from time to time i get asked what kind of camera i have or use or like or like to use or …
my current favorite is a cyclone #3. it is what is called a magazine camera, or a falling plate camera.
if you google “cyclone camera” you will probably find an advertisement for it over on flickr. i don’ t know the guy
so i’d rather not hot link to his site. it was a box camera that had 2 speeds, as they all seemed to have, I ( instantaneous) and T ( time )
the I speed was maybe 1/50th S F maybe 13? i don’t know they were pretty simple and are still a lot of fun!
basically the way they work is there are sleeves that sheets of glass with emulsion used to go in, they are called septums.
my #3 has 8 septums, i think it is missing 4 of them but they don’t appear without a camera, and i really don’t need ANOTHER camera.
you can put a piece of black cardboard in the septum and then either film or paper if you coat your own glass plates like me, you can load them without the cardboard
and WITH glass plates. the slide in vertically one after another, then the blank and then the back which has a big bedspring to apply pressure to the septums.
you make your exposures and jiggle the knob and each exposed septum FALLS to the floor. thats where the name comes from.
i used to buy smaller formats of this style of camera. they came in all sorts of different sizes, landscape shapes portrait shapes, ( long and skinny ) and
sometimes had elaborate shutter controls and apertures. the #3 is pretty simple … i aperture and 1 shutter speed and T …i also have a #5 that i recently started to use
it has 3 apertures, and the exposed plates can be retrieved from the bottom of the camera … it is smaller too, sort of dainty if you can call a wooden box camera dainty.
anyways i started using the #3 a year or 2 ago and really enjoy how it works. the lens has a sweet spot, i think, at around infinity ( joke )
its big and clunky and seems to work fine, except once in a while the septums get jammed and i have to wack the camera … and people sometimes stare.
funny thing is, no one asks me anything when im using the camera.
i tend to coat paper myself using bottled emulsion. i use liquid light a lot, and coat paper 2 coats. the last batch i did was in the spring, and i just started to use it.
they turned out OK, sort of. i also am using 10year old polymax fb paper. its probably way older than 10 years old seeing it was all given to me about 13 years ago by a friend in portsmouth nh. it was thelast single weight paper made by kodak, and it seems to hold up well. even if it didn’t i would use it seeing it is kind of foggy, and less contrast is always good when shooting paper negatives.
i also went into providence …
i went again today, but the paper is still drying on the line ..