Thursday, April 06, 2017

I Got a Sprocket Rocket in My Pocket

Back in February, I purchased a Lomography Sprocket Rocket from my long-time Flickr and IRL friend, Trish.  I don't know why I had not bought one earlier, as they came out in 2012-- but I suppose they looked too much like one of those really cheap, shitty 127 cameras from the 1940s.  However, the similarity ends there.   The Sprocket Rocket takes 35mm and has a frame size of 24x72mm, and if you remove the mask, it also exposes the sprocket area (hence the name).  It's actually a sizable camera, with an all-plastic body and large front housing which contains the 30 mm f/10.8 lens.  The shutter is B and I, and the camera has two focus settings - 0.6-1 meter, and 1 meter to infinity.  The sunny setting is f/16, and cloudy-flash is f/11 (or close to it). There is a tripod socket on the bottom, so those bulb exposures will be a little easier.

My camera was missing the mask that covers the sprocket area, but it makes no difference, as I scan only the 24mm width, anyways.  In use, the camera is quite simple.  When advancing the film, wait for the white dot to show up in a window next to the frame counter.  When you see it, you have advanced the film to the next 24x72mm frame.  To rewind, you simply wind the film back into the cassette - there is no button to release for rewind.  The back snaps off and on fairly securely, but I also use some black electrical tape to make sure there are no accidental openings.

I shot one roll of color, which I have yet to develop, and just developed a roll of b&w Eastman 5222 film that I shot in Dexter and Chelsea, MI.  Some scans are below.  Overall, I am pleased with the results  which are far better than I expected.  The camera fills a niche which is generally an expensive one -- a true panorama 35mm camera. The 24x72mm frame is pretty well exposed, from corner to corner. There is some distortion, but it's part of the Lomography realm.

I guess my original reaction to the camera as a cheaply-built and overpriced Lomography product was wrong.  I don't know of any camera that does what this one does at this size and price.  It's a lot of fun, and I look forward to taking it on a bunch of trips this year.

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