutter to achieve better image quality, even if the replacement lens is old and uncoated. I would not destroy a perfectly good folder or TLR just for the lens. I would only use a salvaged lens & shutter.
    [FONT=Century Gothic][/FONT][SIZE=7][/SIZE][COLOR=DarkOrange][/COLOR] I may be getting older, but I refuse to grow up!

  6. #16
    Leon's Avatar
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    have fun and let us know how you get on

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