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Saturday, 17 February 2018

What a softie

A 'softie', in case you don't know, is an accessory that screws into a standard cable release socket, on cameras that have them, to increase the height of the shutter release and create a wide button to press. They allow the finger to be wrapped over the top of the release so the release can be squeezed, like a trigger on a gun, rather than pressed with the tip of the finger. The idea is, just like a gun, by squeezing the release 'softly' you are less likely to cause movement of the camera.

While experimenting with the grips I fitted to the 139 I noticed I was causing a small movement of the camera each time I pressed the release. I've used softies before on other cameras and thought it might help. But, of course, there's no cable release socket on the 139 release. My answer? I cut a small round piece of foam and stuck it to the release button. I used some 3mm thick, closed cell, foam and cut it with a 10mm punch. It fits well and gives exactly the same effect as other softies. And, most importantly, it stopped the small movement that I was previously introducing when pressing the shutter release.

Contax 139 softie

Update: I've since changed the foam softie for a circular, domed, rubber foot. The harder rubber works better than the foam and the domed shape is better for wrapping your finger over it. You can see it on this picture.

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Getting a Grip II

So, initial trials suggest the front grip is useful as well as the rear one but I found my fingers were either on top of the self timer switch or squeezed between it and the grip. Simple answer - remove the self timer. It's not something I ever use anyway. And, strangely, I quite like the look of the camera with the switch removed.

Contax 139 with grip. No self timer.

Friday, 9 February 2018

Getting a Grip

I've toyed with the idea of adding a grip to a 139 for a while and have finally got around to trying something. This is a 139 I've recently renovated to add to my own personal Contax collection. The grips are cut down from the covers from a Centon 100. The rear one I'm sure is an improvement, the front one I'm not so sure about. Time will tell.