Old but new

I recently acquired a 1950s vintage Zeiss Mess-Ikonta 524/16 folder camera. It’s in good condition, but I had to repair a small hole in the bellows and then, subsequently, re-align the rangefinder patch when I discovered the camera wouldn’t focus to infinity. Also, I’ve noticed that the shutter sticks on speeds less than 1/50th of a second. This isn’t the end of the world though, as I don’t plan on shooting in dark locations or using long exposures, so I can probably live with it. For a sixty-something year old camera, I guess these things should be expected to some degree anyway. Whatever its age, it’s still a new camera to me.

Here’s it is. A few dings, scratches, and signs of age, but still a lovely little machine:

Zeiss Mess-Ikonta 524/16

It’s weighty, but easily pocketable, and although the uncoupled rangefinder setup is slightly more complicated than what I’m used to, it was easy enough to figure out how it all worked. For anyone unfamiliar with this setup, an uncoupled rangefinder has separate focusing for the rangefinder patch and the lens. What you have to do is first focus the camera with the rangefinder, then look at the resulting distance setting on the focus wheel and then manually focus the lens to the same setting.

I took it out at the weekend for a test run with a roll of Fomapan 100, The weather was a little overcast to start with, necessitating wider apertures to be used, but brightened up after a while and allowed me to stop it down to f/11 and smaller.

On scanning the negs, I was a little disappointed to see that the first frames were a little soft. However, once I got to the exposures shot at narrower apertures, I could see the camera really come into its own, with very pleasing, sharp and contrasty photographs.

I’ve not uploaded many of them yet, but will post some of the softer images when I do. In the meantime though, here’s one of the results of the lens being stopped down. This is a couple of buildings in Paradise Square, in Sheffield.

Pretty, pretty good, as Larry David might say, I think.

FILM - Paradise Square

Zeiss Mess-Ikonta 524/16 & Fomapan 100.

Taken on 22 October 2017

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Autumn crunch

In the glasshouse at Clumber Park, there were lots of selections of autumn produce from the gardens on display. I though the colours came out particularly nicely on this shot of some apples.

FILM - Autumn crunch

Nikon F70, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF-D & Agfa CT Precisa.

Taken on 17 October 2017

Autumn fayre

I spotted this wheelbarrow full of various squashes the other day at Clumber Park. The light in the glasshouse was lovely too.

FILM - Autumn fayre

Nikon F70, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF-D & Agfa CT Precisa.

Taken on 17 October 2017

All manner of stuff

I saw this table covered in a variety of interesting subject matter at Brodsworth Hall at the weekend. Apart from a few obvious candidates, I have no idea what many of the things actually are, or their purpose.

FILM - It happens here in this house

Nikon F70, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF-D & Agfa CT Precisa.

Taken on 15 October 2017

Lacking in autumn colour

I’ve been out on a couple of days recently, camera loaded with slide film, in the hopes of getting some nice autumnal scenes. Sadly, there doesn’t seem to be all that much autumn colour around at present. There are a few trees ablaze with vibrant shades of yellow, orange and red, but on the whole they’re either still green or have already lost their leaves completely. Maybe I just need to wait another week or two.

Anyway, here’s a ‘bit’ of autumn colour.

FILM - Chestnut leaf

Nikon F70, Nikkor 28-80 f/3.5-5.6 AF-D & Agfa CT Precisa.

Taken on 15 October 2017

Fishing on the Wharf

I went to the Boston Spa camera fair at the weekend (where I bought a Zeiss Ikon medium format folder – which needs a small bellows repair before I can use it, and a Zuiko 135mm f/3.5 lens for my OM-1). I took the Nikon F70 with me and a roll of Agfa CT Precisa to shoot. I chose the Nikon as it’s in-built metering is far superior to any other 35mm camera I own, and I wanter to try and make the most of what was my very first roll f slide film. I shot a few frames at Boston Spa, then a bunch more when I stopped off at Brodsworth Hall on the way home. The remaining frames were shot on a day off yesterday at Clumber Park.

My initial findings are that:

  • Seeing a set of slides that you took for the first time is a magical experience.
  • Slide film really DOES have a lot less latitude when it comes to shadows and highlights (although none of my shots suffered too badly as a result)
  • My usual basic processing techniques in Lightroom don’t transfer from reversal to positive film (not without some tweaks, anyway)
  • The shots taken with my 50mm prime are superior to the ones with the 28-80mm zoom.

Overall though, despite my hit rate not being quite what I usually get (although I might’ve been rushing the roll a bit), I’m pretty happy with the results, and there are one or two lovely picturs (by my standards, at least) amongst the rest.

The shot here isn’t one of the best (although I do really like the composition, with the angler at bottom left), but it’s the only one I’ve uploaded to Flickr so far.

I’ll definitely be shooting more slide film at some point though.

FILM - River Wharf fishing

Nikon F70, Nikkor 28-80 f/3.5-5.6 AF-D & Agfa CT Precisa.

Taken on 15 October 2017

A crane over Camden

We managed to catch some nice weather on our trip to Camden last month. On the first day, at least – the Sunday was a little grim and overcast.

FILM - A crane over Camden

Pentax P30T, Rikenon 50mm f/2 & Kodak Portra 160.

Taken on 9 September 2017