Tuesday, 31 January 2012

photo from 127 camera No.1 - Gelto D-III

Dragon Dance by pho-Tony
Dragon Dance, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

This is the first time I have put a "proper" 127 film in this camera, last time I used it I re-spooled some 35mm film onto a 127 backing paper, and while I liked the results, there was loss of focus at the centres of the pictures, presumably due to the film not laying flat. This Macocolor film shows no sign of the focus problem, so I think my theory was correct.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

photo from 127 camera No.5 - Babette

yellow taxi by pho-Tony
yellow taxi, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

The quality of the image is very much as I would have expected, but I least I got something!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Winter 127 Day

Friday 27th January is a "127" day, in this case the American convention of month:year applies, so month 1, day 27 = 127.
Currently I have films in two 127 cameras, and hope to use both of them tomorrow.

127 camera No. 6 - Zeiss Ikon Baby Ikonta

Zeiss Ikon Baby Ikonta by pho-Tony
Zeiss Ikon Baby Ikonta, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.
This is possibly the smallest folding 127 camera ever made. A range of lens and shutter combinations were available, this is one of the more basic models with a Novar lens and a Derval shutter. I've never used it before, and have loaded it with a roll of Efke 100.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

127 Camera No. 5 - Babette

After taking 11 exposures in the Gelto D-III I transferred the roll into this camera to finish it off. The Babette is a very crudely made toy camera taking 16 exposures per roll. The shutter wasn't working at first, but a tiny squirt of WD40 got it going again. I would never use WD40 on a proper camera, but there wasn't really anything to loose with this one.

Friday, 20 January 2012

photo from 127 camera No.3 - Ihagee Parvola

historical kiln by pho-Tony
historical kiln, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

This is a piece of Sheffield's industrial history, tucked away in a side street, and protected by railings.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

photo from 127 camera No.4 - Coronet 4-4

grey gables by pho-Tony
grey gables, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

Even some of the very basic 127 cameras have double exposure prevention, but this one doesn't, so I took advantage of this to make some double exposures.

Sunday, 15 January 2012

127 Camera No.4 - Coronet 4-4 mark II

Coronet 4-4 mark II by pho-Tony
Coronet 4-4 mark II, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

The Coronet 4-4 is even simpler than the Ilford Sprite, it has one setting only. I transferred the part used film from the Sprite into this one. Scans to follow soon.

photo from 127 camera No.2 - Ilford Sprite

St. George's Church by pho-Tony
St. George's Church, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

The sunny day was ideal for this very simple camera, for this shot I used the "B&W" aperture, which I suspect is around f16.

photo from 127 camera No.2 - Ilford Sprite

weed by pho-Tony
weed, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

I took 8 exposures with the Sprite, and then swapped the film mid-roll into camera No. 4, a Coronet 4-4, which also takes square photos. The image is quite sharp near the centre, but drops of noticeably towards the corners.

Friday, 13 January 2012

Kodacolor 127 rollfilm

Kodacolor 127 rollfilm by pho-Tony
Kodacolor 127 rollfilm, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

One of two rolls of Kodakolor 127 film that arrived this week. They expired in 1991, so I will add a couple of stops to the exposure to compensate for loss of sensitivity.

127 Camera No.3 - Ihagee Parvola

Ihagee Parvola by pho-Tony
Ihagee Parvola, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.

I am using this camera in week 107 of my 52 cameras in 52 weeks project, it only takes 8 photos per roll, so I will need to be selective...

Sunday, 8 January 2012

127 Camera No.2 - Ilford Sprite

Ilford Sprite by pho-Tony
Ilford Sprite, a photo by pho-Tony on Flickr.
This camera is from the basic end of the spectrum, but not quite the most basic as it has 2 apertures, marked "Colour" and "B & W", I guess these are probably f11 and f16 respectively. I've put a roll of Efke 100 black and white film in, and will take it with me on days when the light looks promising.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

127 camera No. 1 - Gelto D-III

I used the Gelto D-III in week 10 of my 52 cameras in 52 weeks project, but that was before I had got any 127 film, and I re-spooled some 35mm film in order to use the camera. There was a problem with out of focus centres, most likley caused by the re-spooled film not lying flat in the film plane. I liked the results, but I think this gorgeous little gold camera deserves a proper roll of 127 film, so I've loaded it with Macocolor ISO200 colour negative film. The f3.5 lens. and the range of shutter speeds means that I should be able to use it over the next few dull winter weeks.

plans for the year

I don't have a definite plan, but will probably have a couple of 127 cameras on the go at any one time, one simple and lightweight that I can slip in a pocket, and perhaps a more sophisticated, and possibly heavier model to give flexibility with regard to prevailing lighting conditions.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012


This year, 2012 is the centenary of Kodak's introduction of the 127 film format. Smaller than the then available films, it was pivotal in the spread of popularity of photography among the masses. Early users included those fighting in the First World War, millions of the “Kodak Vest Pocket” were made, and became known as the “soldier's camera”.

The format was still the mainstay of family snapshot photos until the 1960s, but then 35mm cameras became more popular and affordable, and finally other more foolproof systems such as the 126 cartridge took over the point-and-shoot market. Kodak ceased production of 127 film in 1995, and it is now hard to come by, but one or two manufacturers are still producing it, unlike the 126 cartridges which effectively killed off 127.

Many of my 127 cameras are very basic models, aimed at the holiday snap market, and only usable in bright sunlight, so these will have to be used over the summer months, but there are a good number of models with variable apertures and shutter speeds, so no lighting condition is out of reach.

Looking back though the last two years of my 52 cameras in 52 weeks project, I have already used nineteen 127 format cameras, but I have plenty left, mainly cheap and simple ones, though some are more sophisticated.

I have decided that this year, as well as continuing with my camera of the week, I will use as many 127 cameras as I can, though not on a strict timetable, it will be a chance to revisit some old friends as well as to try out some new ones.