After a short discussion with Sylvain [the webmaster] who agrees 300% with me, I will show you my new crazy home-made challenge:
My project consists in creating a 24x36mm reflex all by myself – no more, no less. I have had this project in mind for the past 25 years, but I didn’t master the technique nor did I have the knowledge necessary to complete it until now (I’m almost 42).
- The aim is not to use pieces scrapped from existing cameras, except for the shutter curtain fabric, ball bearings and screws; I have already found a solution for manufacturing the mirror, the focusing screen and even the prism.
- This camera will not be a copycat of an existing camera, but a new design that allows me to use my workshop equipped with model-making machine tools. Of course, the design will be drawing from existing solutions, such as the focal-plane shutter of the Leica II.
- I didn’t find anything like this on the web, even on Anglo-Saxon websites, and they do like DIY a lot, I will therefore be facing the teething problems.
- This project does have some difficulties
, this wouldn’t otherwise be interesting. The most hindering issues for me will be the light proofness and the focal-plane shutter. As regard the light proofness, I will be bypassing this issue by drawing from the bottom-loading design of Leica, Zenit 1, Zorki… The only difference is that the bottom plate and the casing will be removable in a single piece. As regards the shutter, I scrutinized a Zenit 1 as well as a Zenit E from every possible angle to understand the operation, I have had some issues understanding it, but it now clear to me.
- Lastly, my camera will have to be reasonably sized in comparison with existing cameras. The technical level will be more or less on par with the one of the 1950s, I don’t think I’ll be able to implement an instant-return mirror, for example, but if one is too greedy from the start, the project fails and end up unfinished in a box.
Of course, I will be listening to you and taking your comments & criticisms into account.