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INSTAFRANKENROID - Hacking a Polaroid land camera for Instax.
Old 02-16-2020   #1
Rotarysmp
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INSTAFRANKENROID - Hacking a Polaroid land camera for Instax.

Hello Rangefinder enthusiasts,

I have been a member here for years, but with long periods of inactivity as I tend to cycle through my hobbies (Photography, guitar, machining). After an affair with Leica's I was seduced by Polaroid rangefinders.

My daughter bought an Instax 210 while travelling, and has been using it a lot. This bumped my enthusiasm for a project which has been on the back burner for a while. I hacked a 100 Automatic Land camera with a Mamiya 105 f3.5 from a TLR a few years ago, and then the last call for pack film followed shortly after. Having consumed all but one remaining box of FP-3000B, that camera has lurked in the deepest recess of the closet, till now.

There are plenty of bodged up Instax wides gaffer taped to Land cameras and Pathfinders, but I hadn't seen much information on optimising such modifications. The aim being to couple the excellent Zeiss combined range/viewfinder accurately to a fast and sharp lens with manual aperture and shutter control and a flash shoe.

Here is the first episode of my attempt to document such an Instafrankenroid.
https://youtu.be/UHYeu-3LmRk

In an idea world, hacking Instax wide to the original film gate of a Polaroid 180/190, while keeping the rangefinder system would be the holy grail. As you can see, the design features central to both designs are unfortunately in direct conflict in the upper focus arm/development roller area.
Mark
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Old 02-25-2020   #2
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I just uploaded the second installment of my hacking Instax wide onto the Polaroid 100 automatic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RuOGkFgX2I
Mark
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Old 02-26-2020   #3
JoeV
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Polaroids are exposed onto the front of the print, hence the need for the mirror in the camera, to ensure the image on the print isn’t reversed. But Instax prints are exposed onto the back of the print, which is why Instax cameras don’t need a mirror. When the print is ejected, an opaque black film is spread on the rear of the emulsion to protect it from light while self-developing. I’m interested to see how your project solves the Polaroid/Instax front/back exposure difference.
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Old 02-26-2020   #4
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Hi JoeV,

Pack film cameras also have no mirror. They also exposed the negative, which then transfers the image to the positive during development. In pack film the negative and positive are pealed apart after development.

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Old 02-27-2020   #5
Godfrey
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Fun and very creative work!

I've got all the bits for my Mamiya Press 23/Instax SQ custom camera pulled together except for the key piece I have to fabricate: the spacer that will hold the lens mount. You're inspiring me to get off my butt and get on with it!



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Old 02-27-2020   #6
Rotarysmp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
Fun and very creative work!

I've got all the bits for my Mamiya Press 23/Instax SQ custom camera pulled together except for the key piece I have to fabricate: the spacer that will hold the lens mount. You're inspiring me to get off my butt and get on with it!



G

Good on you. I love seeing peoples camera hacks. They tend to be very varied and creative. I hope my Instafrankenroid Nr.1 actually works.
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Old 03-01-2020   #7
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This is what the Instafrankenroid looks like so far. I was hoping to start testing it, but the film plane is about 7.5mm too far back to make infinity focus, so a new lens board will also be required.
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File Type: jpg P3010002.jpg (28.6 KB, 19 views)
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Old 03-01-2020   #8
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Couldn't resist putting a film pack through it to see if there are any light leaks. There are none. At the moment, it can focus much closer than it should, but you have to guess. This one sort of worked. Shot at F16 and 1/60, with the focus and framing just guess work.
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File Type: jpg img008.jpg (17.7 KB, 16 views)
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Old 03-01-2020   #9
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Here is the latest episode of my camera hacking;
https://youtu.be/WBWwJdtoIPo
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Old 6 Days Ago   #10
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Hi all,


After a short hiatus, it was time to make the new lens standard to adjust for the displaced film plane and lens replacement. I am pretty happy how this has gone. There is some front focusing, which was to be expected due to the switch from the Polaroid 114mm lens which the range finder was calibrated for, to the Mamiya 105mm. I guess diving into the rangefinder mechanism and making a different cam is future project.

Here i the latest video update.
https://youtu.be/xgzRbOfX9Ao

Mark
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Old 5 Days Ago   #11
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Great work, well thought out.
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Old 5 Days Ago   #12
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Thanks. I took it out for a bit of fresh air. Instax has a razor sharp exposure range. Certainly a challenge to get decent results from it.
Mark
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