Agfa Box Spezial and found film

Discussion in 'Classic Manual Cameras' started by henrik_lauridsen, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. Got another classic camera as a gift. This time, an old Agfa Box Spezial. Reasonably well in shape, considering the age (introduced in 1931). Plus, it came in the original leather case, and with a Danish manual. It must have been kept dry, as there was only a hint of mouldy smell, and the lens was clean. Inside was another nice bonus - a roll of exposed Ilford HP3.
    Camera and the exposed roll of HP3
    The camera is very simple to operate. Two shutter speeds (1/30 and bulb), 3 apertures (f/11, f/16 and f/22) and 3 focus distances (fern, nah & portrait). It has two waist level style viewfinders, so that you can do both portrait and landscape exposures. 8 exposures on one roll of 120 film.
  2. I could not find any development times for Ilford HP3, so after a suggestion on, I sent a question to Ilford. They responded within an hour, with a nice email, suggesting 12 minutes in stock D-76 (I had mentioned in my query, that I had Rodinal, D-76 and Xtol at my disposal).
    I have never been more careful developing a film, than with this one. On top of that, the film was very curly, and quite difficult to get on the reel. I finally managed to get it on, and got it developed.
    The first exposure on the roll, and the one that has been closest to the center of the takeup spool, was the one that looked best.
    To me, it looks like this early 50's couple are getting ready for their honeymoon, but I am just guessing. Considering that the film has been exposed for 50+ years before development, I think the result is rather amazing.
  3. Another one, this one could very well be from the Copenhagen Central train station. It is a bit out of focus, probably blurred from camera shake.
    I have shot a roll of Fomapan 100 with the camera recently, and I had the same blur on all but one of the shots.
  4. This is the second to last frame, and now it is evident that time has taken its toll on the film. But still, the photo is pretty clear. My dad told me the car in the background might be a pre-war Hillman.
  5. Last (outermost frame) - Fogging is massive, and there was a hole in the film, as well as the backing paper (which looked a bit burnt).
  6. Wow --- an amazing job recovering those images! It's a shame the original photographer and subjects didn't get a chance to see them. They are all nicely composed. The photo of the cycle-tourists (complete with sleeping bags) is very cool.
  7. Nice work! I keep hoping to come across some exposed film in a used camera, but I haven't yet.
  8. Very nice, remarkable results given the age - must be a special feeling getting a first glimpse at a time capsule like that! Thanks for posting these, really enjoyed them!
  9. Bravo.
    If these were honeymoon pictures, maybe not so great that the film was never processed.
  10. Charming couple, they were. There's something nice about the body language of the young people of that era...great recovery job, Henrik, thanks for posting.
  11. No doubt someone with a background in fashion history could date the clothes in the first frame. Most interesting
  12. Congratulations on rescuing something from the past, and then sharing it with us.
  13. Nice save, Henrik! Cute couple. Looks like a weekend trip from the size of the luggage.
  14. Awesome to see. Thanks, Henrik!
  15. Anyone with a background in fashion history would be off by 10-20 years on pictures taken of me, if those pictures were ever to be found. But at least my car is only 6 years old.
  16. My guess is that the two in the first picture are brother and sister, and that she is leaving home. She carries luggage for one person (the bag in her left hand looks purchased for the occasion). Note that the brother's jacket does not fit well, probably his dad's. The gate in front of the house is very distinctive. It may be possible to identify the house and perhaps the people in the photographs.
  17. I will shoot a roll of 120 and burry it in a air tight stainless steel box siliconed shut. Maybe 50 years from now someone will open it and if they are a photography savy person they will maybe develop the roll. Love those old pictures.
  18. Thank you all for your comments. I have shown the pictures to my parents, and they say the clothes and bicycles looks early 50s to them. Perhaps the owner of the camera switched to a more modern camera, a 35mm SLR perhaps? That could be a reason why he forgot all about that last roll.
    I am not sure about the brother/sister theory - they are holding hands, which points more to a couple than siblings.
  19. Hej Henrik - I think that both you and your parents are a little bit wrong- I would say late 50'ties or perhaps even early 60'ties.
    One thing is his shirt - in the early 50'ties he would have worn a white shirt and a tie.
    Another thing is the bag the young woman is carrying - I can remember my mother having such a one in the early 60'ties. The man is carrying the suitcase.
    And the house in the background is typical for houses build during the 50'ties.
    Maybee I should mention that come from Denmark too - Copenhagen.
    At the picture from the Central Station in Copenhagen both women are wearing stilleto heels and that would have been unthinkalble in the early 50'ties.
    At Fliickr you have got one more picture from the same film - the one with two young girls standing next to each other. The tallest of them is clearly the one from the first picture with the bag. The other with the glasses is wearing a dress that says 1960 - that was the kind of dress the girls were wearing when the were going to the danceschool lesson. It could be her dress for the "konfirmation" - as a Dane you know what I'm talking about.
    The picture of the girls on bicycles - perhaps going on a camping trip? - it looks like the handlebars and the stemposts can be detached - the toptube is straight and the wheels are 26". In the early 50'ties it would have been 28" wheels - think about a socalled GrandMa bike hear in Denmark where the toptube is curved.
    My conclusion is that it is early 60'ties. That is 50 years ago, but both the two young girls on bikes and the young couple aren't that old on these pictures - they might still be alive - the young couple proberbly somewhere between 70 and 75.
  20. I just remembered one more thing in the late 40ties there was a fashion called New Look actually created by Christian Dior and that was with a skirt length 25-30cm underneath the knees.
    The skirts the women in the pictures are wearing are much shorter, and again that says early 60ties.
    And Henrik next time there is a Danish movie from late 50ties or early 60ties in one of the Danish tv channels, then look how they are dressed - a little hint some thing with Dirch Passer, Ghita Nørby, Ebbe langberg.

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