Kodak Brownie Flash II (UK version)


I found a Kodak Brownie in a junk shop. Cheap it was not but the shutter worked so I took it home.I cleaned it, repaired it, did a film hack, ripped some film, did another test and NOT a brilliant camera. People love this camera.

Credits: woosang

Went to get the mail and we needed toilet paper. So I walked down from the post office to the supermarket, a passing an antique store. I always walk past this store. I have never gone in. Ever. In all the years I have lived here, never have I darkened their doors. Today, I stopped dead. I had this strong feeling that I should go in, just this once.

I opened the squeaky door (yes, creaks) and ventured into a room filled with china cabinets. Oh a bull in a china shop. I kept my hands close to my body for fear of breaking something. Dolls looked down from their dusty shelves, probably wondering why a ragged woman, in tracksuit pants and unkempt hair, was daring to enter their boutique.

The well-dressed lady behind the counter, having finished serving the handsome fireman (yes, all true! looked over at me and smiled the warmest smile I have seen in a time. She chatted to me and talked about the new store coming soon, the books in the back with the fur coats. Fur coats were 50% off… Ooo… No, no not here for coats…

I excused myself as I spied a moldy leather case. Square, thick leather.. Hmmm…

Gingerly opening it, I saw…

Credits: woosang

Squee!!! It’s cute and in nice condition. I pulled it out of the bag, taking it to the lady’s counter. I turned it over in my hands talking about it to the lady. She pretended to be interested. She did ask me questions.
I asked if I could test it or was it broken. She had no idea so allowed me to play with it. The shutter worked, the glass was all intact, and the only flaws were some dirt. For a 1958 box camera, it was in good condition.

I gave in and handed over the last of my cash for the fortnight. Sigh.

The friendly lady wrapped it lovingly in a bag and we chatted some more. Returning to the car, I suddenly remembered the toilet paper. DAMN!

Returning home, I opened my prize. I was aware that I had no 620 film, but could I squeeze 120 inside?

(Takes the Lomography B&W 100 ASA)

Hmm. The 620 is slightly narrower and a lot thinner. Getting a cheap 120 mm film, I squeezed it onto the roll. It was a tight fit. Now I get to see what this can do. Either way it’s cute and will be a lovely bookcase piece. But I managed to hack my spools so now they fit! :-) YAYA No need to buy 620 at all or re-spool

The Flash II was introduced in the UK market in July 1957 (My model) and there was an Australian version in 1958. The cameras were discontinued in 1960. Only 3 years!!! This camera has a Kodet f/14 with close-up lens. This is very cool!!!

Credits: woosang

Well my films arrived yesterday and I eagerly opened them. I was reminded of how much I Adore Fuji Provia It really is a superb film. I was happy with my Lomography B&W which went through the wringer as the first test film and all in all this camera is great!

Test Roll 1 Lomography.com B&W

As described in an earlier post below, this film got jammed, stretched, torn, and re-rolled twice and STILL provided some acceptable photos.

Credits: woosang
Credits: woosang
Credits: woosang

Test Roll 2 Testing spool hack Fujichrome Provia expired

Credits: woosang
Credits: woosang
Credits: woosang

Test Roll 3 Kodak Tri-X 1960’s expired

This film held up considering its vast age. It doesn’t show the typical decay that a film even a few years younger will show.

Credits: woosang
Credits: woosang
Credits: woosang

So there you are a lovely little camera that takes cool pics (OK, soft around the edges but it is 53 years old).

written by woosang on 2011-06-01 #gear #review #brownie #box-camera #lomography #kodak #1950-s #film-camera #user-review


  1. vici
    vici ·

    120 rolls fit easily into my Hawkeye Brownie (I don't know what year it is). You have really inspired me to put a roll of Provia into that camera! You got great results.

  2. glenn
    glenn ·


  3. bulletofmine
    bulletofmine ·

    nice review! I like the way you told it to us. Just like i'm reading a novel

  4. hello-alexander
    hello-alexander ·

    Cool results! The camera and it's bag are so pretty!

  5. crs1990
    crs1990 ·

    Would it be cheeky if I asked how much you managed to pick this lovely thing up for?

  6. woosang
    woosang ·

    @crs1990 well this one was $65 but I have 10 now and I pay $15-25 for a mint condition one. Depends on the rarity. Oh course when you start something you usually pay more Live and learn

  7. woosang
    woosang ·

    @vici @glenn @bulletofmine @hello-alexander thank you all

  8. johnheams
    johnheams ·

    How difficult was it to get this to take 120 film? im very intrigued by it.

  9. woosang
    woosang ·

    @johnheams Not hard at all. YOu MUST use a 620 for take up or it will get jammed

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