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Do you feel bad about your unused cameras?
Old 04-26-2009   #1
EcoLeica
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Do you feel bad about your unused cameras?

Over the last couple of years since I have gotten back into photography i have bought new cameras, sold off old ones and generally had a nice little collection that sits on my desk. But I have always made sure that the cameras I had were being used in some sense because the idea of a camera just sitting there not fulfilling its purpose of taking photos seemed sad. So the other day I managed to grab myself a near mint rolleicord Vb (which I love!) meaning I now have two TLR (the other being a rolleiflex automat). Liking both cameras i set up the flimsy excuse that I will have one for color and one for B&W but in reality I keep grabbin the less complicated Vb whenever I want to do medium format. So the automat is goin to find a new home where someone can use it like it was intended.

Now most of you out there are probably shooters and only keep what you shoot with, but do any of you feel that twang of guilt when you have a fine camera sitting up on the shelf not being used?

Steve
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Old 04-26-2009   #2
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No, no guilt. None at all, well, maybe. I mean sometimes I think the unused gear is crying when I'm not around. But of course that's silly, I mean a camera can't cry, it has no tear ducts. I guess that means cameras are like Rabbits. Poor Rabbits.
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Old 04-26-2009   #3
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Look at it this way. With the advent of digital, I would guess that the number of film cameras out there in the world outnumbers the number of film camera users by a huge margin. So, no I don't feel guilty that I have fine cameras on a shelf that aren't being used; if they weren't on my shelf many of them would probably have found their way into the trash, or buried in someones attic or storage unit. At least I go through and exercise the shutters now and then, and keep them from growing mold and mildew. Of course who knows what will happen to them when I'm gone, but at least for a while they have a reprieve from an ignominious end.
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Old 04-26-2009   #4
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Well sure I guess so. I wouldn't get much for them by selling, so I just keep them.
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Old 04-26-2009   #5
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Extremely bad.
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Old 04-26-2009   #6
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Sometimes it gets so bad that I have to load a film and use them to take pictures with. Terrible thing, guilt.
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Old 04-26-2009   #7
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For me it really depends on the camera. I have some that are less pleasant in use (and/or results) than others, and I feel more guilty about the more pleasant ones sitting there unused. Right now I'm looking at this beautiful pentax 6x7 I have used way too little since I've been moving between places a bit too much to set up my darkroom gear, and I've already got more undeveloped film lying around than I can be bothered with. But it's biding it's time, and soon, soon it will see full use again. We're both very excited.
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Old 04-26-2009   #8
Brian Sweeney
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I feel bad for unused cameras that are broken, or just have something wrong with them. I end up buying them and (many times) repairing them.
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Old 04-26-2009   #9
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I don't feel bad at all about giving unwanted film cameras a good home in their declining years. Sort of like a camera old folks home.

Bob
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Old 04-26-2009   #10
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I punish my cameras, when they've been bad, by not using them. If I really want to drive the point home, I'll set a roll of film near them but not load it.

(jj= just joking)
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Old 04-26-2009   #11
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I generally feel bad about things I've bought that see little use because I believe it to be wasteful (not that that stops me from buying new things!).

With cameras, I only feel bad when I have two of the same and know that one, as a result, will not see any use.

I just bought a Zeiss Ikon, so I've decided to sell my entire Contax G2 kit even though I really like it.

I just pulled my old Rolleicord Vb up to sell because, for the past three years, I've had a Rolleiflex 2.8F and the Vb hasn't been used.

You always think you're going to regret selling these things but, in my experience, you rarely do.
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Old 04-26-2009   #12
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I tend to slowly drift towards accumulation, but when I recognize the trend, I sell things off.
I'll always have more cameras than I "need," because I can fill the same photographic function with several cameras. I don't mind that so much because this isn't just a utilitarian pursuit. I enjoy shooting the same sorts of things with different gear.
At this point, I have only 2 shelf queens, and old Retina IIa that belonged to my Father-in-law (my wife doesn't want it used) and a Canon AE-1 that belongs to my wife (who doesn't use it) and does not appeal to me.
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Old 04-26-2009   #13
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Twang of guilt? Never. Life is too short for guilt. I enjoy my cameras as photographic tools and as fine examples of industrial design. I am just as happy holding them and looking at them as I am using them. Sell my vintage Nikon SP or rare chrome non-anniversary Leica M4-P to someone else to use or admire? Not yet. Unload my uber rare Nikon rangefunder lenses so they can be admired elsewhere. No way.

Next question.
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Old 04-26-2009   #14
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No, because they never stay unused for long.
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Old 04-26-2009   #15
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Not so much guilty, as unhappy. I've simply got too much stuff. I really ought to get rid of a lot of it. Not for the money: for the space, both physical and mental.

Tashi delek,

Roger
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Old 04-26-2009   #16
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I don't feel guilty, but bad in a certain way that I don't use the TLR very much. I want to get more into it, but time and opportunities and such just aren't there.

When I've had an unused camera before, I've always sold it or given it away. I want to keep the TLR to get some experience with that format.
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Old 04-26-2009   #17
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Luckily I don't have any unused cameras, and hope won't have any in the future
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Old 04-26-2009   #18
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I rotate my 4 cameras so I use them all sooner or later. I also make the effort to use each of my lenses. I've reduced my kit to those lenses that I will actually use and dont keep any as trophies.
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Old 04-26-2009   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by telemetre View Post
Luckily I don't have any unused cameras, and hope won't have any in the future
Give it a decade or two...

Tashi delek,

R.
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Old 04-26-2009   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
Not so much guilty, as unhappy. I've simply got too much stuff. I really ought to get rid of a lot of it. Not for the money: for the space, both physical and mental.

Tashi delek,

Roger
Roger, if you send your MPP outfit to a deserving home in Yorkshire, that would really give some space ( physical and mental! )
Yours in anticipation, Dave.
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Old 04-26-2009   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EcoLeica View Post
...but do any of you feel that twang of guilt when you have a fine camera sitting up on the shelf not being used?

Steve
Yes...Yes, I do...are you happy now!!!???
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Old 04-26-2009   #22
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Most of the cameras I own were purchased for professional use and over the last 8 years as the technology improved I have moved across to shooting all digital for my clients. The outcome of this is a collection of film cameras ranging from a Sinar 5x4 to an old Nikon F3 and lots in between collecting dust. Do I feel bad that I still have them? Defiantly not, my regret goes to the ones I sold when I needed the cash to upgrade a bit of kit.

In particular I wish I had never sold the Fuji 6x7 rangefinder I had in my final year at college, what memories it would evoke in me now if I could hold that beautiful piece of equipment. Instead I traded it in as I thought I couldn't justify owning something that was not practical to my profession, it didn't take long for me to realise my mistake.

I wouldn't buy one just to put on the shelf, but once bonded I hate the idea of saying goodbye to them.
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Old 04-26-2009   #23
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Bad, no. foolish yes. since i bought many cams/lens on impulse. sold
quite a bit, but hate to part with them.they are family. just looking at them
sometimes helps me cheer up.

maybe using them would be better
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Old 04-26-2009   #24
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I feel really sorry for my little old Yashica GT which I have not run a film through in over two years! My two Leica's and the Bessa always seem to win, and when I am travelling light it's the Oly XA.
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Old 04-26-2009   #25
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Not guilty, just annoyed they are taking up space and not earning their keep. I have a 2 or 3 cameras I have put one roll through. However, can't be arsed selling them.
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I have a whole closet full of clothes
Old 04-26-2009   #26
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I have a whole closet full of clothes

but I don't wear everything at once; and THIS is only the half of it...
Mary in SW Florida, USA
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Old 04-26-2009   #27
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Like others I don't feel guilty, but I am simply running out of storage space.
I sold off many of my 35mm RF cameras, keeping a few that I really like to use.
I have also begun downsizing the Pentax SLR collection to just the essentials.

Chris
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Old 04-26-2009   #28
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Try not to leave them unused for long...
Sometimes i feel guilty though and load up a roll, i think it puts us back on good terms.
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Old 04-26-2009   #29
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i don't like it when i have too much gear hanging around that i'm not using, makes me feel uncomfortable. it feels good to have what i deem the perfect set of gear. totally psychological, but i'm past the period of experimenting with different gear.
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Old 04-26-2009   #30
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When they cry, I just hit them upside the head. Puts them in their place; they quiet right down. I'd never smack a human or an animal but unruly cameras are another story.
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Old 04-26-2009   #31
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I've been thinking about this for some time, and I've been wondering if it's time to pare down what I own.

I've been thinking of reducing it to just a few brands and selling the rest. There are some that have only been used once or twice, and it's a shame to have a camera if you don't plan to use it.
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Old 04-26-2009   #32
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Exclamation

I have 250 to 300 cameras and I don't have a skerrick of guilt about unused ones because I am a collector, user and repairer in that order. I regularly use a screw Leica or Canon or Nikon rangefinder or some Leica copy, and my collection has a theme of pre1970 35mm cameras with focal plane shutters.
I do feel a bit guilty about the thirty or so cameras I've been intending putting on Ebay.
But as soon as I return from a forthcoming trip to Europe armed with my trusty user Canon L1 and new Nikon D90 I just might get around to selling some of the surplus.
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Old 04-26-2009   #33
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Yes.

I am not a collector, so everything must fulfill its purpose. On the other hand, everything DOES get regular exercise. And it's quite handy to have so many really good cameras, there's always one with the film in it I need at the moment

And I have a grand total of 1 (one) Leicas and a boatload of dumped Nikon FM's etc. Strangely, the boatload was cheaper than that one Leica... and they all work and none of them needed a CLA!
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Old 04-26-2009   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larky View Post
No, no guilt. None at all, well, maybe. I mean sometimes I think the unused gear is crying when I'm not around. But of course that's silly, I mean a camera can't cry, it has no tear ducts. I guess that means cameras are like Rabbits. Poor Rabbits.
Not sure about the tear ducts and crying but cameras seems to reproduce like rabbits... More and more keep showing up at my house. Unfortunate that it is so hard to share my time equally with all of them.
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Old 04-27-2009   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EcoLeica View Post
Now most of you out there are probably shooters and only keep what you shoot with, but do any of you feel that twang of guilt when you have a fine camera sitting up on the shelf not being used?

Steve
I wrote a recent thread about this. Purpose them by devoting one to a specific film-stock. In my case:

- Konica Auto S3: Neopan [email protected]
- Yashica CC: lower speed films (<200) (because of its 1/250 top shutter limitation)
- Fujica Compact Deluxe: Tri-X
- SLR (used mostly for portraits) Neopan 1600
- Iskra: 120 (no choice there...)
- Digital: color

Select the film you want to use - not the camera.
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Old 04-27-2009   #36
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I use most of my cameras fairly regularly, but I have several lenses that get little use (such as 75mm SUmmilux).

I don't feel bad that they sit on the shelf, I feel bad that I have so little free time these days (years) to pursue for hobby.
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Old 04-27-2009   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
Give it a decade or two...

Tashi delek,

R.
now this prophecy is worrying, have to be even more restrained
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Old 04-28-2009   #38
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I look at it this way, there are 52 weeks in a year, I don't have 52 cameras, so in fact, I need to get some more...
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Old 05-01-2009   #39
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Actually, I feel sorry for me, not the camera, because I can't use these wonderful mechancial works. A few weeks ago I went to the Bagnall Camera swap near Anaheim, CA to sell a few things. My friends and I talked about using our gear--my friends have moved to digital. I told them I had an M6 and and M3 that I rarely used because I didn't want to break them and I used my Bessa-R instead...duh! As soon as I said it I realized...what kind of warped thinking is that??? Well the Bessa-R & -L are sold as well as most of my LTM stuff and I'm getting back to the M's. I think we'll all be happier.
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Old 05-01-2009   #40
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I own four cameras, all of which are loaded with B&W film. I usually take one of them with me when I go for a walk.
The problem is, I don’t pick the same one every time. So it can take a couple/few months for me to shoot an entire roll of film in anyone of them.
They all get used, sparingly, over time.
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