How I hacked Polaroid Massive Shot to shoot Instax movie

Launched in 1971, the Polaroid Massive Shot was a cool, inexperienced plastic digital camera that was constructed for one factor: portraits. The plastic behemoth is solely designed, utilizing a set focus 200mm, single component plastic meniscus lens. The grip has a stereoscopic rangefinder built-in in it, which makes framing and reaching focus simple. Focal size is mounted at roughly three ft, emphasizing the portrait centrality of this digital camera. The shutter velocity is a static 1/52 second, mixed with an adjustable aperture of f56, f36 or f24. A small aperture and slightly gradual shutter velocity meant most “usually” lit pictures can be underexposed, particularly indoors, so most pictures would require the usage of a flash.

For the flash the Massive Shot makes use of Magicubes, that are an explosive, 4 use, disposable flash dice. There’s a massive Fresnel diffuser for the flash that’s constructed into the entrance of the digital camera, which softens shadows and makes the flash a lot much less harsh. A favourite of Warhol, he used the digital camera to shoot dozens of portraits, typically utilizing the ensuing Polaroids as foundation for his screen-printing artwork.

The Movie and The Drawback

The Massive Shot consumes Sort 100 Pack Movie: a ten shot, peel aside prompt movie produced by Polaroid from the early Sixties till the mid-2000s. Fujifilm additionally produced a model known as Fuji 100C, which was discontinued in 2016. This discontinuation marked the loss of life of pack movie and consequently, the cameras that used it. Costs of the now-expired Fuji 100C are extremely excessive, typically fetching over $100 for a single pack. There may be an effort by SuperSense, a small Austrian firm, to provide and promote Sort 100 movie known as One Instantaneous. Supplied in shade and black and white, this peel aside movie is priced at $50 for 3 single shot packs: an incredible product however nonetheless fairly expensive.

As talked about earlier, the Massive Shot makes use of disposable Magicubes for its flash. New outdated inventory Magicubes can simply be discovered on eBay for reasonable, however a reusable possibility can be most popular, because it’s more likely to be inexpensive. So, to conclude, you possibly can shoot costly, expired Fuji 100c or new, equally priced One Instantaneous in your Massive Shot, each averaging over $10 per shot. And when utilizing a flash (more often than not capturing), new outdated inventory Magicubes discovered on eBay, storage gross sales, your grandparent’s closet, and so on. should suffice, probably including to the associated fee. That is all a bit discouraging for somebody who desires to experiment with the Massive Shot, slightly than have it acquire mud on a show shelf. All hope shouldn’t be misplaced, properly, not for this at the very least.


An thought

There are nonetheless many inexpensive and obtainable prompt movies being manufactured at the moment. One among these movies, is Fuji Instax 210, utilized in Fuji’s standard Broad collection cameras. It may be discovered for round $10 a pack containing 10 pictures, comparatively low cost… and inspiring! Sort 100 Pack Movie has a measurement of 108mm x 83mm, whereas Fuji Instax 210 is 108mm x 86mm. See what I see? A measly three millimeters is all that’s stopping us from cramming our Instax 210 into the Massive Shot! Nevertheless, there are just a few different issues to contemplate earlier than we cram our Massive Shot filled with Instax. To start out, movie measurement simply refers back to the dimensions of the piece of movie; it contains the size for the chem pack and movie border, not simply the scale of the publicity. Nor does this dimension embody
the scale of the plastic housing the movie is held in. Furthermore, Instax is 800 ISO, a lot sooner than typical Sort 100 packfilm, which was generally 100 ISO.

Sadly, not like Sort 100 packfilm, Instax doesn’t produce a detrimental, solely a constructive. There are many different variations like shade, chemistry, and so on. however these are inconsequential for our functions. Concerning the Magicubes/flash, numerous digital flash conversions had been offered concurrently Magicubes. These are identical to every other fundamental digital camera flash; nonetheless, their set off is designed to suit a Magicube mount. One among these conversions is known as the Acme-Lite 138, which makes use of commonplace AA batteries, that are less expensive and simpler to search out than Magicubes. I bought one on eBay for $15, however there are various different fashions that accomplish the identical factor, all which may be discovered on-line for not very a lot cash.

Potential Options and Design

So, we’ve discovered a present, cheap, prompt movie and a reusable flash, now what? Can we simply stuff a pack of Instax 210 behind the Massive Shot and name it a day? Effectively, though a bit brutish, it does work. A pack of Instax with its plastic housing is simply barely bigger than a pack of Sort 100, so it gained’t sit completely, making closing the again cowl a problem. I did handle to take just a few pictures utilizing the next methodology: The Massive Shot and Instax is introduced right into a darkroom or a darkroom bag. Eradicating the Instax from its protecting baggie, the sheet of plastic in entrance of the primary slide of movie is then eliminated. The Instax is then loaded into the Massive Shot, with the movie dealing with the publicity space and centering it as a lot as attainable. The rear door is closed, but it surely requires a little bit of drive, for the reason that Instax pack is a bit bigger than Sort 100. As soon as closed and faraway from the darkroom/darkroom bag the Massive Shot is able to take a photograph!

After the photograph is taken, the Massive Shot is introduced again into the dar room/darkroom bag to take away the Instax movie pack. The Instax can now be loaded into any Fuji Broad prompt digital camera. As soon as the Fuji Broad is loaded it may be faraway from the darkroom/darkroom bag, the lens coated, after which a photograph is taken. Protecting the lens makes positive the movie is not going to be re-exposed, but it surely does ship it by means of the rollers of the digital camera, bursting the chem pack, thus growing the shot. This seems like an extended course of, however I used to be capable of switch movie between the Massive Shot and Fuji Broad in beneath a minute. The outcomes I obtained utilizing this methodology had been good, nonetheless I seen a black bar on the highest of the pictures. That is from the movie not being lined up precisely with the publicity space. Though this methodology works, if I continued to do that, seemingly the rear hinge on the rear door of the Massive Shot would break from the stress of the bigger Instax pack pushing on it. Additionally, I couldn’t treatment the black bar brought on by the Instax movie not being completely lined up with the publicity space.

Constructing the Movie Mount

Due to these points listed beforehand, I believed capturing a single piece of Instax movie as a substitute of inserting your entire pack of Instax into the Massive Shot would work a lot better. Nevertheless, if a single piece of Instax movie is positioned within the publicity space, it’s sure to maneuver and fall misplaced, as there may be nothing holding it. What’s wanted is a movie holder, so let’s make one.

Instruments and Provides

  • Printed Movie Holder
  • Chipboard/Skinny
  • Scissors/Exacto Knife
  • Glue/Glue Stick
  • (Optionally available) Black Everlasting Marker

The movie holder is slightly easy, and it may be created from quite a lot of supplies. I used black chipboard that’s roughly 1/16” (1.5mm) thick however any skinny cardboard with the same thickness will do (assume cereal field). The template supplied may be printed on commonplace 8.5 x 11 paper, pasted/connected to the cardboard, then the items minimize out and glued accordingly. When printing out the template, make certain to print with no margins, so the size are correct. The black everlasting marker can be utilized to paint the cardboard/movie holder black so it absorbs gentle, not essential however it might enhance outcomes.

Utilizing the Movie Holder

So, we’ve made our movie holder, now to make use of it! Forgive me to those that thought this may be so simple as loading, capturing and voila, a pleasant prompt photograph. The method is far more of, properly, a course of and sadly requires just a few extra steps than the earlier methodology however could be very comparable, so apologies for the restatements. Like earlier than, the Massive Shot, Fuji Broad, Instax, and movie holder is introduced right into a darkroom or a darkroom bag. If utilizing a brand new pack of Instax, it’s faraway from its protecting baggie, the sheet of plastic in entrance of the primary slide of movie is then eliminated and a slide of movie is then withdrawn. Though difficult, withdrawing the movie by gently urgent on it with each thumbs and sliding it up and out of the slot on the high appears to be the perfect methodology (make certain your arms are clear!). The piece of movie is then positioned within the movie holder, ensuring the publicity is dealing with out.

The holder is then positioned into the Massive Shot after which closed. The pack of Instax may be loaded within the Fuji Broad for secure protecting, as to not expose the movie. As soon as closed and faraway from the darkroom/darkroom bag the Massive Shot is able to take a photograph. After the photograph is taken, the Massive Shot is introduced again into the darkroom/darkroom bag to take away the movie holder. The movie is then faraway from the movie holder and slid again into the unique pack of Instax, ensuring the chem pack is dealing with up. The Instax can now be loaded into any Fuji Broad prompt digital camera. As soon as the Fuji Broad is loaded it may be faraway from the darkroom/darkroom bag, the lens coated, after which a photograph is taken. Phew! As I stated quite a lot of repetition and lots of a step. Nevertheless, the included pictures ought to hopefully illustrate this higher than my phrase salad can.

Ideas For Capturing

The usage of a devoted gentle meter or meter app is useful when capturing with the Massive Shot, though you don’t have a lot management. As acknowledged beforehand, Instax is 800 iso, the digital camera’s shutter velocity is a set 1/52 second, and the aperture is just adjustable to f56, f36 or f24. When capturing indoors, a flash is sort of at all times essential. Daylight pictures with no flash are definitely attainable, and I’ve included some under. Talking of flash, for the reason that Acmelite is way bigger than a Magicube, I needed to adhere it to the digital camera utilizing gaffers’ tape, not elegant, however very useful.

Finale (lastly…)

I’ve included some pictures taken utilizing each “methods” described. Though a bit concerned, when you’ve bought the grasp of it, the method isn’t too dangerous, and the outcomes are fairly distinctive, particularly for immediate images. I’m positive this course of may be utilized to different cameras that use Sort 100, though I haven’t tried it on something aside from the Massive Shot. Hopefully this encourages some on the market to experiment with these strategies and get some fascinating pictures on a Massive Shot or different “out of date” cameras.

Utilizing Movie Holder and Acme-Lite 138 (No Black Bars)

No Movie Holder and Magicubes (Seen Black Bars)

Daylight Shot and No Movie Holder (Semi-Seen Black Bars)

In regards to the Writer

Nicholas Morganti is a panorama, architectural, portrait, and product photographer primarily based in Buffalo, NY. You’ll find extra of his work on his website and comply with him on Instagram. This text was additionally revealed here and shared with permission.