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Benjamin Stone

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I just purchased a Kodak Instamatic M6 from ebay. It arrived in excellent condition, but was not working (the seller did not say it WOULD work)

anyway I checked to make sure all the contacts were clean on the battery compartment, and the cartridge compartment looked decent...all in all it looked like it was in great shape. I opened up the auto exposure control battery part and there was only one battery in it and the battery was corroded a bit, so i removed it cleaned out the compartment and left the battery out. (I am going to buy the necessary two replacement batteries for the auto exposure control)

The trigger pushed in, but the motor did not sound as if it were running. i pushed it several times but to no avail. (i think i heard the motor run for a split second twice, but nothing else)

my friend looked onver the camera with me and we sprayed some contact cleaner on the regular battery contacts just to make sure. the trigger still did nothing. I held the camera up to my ear and heard a low sort of vibration, as if something completed a circuit inside the camera, but i did not push the trigger in...it was doing this by itself. I took the batteries out and it stopped.

I came here and saw a forum post of someone having a similar issue and the replies suggested that the trigger may be "stuck" on or defective, or that the drive shaft gear is not working...because its neoprene and probably has broken because the camera is so old.

FINALLY, after all that explanation my question is essentially what should I do now? I have a couple cartridges of film so i could pop one in and see if that works (but i dont see how that would change the trigger) or should i try and take it apart and clean the contact with the trigger, or is it the gear....or basically what are my options.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sadly, the camera is junk and should now only be a shelf-sitter. KODAK used neoprene type drive gears on the motor driveshaft of all their movie cameras (and some slide projectors) except for the very first early 1965+ M2 and M4 cameras. Since no parts are available, these can not be repaired. Even if parts were available, the cost to repair is cost-prohibitive. These are very basic cameras without any true exposure control on the film. My recommendation is to just buy a decent working Super 8mm camera off eBay or elsewhere and be able to shoot your film reliably. It doesn't have to be expensive, there are many available. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news here. Good luck!

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Always a bit bizarre how eager people are to get cameras at pocket money prices and then want to run $15 per minute film through these. But then this is the essence of Lomography too. Not start about Impossible film in Polaroid 600 cameras of $5 a piece either.

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Sadly, the camera is junk and should now only be a shelf-sitter.


Gee, I first read the end of the phrase the other way.


What did, by the way, the M mean? Micromotor maybe.

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