No. 201

Dr. Love's SX-70 CPR

Patrick Tobin, | Nov 15, 06:52 PM

The good doctor.

This week, Impossible USA’s Camera Resource Manager Frank Love provides some tips on how best to care for your beloved Polaroid SX-70…

For anyone with a folding SX-70, you know how beautiful they are, but some of you may have also found that they are delicate instruments, and you may have one that doesn’t work so well or consistently, and maybe it’s just sitting around and hasn’t worked at all recently. There’s a chance that if this camera hasn’t received any trauma, it may simply need a little ‘Love’ to get it going again.

I first want to state that if you don’t feel comfortable doing anything here, don’t, but if you follow these simple instructions you should have a good shot at getting your camera working again.

Try opening the camera and taking the door off, to do this you hold the camera in your right hand, open the film door, hold it up at a slight angle, and with your left index finger, press on the far hinge towards yourself a little and pull the door outward as you do. Then (refer to the first image) there’s a little thin metal piece that has a small black tip, this is a contact switch on the camera to let the camera know the door is closed. Often over time this can become overly straightened so that it barely makes contact with the door, or doesn’t at all, this results in the camera thinking the door is open and doesn’t close the circuit for the power. If you take something like a flathead screwdriver, or say a pen cap, you can press down on this piece slightly towards the bottom of the body to put a little bend in it. Don’t bend too much, just a little is needed. This will allow proper contact when the door is closed.

If you do this and still nothing, you can try opening the camera, but not to where it latches, and ‘pump’ the bellows. This rubs two other contacts together that do the same as the other switch, except telling the camera that it’s open so that it can operate. If you try these two things and put a battery pack with a good charge in the camera, your camera should work if it doesn’t have anything overly wrong with it. Your other recourses would be trying another pack or testing the voltage on the battery to make sure it’s close to 6V, if it’s below 5.75V it could be a low battery, otherwise the camera likely needs repairing if it is still not working right. I hope that at least some of you can get a camera working by trying these tips.

Keep your rollers clean,

-f

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