For the LC-A 120, paradoxically you’re better off avoiding the current Lomography-brand film. Why would I say this? What is the problem, and shouldn’t Lomography’s film be the perfect match for the LC-A 120?
I did some measurements and found that the winding mechanism of the LC-A is fixed, and based on the number of turns required at the take-up spool to move the film to the next position. This is (cough) a fundamental design flaw, as the number of turns depends on the thickness of the film/backing paper in use and there is nothing in the camera to adapt to it.
The problem with the Lomography film in its current (2015) form is that the backing paper is MUCH too thick. Before you even reach the first frame, the take-up spool diameter has increased so much that you overshoot the first position by half a frame. This is why people recommend lining up the START arrow to the left of the recommended position, so that the first frame will be reached at the correct point.
But unfortunately, that’s not enough to avoid problems. The take-up spool diameter is already too great by this point, so every time you advance to another frame it will move the film too far. You’ll see it on your developed negatives, and in the end you’ll reach the end of the roll with only 10 pictures taken.
If they had placed a roller against the edge of the film next to the exposure area, and measured the number of turns of that roller – there are in fact two such rollers already present, but they are not connected to anything – then the number of turns would not depend on film/paper thickness and would be reliable. Oh well, we live and learn.
What I also found, however, is that Fujifilm Provia 100F matches the predefined turning amounts of the LC-A exactly. You’ll get your full 12 frames, with perfect narrow gaps between each frame and no excessive winding on. I got similar results from other Fujifilm rolls, all of which share the same fine, thin backing paper. Clearly the LC-A 120 was calibrated with such film in mind, but the Lomography-brand film spoils the show with its thick backing paper.
Of course, I love the Lomography film – it just works perfectly. Sometimes I’ll just have to live with the lost frames. But most of the time, I’ll save it for my other 120-format cameras, and keep the rolls with thin backing paper for my LC-A 120.
written by poglad on 2015-09-05