Instructables
I'll be the first to admit that this project solves no critical problem and serves no practical purpose other than to have a bit of fun with other people.

My goal was to install a modern digital camera inside the housing of an old, obsolete camera.  I thought it might be fun to pull this camera out in a crowd of people and make them wonder why in the world an old man would continue to use a camera that was obviously as old as he was, as opposed to something more modern.

I initially thought about finding an old huge Polaroid instant camera (you know, the giant ones in molded plastic cases), but decided I didn't want to lug one of those around.  I also considered using an old bellows camera, but was afraid I would run into focal length problems.

I settled on an Augus C3 camera, since there are a lot of these available at cheap prices, and they really look old!  Plus, the C3 was built with the lens off-centered on the front of the camera, just like most modern digital cameras are made.  That would make it easier to line up the digital camera with the lens opening on the old camera.

Step 1: Materials and tools used

The materials used were:
- a Pentax digital camera ($15 at a garage sale)
- an Argus C3 camera (in non-working condition) ($9)
- a piece of scrap 1/8th inch black micarta
- small scrap of wood for shim
- small piece of closed cell foam
- miscellaneous fasteners
- glue

Tools used were:
- rotary tool with a cut-off wheel and grinding stone
- drill & bits
- bandsaw (jig saw would work as well)
- sense of humor!
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up
Way cool idea.... and been thinking of trying to do something like this. I live in a town that has a D-Day reenactment and was thinking it would be cool to have a digital mounted in a 1940's style body to try to participate in the event next year.
HollyMann1 year ago
Awesome fun project!!!
GIguy19451 year ago
Where would I find micarta like you used? I am going to do the same project and use it for WWII reenacting. This is an awesome project by the way!
knife141 (author)  GIguy19451 year ago
I think the micarta I used came from Texas Knifemakers Supply. They have a web site.
Grimmy Grim2 years ago
This is fantastic! I love this sorta stuff and it's fun as heck.
knife141 (author)  Grimmy Grim2 years ago
Thanks for your comment! I've had a lot of fun with my "old" digital camera.
Awesome project! You have inspired me. I kinda wish though, that you used the original shutter button, electronically adapted or something.
knife141 (author)  Unclegummers3 years ago
I would have liked to use the original shutter, but unfortunately I didn't have enough clearance inside the case to link it up, and my old eyes aren't good enough anymore to try to solder to tiny circuit boards. Thank you for your comment!
rimar20003 years ago
Very good idea!
holeshot3 years ago
I have a good friend who is a WW2 reenactor. He's always bugging me to come to reenactments and try it out. As a history buff and hobbyist photographer, I'd love to go out and take pics of the "battles" but a modern digital SLR would be definitely out of place. I've long thought about how to put a good quality digital camera into the guts of a vintage body.
Cool!
knife141 (author)  holeshot3 years ago
That would be really neat! You might want to consider putting a digital camera into an old box camera. Box cameras are easy to find, and there's plenty of room inside for mounting a digital camera. You will need a way to aim the camera, though. One thing you might consider is to cut down the depth of the box camera's housing and then you could cut a window in the back like I did on the C3. Just a thought. Thanks for your comment.
Phil B3 years ago
Digital cameras are such an advance over film cameras in many respects, but often have a sterile stainless steel look. Even the manufacturers are beginning to make digital cameras with a retro look, for example the new Fuji X100. But, at $1,200 for the Fuji, your's is much more reasonably priced. 

By the way, the Argus C3 was affectionately called "the brick" in its day.
51q8CZhWm7L._AA115_.jpg
knife141 (author)  Phil B3 years ago
Phil -- Thanks for reminding me of this camera's nickname! It was called "the brick" for good reason. The body of the camera was very thick and heavy -- it may have been bakelite. Thanks for your comment!
Raigmoul3 years ago
I could not stop laughing when I finished reading your instructable :-)
A couple of my friends are professional photographers who'll fall for this for sure ....

Well done indeed sir, that's one of the best mods I've seen in a long time.

I'm gonna try to find one of these this weekend, and I honestly hope I can replicate your excellent work.

Congrats and job well done.

R
knife141 (author)  Raigmoul3 years ago
I got the idea for this while on a trip overseas. I was standing in a huge group of tourists and thought how much fun it might be to be taking photos amid these people with a camera that appeared to be ancient and obsolete. It has been fun!
I loved my C3, some of my clearest, cleanest, most inspired photos were taken with that old Argus. When that gave up the ghost, my wife gave me a Pentax K1000, and the interchangeability really gave me new opportunities. Now on my 2nd digital camera and want to get back to a SLR style digital. Hmm, with the low price of point and shoots these days, it makes me want to follow your footsteps into the past and present. Excellent job!

Qa
knife141 (author)  Quercus austrina3 years ago
The old Argus C3's were great cameras. My dad had one, and I believe the C3 was the first 35mm camera that was affordable. Many are still used by film photographers today. They were almost unbreakable. Heavy, but durable!
Thanks for your comments.
Warlrosity3 years ago
Wow. That is awesome. Thanks for sharing.