ABOUT OUR CAMERAS
There’s nothing wrong with autofocus 35mm SLRs, and we love a rangefinder on occasion too, and who doesn’t love Medium Format if they can afford it, but manual focus 35mm film SLR cameras are what we know and love.
So that’s what we do. Period. Nothing else.
When you’re looking at our cameras there’s a few things you should know:-
They All Work!
We’re not into selling cameras that sort of work – unless we have spelt it out VERY clearly to say otherwise, which will be very rare. So unless it says very clearly otherwise, all of the following apply to all of our cameras:-
1. The shutter fires and the film winds on;
2. If the camera has metering, the metering is working;
3. The door stays shut when it should (i.e. all of the time!) and opens when you try to open it;
4. The mirror gets out of the way when it should (i.e. whenever you fire the shutter!) and returns when it should;
So there’s no need to go looking for small print with the write up about the camera you like. If you see it and like it, you can buy it without any fuss or worrying.
If you get your camera and all of those don’t apply, just let us know within 14 days of purchase and we’ll sort out a return and a full refund, no problem.
…And So Do The Lenses!
We’re not into selling lenses that sort of work, or are full of fungus (as a lot of older lenses are). Again, unless we have spelt it out VERY clearly to say otherwise, which will be very rare, then all of the following apply to all of our lenses:-
1. The aperture rings clicks into place across the full range of f-stops;
2. The focus ring works without you having to make funny faces to get it to turn, and without it inadvertently ‘slipping’ when it shouldn’t;
3. The glass is free from anything that is going to adversely affect the images;
4. If it’s a zoom lens, then the zoom works across the full range without you needing to apply excess force, and without it slipping.
So there’s no need to go looking for small print with the write up about the lens you like either.
If you get your lens and all of those don’t apply, just let us know within 14 days of purchase and we’ll sort out a return and a full refund, no problem.
They All Come with Two Rolls of Film
The brand of film might change from time to time, but you’ll get one roll of black and white film, and one roll of colour film. Naturally they will both be in date, and they will be brands we use ourselves, so you don’t need to worry.
So with two rolls of film and a fully working camera and lens, you’ll know that when your parcel arrives, you can start shooting straight away!
Vintage Cameras Are Living Creatures
Well, maybe not literally, but what we mean is they are machines which require maintenance, servicing and, sometimes, repairs, if you want to keep them going forever. The fact you’re buying second-hand means they can’t come with any lengthy warranty, like a new digital SLR camera would – at ten, twenty or even thirty times the price!
The fact you’re buying something that is maybe 50 or 60 years old which still works tells you that the chances of something going wrong down the line is slim…..but it will happen on occasion unfortunately.
A lot of the time what appears to be a problem is easily fixable – you might have put the batteries in the wrong way up, or there could be a very simply mechanical issue that can be easily resolved. (See our troubleshooting guide for help with this sort of thing).
If you experience a problem outside of our 14 day returns period, please do get in touch with us. We can probably offer you some help on trying to identify and fix the issue, or try and refer you to somebody who can help. We genuinely want to hear from you if this happens, so please don’t be shy!
Obviously none of these cameras have just rolled off the production line, so they are all going to be in varying states of second hand condition.
However, we don’t sell anything that is battered. Even if you buy our lowest grade of condition – ‘average’ – you’re still getting a camera you’ll be perfectly proud to walk around with.
We always try and take good close ups of our cameras to give you the best description possible of their condition. So do take a good look at those. Other websites tend to avoid taking close ups, thinking they can get away with it, but we don’t think that’s the right way to do things.
To try and help you though, especially if you’re in a rush, we’ve come up with the following grading system:-
Excellent – This is as good as it is going to get for a vintage camera. If you hold one of these at arms’ length it could pass for brand new. Like any old camera though there might be tiny traces of dust in the viewfinder or lens, and the bottom base plate and some of the corners might show tiny imperfections, but it’s going to be as good as it gets for a used camera. Cameras with this excellent grading will be rare.
Very good – This is still, as the title suggests, a very good condition camera! The imperfections will be marginally more obvious than with an “excellent” camera, but they’ll still be well hidden and your camera will still look lovely. It might have some minor scratches or tarnishing on corners, or the bottom base plate, for instance.
Good – This will have more noticeable signs of wear, but again, it will still be a good looking camera. We will always try and give a description to tell you why we’ve only graded a camera as good. Quite often there will be just one minor thing on a camera that would otherwise meet our “very good” or “excellent” grading.
Average – Obvious signs of wear and tear. We’ll always tell you why we’ve graded a camera as average.