bolex cheat sheet

bolex cheat sheet
Bolex: 1. Understand the various uses and limita3ons of the Bolex. Make sure that this is the right camera for you. a. Spring wound motor and hand-­‐crank b. No baBeries and 25 seconds per shot (basic package) c. Addi3onal baBeries and motors op3onal d. Variable frame rates e. Lots of lens op3ons 2. Inventory of the Bolex Kit: a. 3 prime lenses b. 7 lens caps (2 per lens + body cap) c. rewind crank d. light meter (lumi-­‐sphere, lumi-­‐disc, lumi-­‐grid, and high-­‐slide) e. filter holder f. daylight spool g. camera body 3. Understand the Bolex Viewfinder System. a. Light travels through the lens, then through the prism where it splits to both your film stock and viewfinder. This is why your image appears dark in the viewfinder. A small percentage of light is redirected. b. The viewfinder has a shuBer to block light from “fogging” the film. When the shuBer is engaged you cannot see. This is for rewinding the film or blocking direct light. 4. Focus the Diopter a. Remove lens or body cap, if aBached b. Aim the camera at a bright light – you should see a fuzzy white square c. Loosen the diopter (counter clockwise) d. Adjust the focus of the eyepiece, by moving the diopter. e. The white square you see is actually a glass prism with a fine texture. When you see this texture (like fine grain sand) your eyepiece will be in focus. f. This is a VERY IMPORTANT step – otherwise your images will not be focused. The diopter adjustment is a custom sebng for each user. g. Tighten the diopter (clockwise) and make sure your diopter does not move. h. Double check that everything is s3ll in focus. 5. Wind the Camera a. Prac3ce gebng comfortable winding, holding, and shoo3ng the camera. b. Prepare for the abrupt stop of the crank for a full wind. c. One full wind will run approximately 25 seconds at 24fps. !1
d. Wind counterclockwise. e. If you accidently wind clockwise the crank will unscrew from the body. 6. Frame Rates a. 24fps is standard, real 3me. b. 64fps is slow mo3on and can DAMAGE the camera if film is not loaded. c. NEVER EVER shoot at 64fps without film. This will destroy the camera gears. d. 12fps is fast mo3on and good for loading film. e. Understand the basic rela3onship between frame rates and exposure. f. Operate front and side triggers for “single framing” and “run lock”. 7. Single Framing a. Push the side trigger forward for single frame shoo3ng. b. Set “I” (instant) or “ T” (3med or bulb). c. Remove lens or body cap to look at the shuBer as it releases for “ T” and “I” d. “I” is always 1/40th of a second. “ T” stays open as long as you hold it. 8. Open the Lid a. Open the lid and put it aside with the inner side facing up b. The 3 liBle feet that keep the lid on, also keep the camera light 3ght (very delicate). 9. Remove the Pressure Plate a. Unscrew the boBom black screw and pull out the silver pin. b. Clean and inspect the gate and film path (q-­‐3ps and alcohol). c. Prac3ce removing and replacing the pressure plate. 10. Engage the Loop Formers a. These give the film the correct shape before and ajer the pressure plate. b. Engage with the loop former switch, and disengage by pressing the buBon. 11. Mount the Daylight Spool a. Wind the camera and set the frame rate to 12 fps. b. Press the spool release lever to eject the empty take-­‐up spool c. Mount the full daylight spool to top spool shaj. d. Cut the first frame of the film with the blade inside the bolex. e. Make sure that sprocket holes are not cut or torn. f. Engage the loop formers and make sure the pressure plate is secure. g. Run the camera while feeding the film into the top sprocket wheel. h. Allow the film to run through the boBom sprocket wheel about 12 inches. i. Release the loop formers. !2
j. Con3nue to run the film about 3 feet -­‐ make sure the arched film loops stay intact. k. Feed the head of the film into the slit of the take up spool and manually wind the film un3l it is secured 3ght to the core of the daylight spool l. Make sure the film path follows the white arrows, illustra3ng proper threading. Both daylight spools will spin clockwise m. Replace the lid and lock 12. Prepare to Shoot a. Select a lens b. Test focus by measuring the back of the lens to the subject c. Or set focus to infinity and aim at a far away object (mountain or building) d. You may have to reset the diopter e. Set your aperture according the light meter – see below. 13. Rewind Crank – Special Effects a. DO NOT REWIND your film when you are finished. The lab will rewind for you. Use the REWIND feature to create mul3ple exposures or dissolves. b. Set your frame counter to ZERO “0” if you want to keep track of where you start. c. For a double exposure -­‐ shoot your first shot 1 stop darker than what your light meter suggests. (Or half the light for each exposure of a double exposure) d. Begin the rewind process by: i. Close the viewfinder shuBer AND the variable shuBer behind the lens. ii. Disengage the Motor lever from “MOT” to “0”. If this is too hard, try advancing one frame with single framing to free the gears. iii. Pull the side trigger all the way back to Run-­‐Lock iv. Set the fps to 64fps. (Remember to change back to your normal sebng later.) v. Place the rewind crank in the top crank shaj near the frame counter and rotate counter clockwise. vi. For slower more precise rewinding, place the crank in the lower crank shaj. vii.Rewind to zero (your marker from above) or however far you would like to rewind. viii.REVERSE STEPS ix. Set fps back to 24fps (or whatever you like) x. Disengage Run Lock (make sure you do this before the next step!) xi. Re-­‐engage the Motor Lever !3
xii.Dis-­‐engage the viewfinder shuBer AND the variable shuBer xiii.Shoot your second exposure 14. Variable ShuBer – Special Effects a. The variable shuBer is located behind the lens b. Pull the lever out and then down to engage it c. Half way down is 1 stop of light, all the way down is closed – black. d. The shuBer can be used as a manual fade. e. The shuBer can be used as cross-­‐dissolve in conjunc3on with REWIND f. The shuBer can also increase the shuBer speed for reducing blur for ac3on shots. g. When the variable shuBer is engaged to any degree, you will see a black arrow in the viewfinder as a warning. 15. Finish your reel a. Some3mes it is hard to tell if you have finished your roll of film b. 1 roll = about 4000 frames or 400 feet (both are hard to measure exactly) c. You can check the frame counter or the footage counter for a rough idea. d. When in doubt, shoot several seconds to allow your last shot to pass to the take-­‐up reel. e. On a quite shoot, you may hear the last of the film pass through the gate and the motor change pitch. f. Have some paper tape ready, or save the seal from your daylight spool box. g. Find some shade or low light – indoor is best. Then open the door. h. Eject the boBom take-­‐up with the eject lever and tape down your film and place it immediately in a light 3ght box. i. Leave the top, empty daylight spool for the next person. !4
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