If you read my last post you’ll know that I’d had a problem with my Yashica. Since I got it a few weeks ago, I’d used it almost exclusively and been delighted with the results. However, the last roll had delivered 11 shots of the 12 slightly out of focus (with only my TLR selfie in focus). This was frustrating as the pictures were of our family and taken at my daughter’s first birthday party, and event that couldn’t be re-shot.
Added to the disappointment of the results was the worry that the Yashica was broken in some way. I spent some time measuring the focus distances with a plan to recalibrate if necessary, but they all measured up OK. So I checked the viewing lens was secure and that the mirror was where it should be and all looked OK. There was nothing else for it but to shoot another roll and see what happened.
We move house next weekend. After eight happy years here, it’s going to be a wrench to leave. The good news is that the new house is beautiful, and located right next to a wildlife reserve where I imagine my daughter, my camera and I will be spending a lot of time. Before we leave, I’ve been taking more pictures of the house and the village to remember it in the future.
As we needed to tidy the garden before we go, I carried the Yashica with me and burnt through a roll of aging Ilford FP4+. I tried to keep the depth of field narrow, but vary the focus point to try out the camera. I also used a Свердловск-4 meter that I wanted to test – I’d changed the batteries for a stack of LR44s, rather than the chunky AA battery pack. I figured that even if the exposure was off, I’d still get to see if the camera was focusing correctly.
I shot the roll in an hour, processing and drying during the evening. My impatience got the better of me and I tried examining the film as it hung drying, using a magnifying glass, but it was no use, I couldn’t tell…
As I scanned the first frame, I was delighted to see sharp edges – the Yashica lived! While it may be a set of very dull pictures of scruffy garden sheds, I’m happy with them for other reasons.
I’m still not sure what caused the problem with the previous film. I guess it must have been operator error, or perhaps a problem with the pressure plate not keeping the film at the correct distance from the lens. Whatever the reason, I’m delighted that the Yash is back and ready for the rest of the project…
Yashica-Mat 124G, Ilford FP4+, Ilfotec HC at 1:31 for 8:00 minutes. Scanned on a V500 at 2400dpi.
My 52 rolls so far: