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Thursday, July 06, 2017

Bantam punches above its weight

I rolled up a strip of 35mm color film in some trimmed 120 backing paper and shot it in my Kodak Bantam RF.  This is only the second roll I have put through the little 828 rangefinder.  I continue to be impressed by the quality the Ektanon lens is able to deliver.
    The Bantam RF, produced between 1953 and 1957, was second only to the Bantam Special in features and design.  Some simpler 828 models stayed in production in the UK until 1963.  Kodak, however, continued to market 828 film for two more decades.  That is a level of customer support and continuity which we are not likely to see again.






Negotiating Central Ave., Albuquerque's main East-West corridor, has become quite a challenge due to solid walls of traffic barriers required by the construction of a new rapid transit system.  The year-long project was initiated by Mayor Berry without consulting the electorate.  It could turn out to be a good thing for the city in the long run, of course, but appreciation of the Mayor's legacy may be delegated to some future generation.  Meanwhile, the Chamber of Commerce has being doing what it can to be supportive, presenting the Mayor recently with a Public Safety award -- this in a City with soaring rate of drug addiction and crime, and the Number One rating in the country for auto theft.  The citizens are only mildly amused.

6 comments:

James Harr said...

That does seem like a bit of a hidden gem of a camera. How is it to operate? That recessed winding knob reminds me a little of the Zorki-4 and I never enjoyed winding the film on that camera. This one could be redeemed though with that nice stack of glass on the front. It seems tack sharp in the center. Maybe it softens a little in the corners?? Anyway, nice shots here, and way to go finding a silver lining to road work. You got some good photos out of it!

JR Smith said...

Nice shots from this camera!

Jim Grey said...

Great color and sharpness. If you told me you shot these with your Spotmatic I wouldn't have thought twice about it.

jon campo said...

Very nice Mike. That is some pretty vivid color on my monitor.

Mike said...

The Bantam RF does have an impressive list of features including a good rangefinder that allows focusing down to 2.5 feet. The advance knob does extend upward for winding. The window on the back is used only to position the first frame. After that, a little toothed wheel in the film path controls the frame spacing. I shot the whole roll on this occasion at f16 or f22; I'll try to remember the next time to try some shots at wider apertures.

Mike said...

I should add that I got the Bantam RF for ten bucks at ebay, and I often see them going for about that price.