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Beginners Questions about Super 8

Raymond DeSalvo

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Hey everyone!


I've had my late grandfathers old super 8 camera and and projector sitting on my shelf for a few years now and I'm determined to make this summer the summer I actually get some use out of it. That being said I'm totally new to all of this and I'm hoping to pick some of your brains about old super 8 cameras


What I have is a Bell and Howell autoload 308. By no means anything professional, but I'm hoping to breath some new life into it. I've put batteries in it and it seems to run just fine, however my biggest question is about the "electric eye" or automatic exposure feature this camera has. I put a new battery in that as well and it doesn't seem to be working. The original user manual says that if the battery is dead a red flag will be displayed in the viewfinder, which it does. But even after I changed the battery it still displays the overexposure flag and doesn't change at all. So my guess now is that because the film cartridge itself will tell the camera what the film speed is the automatic exposure won't work until I have film cartridge in there...


So how does the cartridges work, and how do they tell the camera the film speed?

I'd really like to make sure my camera is fully functional before I invest in the film and processing so if anyone has any tips for testing and trouble shooting old cameras I'd greatly appreciate the advice!




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