About Me

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I take pictures of things. Mostly with film. Mostly with cameras. I am an engineer by trade. What really makes me happy, though, is to find an old camera at a swap meet or antique store and bring it back into working order with a few hours at the workbench. I then like to take them out and shoot some film. This blog is in large part the result of that activity.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

saturdays with Shea

On Saturdays when Mer is working Shea and I get to spend the day together.  This usually involves the morning at the park followed by a meal at Shea's favorite day-with-dad fine dining establishment, McDonald's.  Four piece chicken nuggets for her, filet-o-fish (contains some actual fish) for me.

This particular Saturday I took my Pentax MX.  I'll get into the camera geekiness after the photos...

Pentax MX Arista Premium 100 50mm f1.4

Pentax MX Arista Premium 100 50mm f1.4

Pentax MX Arista Premium 100 50mm f1.4

Pentax MX
Nikon D7000 55mm f3.5 microNikkor
The aforementioned Pentax MX.  The MX was introduced in 1976 and made until 1985 and is a fully mechanical, all manual camera.  It has a cloth, horizontal, focal plane shutter with speeds up to 1/1000.  It is also quite compact.  The 'M' series of bodies that Pentax produced in the mid '70s were designed to compete with the then new Olympus OM bodies.  These were considerably smaller than the SLRs which came before.  The entire camera industry of the 70s and early 80s were focused on making the cameras smaller and more electronic.  In this respect the MX bucks the trend as it has no automation of any sort.  Assuming that they haven't been dropped the only issues that they typically have at this point, 30 odd years later is a dead meter or dried up lubricant which locks up the mechanism.  The latter condition is easy to resolve.  The dead meter is more complicated.
This particular MX had both dried up grease and a dead meter when I bought it on EBay for cheap.  I happened to have a donor MX body which had been dropped quite heavily on its prism, fracturing the prism and significantly denting (crushing, really) the top.  I pulled the meter mechanism and electronics out of that one and transplanted it into this one.  The body is quite worn and features some vintage engraving right on the front. I am really sad that it was quite common to do this back in the day.  I suppose it made recovering your stolen camera easier, but dang, why do it right on the front?  Otherwise, it works nicely even if it is pretty ugly.

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