Film – a slight return

I think I may have just made a rod for my own back.

I had shot film for years, had my own darkroom (until my daughter came along) but have never missed film once I went to digital. Then, the other day, I made a big mistake. I have three old film cameras sitting on a shelf and I happened to pick up my wife’s old Olympus Trip 35. “I loved that camera”, she said over my shoulder, “it was brilliant for what I wanted. I’ve not liked any of my digital cameras the same”.

Now, Mrs M is not a keen photographer in that she uses a camera only whilst on holiday.  However I have noticed that she doesn’t use her little Nikon much when we are away  – or her camera phone. However, in the loft she has shoeboxes full of prints taken on the Trip 35 in the past.

I had a look at the Trip a few days later, tested the solenoid meter, the apertures and the shutter blades (only 2 of them) and all seemed to work perfectly well, although the low light “red lever” that blocks the shutter from firing was a little iffy.  The light seals had also gone and the leather grip was peeling at one edge. 

A plan was forming in my mind. I went online and had a look for light seals that fitted the Trip . Milly’s Cameras had them and new leather for a grip in stock so I bought them. I had a look at a video online about dismantling the Trip to clean it and decided to do that as well. Thinking about it, I probably should have tried to clean it first before buying the seals and leather, just in case I can’t put it back as it was or I lose a tiny screw.

The next thing that I thought I had covered was film. Mrs M is not going to be taking pictures with the trip that often, so I thought that buying the film for holidays and trips was going to be alright. I had checked about getting the film developed and scanned to digital which for the number of times the service would be used isn’t too bad. What I didn’t really take into account was the difficulty of obtaining and cost of the film. Crickey! The cost of a 24 roll of colour print film now is what I used to pay for a 36 roll of pre-paid slide film back in the day. It also seems that the pandemic has hit the supply of colour print film and so it is more difficult to obtain at the moment. 

Nonetheless, I plan to go ahead and do the work on the Trip 35, run a film through it, get it processed and a digital scan made of the images. Once I’ve done that, I’ll post the results on ASV.

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