Thursday, February 23, 2012

Rebuilding a Kodak Brownie No.2 F

Kodak Brownies are the Grand Daddies of point and shoot cameras. They've been around for more than 100 years, they were made in the millions, plenty of them still around and they are cheap. They are also very easy to use. A set focus, shutter speed of 1/50, bulb mode, 3 aperture settings of f22, f16 and f11, that's it.
"1924-30 Kodak Brownie No.2F as found today."
Most of the Brownies I've come across were made for 116 or 620 film. 116 is not available anymore and 620 is a pain to respool from available 120. Today I came across this sad puppy for $5. It was missing its front face plate but it loads on 120 film, I had to get it. It is a No.2 F model built in Toronto Canada between 1924 and 1930.

Down to its bare bones. 4 tiny nails hold this piece of wood on the aluminum body.
The important stuff on the camera is all there. The front face plate is more of a cosmetic element that can easily be fabricated. I started by taking the camera apart in order to clean and lube the shutter but most importantly, clean the lens.

Shutter plates cleaned in between using folded paper sheet and light oil.
Taking this camera apart is a piece of cake. Everything is held down by nails that must carefully be pulled out and a few screws. The shutter was cleaned using some folded paper and lube in order to get between the plates without taking them apart. They are held by a rivet and I would be hard pressed to reproduce the proper pressure between those 2. I re-installed the spring and it was back to original speed.

The next big step is taking out the lens and cleaning it.

See you there.

Gerry :)

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