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Bell & Howell Filmo Sportster Dual 8mm Camera 1930s

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    Posted 11 years ago

    (36 items)

    This windup camera shoots dual run 8mm, which is the same-sized film stock as 16mm with perforations of 8mm. Only half of the film is exposed at a time, then you would flip the reels and expose the other half. When processed, the film is cut in half and developed.
    The included removable lens is a Bell & Howell 0.5" f 1.9
    It's a pretty heavy metal design with a stand and tripod thread on the bottom.

    The viewfinder in the right-most pic has a frame guide which can be flipped in or out of view. The two knobs right below the viewfinder can be squeezed together to release the lens. Below that is the run switch: up for single frame, down for continuous.

    Another interesting piece about this camera is the twisting chart on the left side which tells the user what the best f-stop is given different scenarios: frames per second, film speed, time of day, and subject (clouds/sea/snow, open landscapes, average subjects, close-ups/buildings, deep woods/ravines)

    On the right side of the camera is the hand crank, a film speed setting, and reel timer. The film speed setting can be changed while filming for a speed ramp. The reel timer can be manually set, it runs from S to F with 0-25 in between those.

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    1. john c., 11 years ago
      I have one of these cameras. What is it worth? It appears to be in pretty good condition.
    2. JDimmock, 11 years ago
      I would say about $10-15 depending on quality.
    3. john, 11 years ago
      I would have tought it would be worth more. Cameras don't seem to hold much value. I have an old agfa camera and an argas camera too. Both are older than I am and work. That is kind of disappointing. Thank you for your help. I guess I will just hang on to them.
    4. JDimmock, 11 years ago
      I understand completely. When I first saw this on the shelf, I thought it must have been at least north of $20 if for no other reason that it works and has a really heavy build for its size...
      I think there are some harder to find cameras that are worth more. Do you have pictures of your other cameras?
    5. Chuck, 10 years ago
      I was wondering if you had any advice on whether I should purchase a Bell & Howell FILMO Sportster Double Run Eight. I know there are plenty of these sturdy cameras on the internet however this one has a Morton Telephoto lens attached to it that appears to separate it from the others I’ve seen. Do you know anything about this lens?

      Chuck Snyder, Lake Orion Michigan.
    6. JDimmock, 10 years ago
      I've never used this camera, I only have experience shooting Super-8 and 16mm.
      The lens is pretty fast, which is nice since it lets you use a higher quality stock without needing additional lighting. Another plus would be that this camera does not have a built-in lens so you could upgrade them later if you wanted without springing for a new camera.
      All that being said, I think you may have to special order 8mm (or dual-8 for that matter) film. I would personally go with Super-8, it's more readily available from Kodak and the cartridge makes it easy to switch out film quickly. It also is pretty cheap.
      What are you looking to use the camera for? I personally would love to film my kids' (when I have them) home movies on film rather than only digitally.
    7. Brian, 10 years ago
      Hey, I just inherited this camera from my grandfather, it works perectly, but I have no idea how to open it. Can you help?
    8. Ken Carr, 10 years ago
      This is the same camera my dad used when we were kids. I remember him having to open it up and turning the spool over for the second half of the reel as so well described above. Regarding film quality, please check out a YouTube video of me when I was 12 years old. The link is:
      The video was taken with the Filmo. Also, I will have a frame capture and some short discussion of it in my latest blog post due to go up today. The link for the blog is http://www.kb1awv .
      I presently have two of these cameras and can't find either one. We just moved to this new home 6 months ago and I still feel like 10% of my life is misplaced!
    9. surveyor, 10 years ago
      I have basically the same camera,but mine is called a filmo companion double run eight & I have the origanal book for it if one of you need a copy.

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