It’s always nice when you connect with good people. People have commented in the past on my old cameras I’m always lugging around on tours but this is the first time I’ve had someone that thought of me and my hobby enough to send me one of their old cameras as a parting gift.
Of course I’m really hoping to get a Leica or a Hasselblad from a passenger but this is a step in the right direction!
This was a group of four wonderful ladies that went on a High Country tour way up into national forest. They happened to be from my home state of Ohio and it’s always nice when you have that in common; building connections with passengers is part of what makes a great tour.
I intended this post to be a review of the camera after I’d put a roll of film through it, unfortunately as I was going to do that I started having problems winding the camera and the shutter seems to be stuck half-open.
And I’ve been having problems with one of my F2s having light leaks…
For someone in rural Ohio in 1985, whatever the Fujica STX-1N cost brand-new must have seemed like a lot; these days it’s dirt-cheap if ebay prices are any indication. It’s not worth it to repair and the extra zoom lenses that came with the camera are probably worthless as well. I probably would have only shot a roll of film and then given it away, but it makes me sad that I can’t do even that to honor the generosity of my passenger. I still consider it one of the nicest tips and nicest gestures I’ve ever received.
I’ve read a bit about people’s experiences taking film into/out of the UK, though usually most people are going through London. My flight in the beginning of April was Denver to Detroit to Amsterdam to Cardiff (back was the same except switch Salt Lake City for Detroit). I’m not a stranger to taking film on an airplane, but this was my first-ever trip overseas. As an old hand, I’ll echo what others have said before, in that you want to:
-show up early, when there are less people and you’re not in a hurry
-always be polite
-if possible, try to find a line being looked over by someone older, in their 40s or 50s: they’ll actually remember film
-have your film ready to hand over and don’t take up extra time getting it out (I keep mine in a separate ziploc bag in the outside pocket of my carry-on)
Now I’ve heard that the security in the London airports are rude and will never accommodate requests for film to be hand-checked. Thankfully, it was not a problem to or from Cardiff at all…the Delta terminal in Amsterdam, that’s another story, but that was mostly due to my transatlantic flight being delayed and terribly long lines waiting to get to my plane. When flying out of Cardiff, I asked them to be hand-checked and they did seem slightly put out by it, but did acquiesce. There was the standard “the new scanners don’t damage film” spiel, but like I’ve read I just told them politely that I’m still unsure about that and that I preferred them to be hand-checked. They were under the impression that taking the film out of its plastic containers would do more damage than the x-ray scanner, so there is that to deal with, but ultimately it turned out fine.
While not having to go through customs in Amsterdam, I did have to when I reentered the US in Salt Lake City before catching my connecting flight, no problems with hand-checking the film there.