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Kodak Pony II test roll
Old 10-19-2018   #1
tunalegs
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Kodak Pony II test roll

I won a filthy Kodak Pony II on ebay for $1.99. Cleaned it up and loaded it with Kodak Ektar.



I had seen examples of photos from this camera before, none of which seemed very good, despite the Anastar lens supposedly being very sharp. The problem, others said, was the slow shutter speed (about 1/50th) coupled with the cameras somewhat awkward ergonomics, leading to camera shake.



Having lots of experience with old, slow, cameras - I thought I'd be able to tame the shake and get excellent results. Not so! Literally every other shot was blurred by camera shake. The sharpest results interestingly enough were mostly the ones taken vertically.



Technically, the camera is very simple. It has a single shutter speed, and a range of selectable EV stops. The body is plastic, and a bit oversized considering there is nothing really complicated that has to fit into it. The one nice thing about it is the decently sized viewfinder which was quite large by 1950's standards. They were introduced in the late 1950's, and discontinued in the mid 1960's - presumably because the Instamatic was going to be the consumer grade camera of The Future for Kodak.


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr
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Old 10-19-2018   #2
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Very nice!
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Old 10-19-2018   #3
Steve M.
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The shots that were sharp look....sharp! Very nice indeed, especially from a camera that was designed by someone named Crapsey. Keeps the expectations low. I've always said that if someone can't get great shots from a $10 camera they should just hang it up, and you did it from a camera that cost under $2. That Ektar film looks beautiful.

For anyone interested in what these things look like, see below

http://photojottings.com/kodak-pony-ii-review/
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Old 10-19-2018   #4
besk
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It was my first camera. I still have it and the photos that I took with it.
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Old 10-20-2018   #5
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Nice!!!!!!
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Old 10-20-2018   #6
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Nice images and neat idea for a thread.

I have my grandmother's old Kodak Pony, which appears to be quite a bit different from the Pony II. Mine has four shutter speeds: 1/25, 1/50, 1/100, and 1/200. (I also discovered, quite by accident, that it has a neat collapsible lens!)

I now see that mine has an Anaston lens (51mm, f/4.5). Do you know the difference between this lens and yours?


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Old 10-21-2018   #7
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The one on the Pony II is 44mm. But I think they're both four element lenses.
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Old 10-21-2018   #8
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I just googled "kodak anaston" and found a thread on photo.net. Here is a pertinent post in quotes and the link:



"From the book "Photographic Optics" by Greenleaf, the Anaston design is of simple triplet construction, as opposed to the four element (Tessar) design of the Kodak Anastar, or Anastigmat Special."


https://www.photo.net/discuss/thread...lenses.186350/


So, it looks like you got the better lens and I got a better shutter.


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Old 10-24-2018   #9
tunalegs
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Some more photos...
Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


Untitled by Berang Berang, on Flickr


These photos all show the slight softness that affected about half the roll. Not really visible in smaller sizes, but noticeable in larger sizes. Most people getting album sized prints in the 1950's probably wouldn't have noticed - but I can't imagine the frustration it must have caused people taking Kodachrome slides for projection! And obviously that's why a slow shutter speed was chosen, to work with Kodachrome.


And CMur12, I remember reading in an old book that Kodak was known for wasting good lenses on bad shutters (to paraphrase, I don't believe the author was quite that harsh, but that's what they were aiming at).
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