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'How to' guide for converting a Polaroid Land Camera for modern film and batteries
Old 01-19-2012   #1
zzpza
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'How to' guide for converting a Polaroid Land Camera for modern film and batteries

I recently wrote an Instructable detailing how to setup a Polaroid Land Camera that uses 100 series Polaroid film (the metal or plastic folding rangefinder cameras from the 1970's). It shows how to modify the camera to use modern AAA batteries and Fuji's FP-3000B/FP-100C instant film. It's aimed at people who don't mind getting their hands dirty (so to speak). I thought it might be of use to people here looking to get a Polaroid Land Camera into a condition that they could use with the minimum of hassle (finding obsolete batteries) and expense (finding viable Polaroid film packs). Here it is. Enjoy!
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Old 01-19-2012   #2
Ezzie
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Coincidence has it I read the guide yesterday, and today I got a note in the mail telling me to pick up my 250 at the post office. Look forward to some tinkering during the weekend. Thanks.
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Old 01-19-2012   #3
bwidjaja
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zzpza, thank you for the link. what another coincidence, I just inherited a Polaroid Land Camera last week. Now I have a project to look forward to...
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Old 01-19-2012   #4
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hey...thanks for the link.... recently gotten into the fuji instax wide thingy and generally interested in polaroid...
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Old 01-20-2012   #5
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Thanks guys, seems my timing was most fortuitous!
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Old 01-20-2012   #6
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Good and clear instructions.
Even I can follow it
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Old 01-21-2012   #7
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Excellent contribution to the world.
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Old 04-15-2012   #8
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Thanks for the guide. I finally broke off the springs from the back, and now I can finally feed the Fuji film through the camera without tearing the strips.

One question though - does the film pack area that the springs use to rest on need some type of support? Your posting seems to imply that it's not needed.

I glued in some foam (cut from the foam strip in the middle of the Fuji cartridge pack) in this area, just in case. It may be totally useless, but it seems to make me feel better.
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Old 04-15-2012   #9
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I have a Polaroid Land Camera 700, which I plan to convert to 4x5. Any ideas how to recalibrate the rangefinder ?
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Old 04-18-2012   #10
zzpza
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Lai View Post
Thanks for the guide.

One question though - does the film pack area that the springs use to rest on need some type of support? Your posting seems to imply that it's not needed.
You're welcome.

I just remove the springs, I haven't had to replace them with anything on the cameras I've done this mod on. I've since used an original Polaroid 100 (Blue Film) pack in one of the cameras without trouble also.

Quote:
Originally Posted by timor View Post
I have a Polaroid Land Camera 700, which I plan to convert to 4x5. Any ideas how to recalibrate the rangefinder ?
The Polaroid 700 was (if I remember correctly) an instant roll film camera, not a camera that uses type 100 film, which I am more familiar with. However, as long as you are not changing the lens, and you keep the lens to film distant the same, there is no need to change or adjust the rangefinder.
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Old 04-29-2012   #11
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Wish I had seen this tip, about removing spring, before removing a Polaroid 100 back from my 150. Now I have a light leak so I have to do it again:^(
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Old 04-29-2012   #12
Ezzie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zzpza View Post
You're welcome.

I just remove the springs, I haven't had to replace them with anything on the cameras I've done this mod on. I've since used an original Polaroid 100 (Blue Film) pack in one of the cameras without trouble also.



The Polaroid 700 was (if I remember correctly) an instant roll film camera, not a camera that uses type 100 film, which I am more familiar with. However, as long as you are not changing the lens, and you keep the lens to film distant the same, there is no need to change or adjust the rangefinder.
You'll no matter which conversion you plan on doing not be able to retain the same focal plane as it were. You'll need to move the lens infinity stop backwards to compensate. To attain 4x5 coverage (the existing coverage is 3.25 x 4.25, you will have to position the new film plane an inch or so backwards, or open up the film gate and make a new set of bellows to fit.

A place to start would be www.instantoptions.com

Also google (in conjunction with Polaroid conversion), Noah Shwartz, Dean Jones (Razzle, Razzledog), David Harms and Byron.

And by no means look up Littman, Litman (William, Bill or Guilermo - depending on what he decides to call himself). You are bound to come over his rants sooner or later, but try to spare yourself of them (He's evidently patented the process of converting a Pathfinder to 4x5, and defends it verociously, no matter that his idea was at the time of patenting already a 40 year old one.)
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RF: Leica M4-2 | Royal 35-M | Polaroid 110A/600SE hybrid
VF: DIY 4x5 | DIY 6x17 | Voigtländer Vito CL | Foth Derby | Welta Weltix | Smena Symbol | Lomo'Instax
SLR: Canon EF | Pentacon SIX | Pentax SP1000 | Pentax SV
TLR: Rolleiflex 2.8E3 | DUO TLR
CSC: Fuji X-E1
Pinhole: 6x17 Vermeer | ONDU 6x6 | DIY 4x5 | DIY 6x24

My Flickr
Silver Halides - Pictures in B&W
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