Unlike the LC-A+, the old LC-A does not have a window which shows which film is in the camera (if any). Here's a quick and easy fix.
For those of you out there shooting with an LC-A, perhaps you’ve had the experience of “shooting a roll of film” only to discover that there was no film in it at all. Or perhaps you put a roll of film in your camera six months ago, but you didn’t finish the roll (maybe you’ve bought 5 other Lomography cameras during that time and have forgotten about your old buddy), and now you have no idea what’s in there (if anything!).
Here’s what I do with my LC-As. As soon as I put a roll of film in there, I pull out my roll of 2" wide, blue painter’s tape, write whatever info I want on it (I usually put the brand of the film, if it’s slide or color neg or black and white, the ISO, and the number of exposures on the roll), then I put it on the back of the camera. When I’m done shooting the roll, I pull the tape off and throw it away. I always know that an LC-A without blue tape on it is an empty LC-A just waiting to fill up again!
Painter’s tape is great for this because it is not nearly as sticky as masking tape. Painter’s tape is designed to stick on surfaces but also to pull off of surfaces without leaving any residue. I got a 2" (approx. 51 mm) wide roll, 60 yards long (approx. 55 m) for US$12. This roll should last me 720 rolls of film!
Bonus Tip! A quick and easy way to discover (only!) if there is film in your LC-A is to click the shutter and then “advance the film.” If the rewind lever does not spin, there’s no film in the camera. Of course, this won’t tell you what kind of film is in there, but at least you’ll know if the LC-A is loaded!