Mastering my Minolta!

It made it! (Thanks Mom!)

The old family camera was shipped over to me last week. I’ve been having a blast wrapping my hands and head around this fully manual, mechanical, and metal beast. I just love the feel of it in my hands, and the sound of that shutter drop is perfection.

My Minolta

The first few rolls through it were a little, let’s just say – off. Dialling in the exposure meter was one obstacle. The voltage differential of the new battery from the original model changes the meter sensitivity. The easiest way to account for most of the difference is to set the ISO down 1/3 stop. That works for now.

Also, I was a bit out of practice developing film. I think I went a little crazy on agitation. It also didn’t help that I pushed the film 2 stops. Another lesson learned. Also, I learned a few things about my Patterson reels. Lesson #53; Make sure to check and clean the ball bearings before starting a new batch. The bearings should slide back and forth easily, so that it will allow film to slide into the reels without much effort.

I was having so much trouble loading the reels that the film kept getting stuck. It was frustrating and I ended up damaging some of the film. They were just test shots, so it really didn’t matter, but good to keep in mind for the future.

Check your reels!

Also, a squeegee can help clear the negatives of excess moisture. Soak the squeegee in warm water while you are working with the developing tank, so that it is nice and soft. Then bang off the excess moisture before you gently (very gently) run it down the entire strip (one single movement) and hang your negatives.

Soak your squeegee!

Anyway, I have some new rolls to develop this weekend and this time I am going to pay much closer attention to agitation and stop pushing film for awhile. I love everything about B&W, film developing though. Working with an old manual camera, mixing the chemicals, slopping the tank around, hanging, cutting and scanning negatives.


This is too much fun.

Wet dog is wet…

2 thoughts on “Mastering my Minolta!

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