Author name: Kodachromeguy

Retired coastal and marine geologist, photographer since the mid-1960s. Current resident of Mississippi, USA. Cameras in rotation: Leica M2, Leica IIIC, Pentax Spotmatic, Voigtländer Vito BL, Rolleiflex 3.5E, Hasselblad 501CM, Fuji GW690II, and (rarely) a Tachihara 4×5".

Hasselblad XPan and its Fabulous 30mm f/5.6 Lens in Mississippi – by Andrew Morang

A few months ago, I spent some time reprocessing panoramas that I took years ago. These were the standard panoramas based on standing in one place and rotating the camera with overlap on each frame. I showed some of them to a friend here in town. He responded that he was scanning some of his Hasselblad XPan negatives. Would I like to use the camera? What? There is an Xpan cameras in my little town and I can use it? You know my response! In 2004, I rented an XPan when I was working in Seattle, so I had some familiarity with the concept, but I barely had time to experiment with it.

“I am Lonely” Said Vinnie the Voigtländer Vito BL – by Andrew Morang

Vinnie, the little Voigtländer Vito BL camera, shares shelf space with his friend, Spottie, the Honeywell Spotmatic.

Both feel a bit neglected. After all, one can only use so many cameras in rotation. 35MMC readers will remember that Spottie took an outing recently. Vinnie was jealous. Although well over 60, Vinnie is still a sturdy, well-built little fellow. He is strong and rigid, and has a fine 50mm ƒ/3.5 Color Skopar lens. This is a unit-focus 4-element lens, Voigtländer’s masterful 1949 revision of the classic Tessar formula. This may be one of the best of these post-war 4-element lenses, and it benefitted from being coated. The refined lens and the precision of the entire system contributes to Vinnie’s excellent optical output.

GAF Versapan (135) – Another Expired Film Treasure – by Andrew Morang

Oh oh, trouble: I had film GAS.

In spring of 2020, a friend gave me a cooler full of GAF Versapan 4×5″ film packs. He had stored them in freezers since the 1960s. They proved to be completely viable, and I liked the results so much, I looked for other sizes of Versapan film on eBay. Amazingly, a fellow listed three rolls of 135 size Versapan with 1974 expiration, which he claimed had been frozen. Well, that was too good to resist, so I bought them. I know, I know, no self-discipline.

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