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1950's Kodak Brownie 127 35mm Film Modification Video

(Click this link if you can't see the video.)

If, like me, you're a relative new-comer to film, the sheer number of different film types is a little over-whelming and more than a little frustrating when you learn that some of the film is hard to come-by.

This Kodak Brownie 127, that I picked up from a car-boot sale for the princely sum of 50 pence, is one such camera. Designed to work with 127 Film, which isn't commonly available, I thought I'd have a go at running some 35mm film through it and see what happened.

Kodak Brownie 127

As you can see in the video at the top of the post, putting a 35mm film cartridge into the back of a Kodak Brownie 127 is a simple matter. Just add a tap washer under the film to keep it running across the centre of the frame, and cut the film leader so that you can slide it through the middle of the spool and then tape it into position.


I had a little trouble with the amount I had to wind the film on. I tried one and a half turns, but this did lead to some double exposures, as you can see above.

I think next time I'll try two whole turns to make sure none of the frames overlap.


Another problem I had was with the red hole on the back of the camera. With paper-backed roll-film you use this little red window to see which photo you're on, but with 35mm film there's no such backing, so you need to cover the opening up. I used a piece of black paper, but as you can see it wasn't quite enough to stop some light entering the back of the camera, so I'm going to add some more before my next series of shots.


Remember that the 35mm film only covers the middle of the frame, so you're losing the top and bottom (or left and right if you're shooting portrait mode), so you've got to adjust your composition accordingly. Not a problem really, just another quirk to think about.


So, grab an old camera, pop off the back and see if you can fit a 35mm film cartridge in the back, you never know what you might be able to come up with!

Cheers, Rob.

Which Older, Non 35mm Cameras Have You Used?

I'm just dipping my toes into the more unusual formats, how about you? Please add your experiences below!

Reader Comments (9)

Rob that is a great idea .... but what are you using to count off the 35 mm frames ..?

January 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDan Boudreau

Or should I rephrase that ... what conclusion did you come to for marking out the 35mm frames .. if any ..

January 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDan Boudreau

Hi Dan,

Next time I'm going to start with two complete turns of the widing dial, then go to one and a half turns half way through the roll.

Cheers, Rob.

January 16, 2011 | Registered CommenterRob_Nunn

Hi Rob, how many pictures are you getting per roll?

July 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBen

Hi Ben,

I think I got about 12 shots.

Thanks, Rob.

July 11, 2011 | Registered CommenterRob_Nunn

HOw would you recommend getting films shot this way developed? I just tried this out with my Brownie, took the film into Boots and they cropped all the frames massively. Ideally I'd like to get the sprocket holes developed too... any suggestions?

November 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterEmma


If you're shooting colour film, by all means have it developed at Boots, but ask for develop only and not to cut your negs. Then scan them at home (sprockets and all) for that lomo look...

Thanks, Rob.

November 23, 2013 | Registered CommenterRob_Nunn

Hi Rob,

Could you tell me how to get the used film out of the Brownie so it can be developed? There's no way to rewind the film back into the cartridge... Or is there?



October 11, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSimon Claridge

Hi Simon, no, you'e got to open up the Brownie in a dark-bag (film changing bag) or a completely dark room, and wind the film back by hand....

January 11, 2015 | Registered CommenterRob_Nunn

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