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07-07-2009, 06:58 PM   #1
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How does the camera "know" where the first frame starts?

I've been trying to figure this out, without much success. Google didn't turn out anything, either.

So, maybe someone here knows? When I load film, I align a small red triangle with "start here" line, then wind the camera (Bronica ETR-Si) till it shows "1" on the insert. If it's just some certain distance from "start here" to beginning of the film, and the back just lets me wind that certain distance, then I'm disappointed and the question is off

If it's not, then it gets interesting! Say, if I misalign "start here" and the triangle, what'll happen? Will the first frame be cut in the middle, or will it be okay? And really, how does the camera know it's time to stop letting me wind?

Bo.

07-07-2009, 07:26 PM   #2
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The roller just past the focal plane window (that's where the shutter is in an SLR) counts a certain number of turns and when it hits it's set number it is on frame one. I don't know about other cameras, but on the Pentax 6x7 there is a specific warning in the owners manual about not turning that roller backwards because it can damage the mechanism.
If you go too far past the mark, the last frame may well run off the film because you have allowed the camera to misload.

It's a good idea to look at your film and see how far past the tape the 1st exposure is and adjust the lead in appropriately. With my 6x7 I like to move the mark on the film slightly past the mark on the camera. before closing the back.
07-07-2009, 07:53 PM   #3
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Hm, so it is a certain distance after all... No magic, plain simple. I'll see if images are aligned well after they get developed
07-07-2009, 08:15 PM   #4
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With 67II when you are advancing the film to the start line you can use the multiple exposure button to stop the advance at exactly the start line. I.E. commonly if you use a "full throw" of the advance lever, the film will advance past the start line. Using the multi. exp. button stops the advance of the film yet allows you to finish the full throw of the advance lever to set it for the first "real" exposure. When you close the back, you'll advance the lever a couple times until it stops and the film should be in perfect registration for the full frame count which is (I believe) 10 on 120 film and 21 on 220 film.

The multi. exp. button is right beside the shutter release and is pretty easy to hold down once the film is exactly at the start line.

07-07-2009, 08:39 PM   #5
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Huh? What's multiple exposure have to do with this?
On Bronica there's a multiple exposure lever, but it just makes the connecting gear between camera and back recess, thus effectively disconnecting body and insert, and film does not advance when rotating the crank.
07-07-2009, 08:51 PM   #6
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Yes, Pentax 67II multi. exp. button does the same thing. You see, as you advance the film to the start line, usually, it will advance past the start line if you just keep pushing the advance lever. Instead, as you see the start line coming up you advance the lever very slowly and as the start line hits the exact start mark on the camera you push the multi exp button/lever which disengages the advance lever from the film. So the film stops advancing at the spot you pushed the multi exp. button (or lever as in your Bronica) but you can still finish the throw of the advance lever--while the film stays put right at the start line. This has absolutely nothing to do with shooting multi exposures. It has to do with disengaging the advance lever allowing you to fully reset the advance lever without moving the film beyond the start line. On the 67II you have to hold the multi exp. button down until you finish the full throw on the advance lever, then close the back and advance until it stops. You are then ready to shoot with perfect or nearly perfect film placement.

Sorry to confuse you. This isn't a multi. exposure tip, but a tip to allow perfect registration of the film to the start line in the camera. Honestly I've never used the multi exp. function of my 67II's but I use the multi exp. button every single time I load a fresh roll of film.
07-07-2009, 08:56 PM   #7
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If your Bronica allows you to stop cranking to advance the film at whatever point you choose, then this tip is irrelevant for your gear. Just crank until the start line matches the start mark on your insert. With the Pentax, you must use the full throw of the advance lever to reset it for the next advance. Since that full throw will run the film past the start line much of the time, using multi. exp. to disengage the advance lever is just a quick and easy way to stop the film advance at exactly the start line on both film and camera.

Hope this isn't causing more confusion...
07-07-2009, 10:25 PM   #8
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Ooooooohhhh, I get it
It's different on Bronica: you load film and match the start mark and arrow away from the body - the insert has a small film wind crank, and after you insert leader into take-up spool, you just wind it till start mark and arrow match. Then, you put the insert into back, which is attached to the body, and close the cover (after insert is closed in the back, I have no idea what's happening inside - hence the question ). Then, you wind the main crank until indicator on top shows "1".

07-08-2009, 06:18 AM   #9
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Rolleiflex had some magic, copied by a few others - it sensed the increased thickness when the film started and used this to set frame #1.

Most TLRs with auto frame use the "Start here" method - the Yashica Mat and Diacord and Rolleicord are a few examples of this.
07-08-2009, 08:23 AM   #10
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Thanks so much for this thread. Really tired of losing my best shot during development. Also tired of getting 9 shots per roll.

Will try the multi-exposure button when loading now.

'njoy,
Mark
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