F. and S. Marriott 140 Newbegin, Hornsea, England, HU18 1PB

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VEB Pentacon AK8 Instructions

The AK8

Lens System

View-Finder

Release Button and Selective Switch

Winding Key

Film Loading

The Exposure Setting Dial

Filters

Attachment Lenses

Compendium

Reverse Reeling Crank and Aperture Lever

Titler

Ever-Ready Case

Advice

Bottom of page

Numbers in brackets refer to Main Pictures 

The AK8 is and 8 mm. small-film shooting camera for the amateur. Its well shaped exterior, the light weight, the easy handling and the manifold attachments amplify much its scope of application.

This camera is arranged for 7.5 m. double-8 daylight film-spools. It is driven by a spring motor, which can be easily tensioned by a winding key. The spring motor's pulling power, when fully rewound, amounts to about 2 m of film. With a fixed frequency of 16 pictures per second this frequency corresponds to about 30 seconds run. An acoustic signal - which sounds, when the counter proceeds - serves as a clue to determine the length of scene.

There is a warning mark in the viewfinder, which releases the view-finder's vista at the beginning and appears in the vista.

Lens System

In view of the relatively short focal length in connection with the aperture proportion of the lens 1:2.8 10 mm. (1) permits a fixed so-called fixed-focus setting independent of the shooting distance. The range of depth of field is as follows:

f/2.8 - from 2.10 m to infinity

f/4 - from 1.67 m to infinity

f/5.6 - from 1.30 m to infinity

f/8 - from 1.00 m to infinity

f/11 - from 0.77 m to infinity

View-Finder

The built-in optical view-finder of the AK 8 is adjusted for a medium distance, parallax-free to the beams' way of the shooting lens. For close-up views less than 1 m it is necessary to consider the view-finder's parallax. The view-finder picture corresponds to the projecting picture. A control mark (warning mark) is additionally installed in the view-finder. It is coupled with the counter and disappears after the film's credit lines but appears again 7.5 m before the film's end.

Release Button and Selective Switch

The release button (5) can be operated either by hand or wire release. The kind of run can be varied by turning the sleector switch (6) to

L opposite of the index point = normal run

D opposite of the index point = continuous run

E opposite of the index point = single picture

Exposure time for all 3 positions about 1/32 second.

Winding Key

The spring can be tensioned by means of the winding key (4) by seven clockwise revolutions. Stops are installed to limit the winding and the run-off to protect the spring, firstly against overstrain and secondly to guarantee a steady frequency of pictures within the spring's run. If the camera is not used for more than 4 weeks it is advisable to let it run off until relaxed.

Film Loading

The camera is opened by pushing upwards the locking knob (8) at the back. The double-eight spool with 7.5 m reverse film can be loaded in daylight. It is pushed onto the feed-axle (13) in such a way that the film runs off in the direction of the arrow on the cover plate (16). After having uncoiled about 20 cm of film it is pulled into the film-channel over the lead-in roll (14) and at the same time the pressure-plate lever (12) pulled back.

This is done in the direction of the run until the film is properly placed within the guide-tips and is held by the gripper springing in. The empty spool, indicated by the trade-mark, is pulled off the take-up axles (9), then the film's tongue is pushed in, always observing the film-run's marks, the spool is again plugged in and slightly tensioned with a finger. Before the camera is closed, convince yourself by a short pressing of the release button (5) and setting the selective switch (6) on "L" that film-advance and the take-up operate satisfactorily.

After closing the camera, whereby the cover must be pressed until the lock clicks, the film counter (11) is brought to position "A" by turning anti-clockwise the setting knob (3) and the spring motor is wound by means of the winding key (4). Thereupon the camera is set in motion by pressing the release button (5), until the "O" of the counter (11) is under the index line.

In this way the film credit, i.e. the film exposed during loading, is reeled off. At the same time at "O" position of the counter the warning mark in the viewfinder (2) disappears as a signal that the camera is ready to shoot. After about 7.5 m film-run the warning mark appears again in the view-finder. Before opening the camera it snecessary to get the film-end advanced until the counter has moved from 7.5 m to "E". After openng the camera the film-end is eventually still to be reeled in. Now, for the exposure of the second film-half the loaded film-spool is pulled off the take-up axle (9) and - the trade-mark facing the cover plate - is placed on the feed-axle (13). Attention must be paid that the film on the loaded spool is held by slight finger pressure to prevent unreeling.

When using Agfa - metal spools, it is essential after the first film run to push the now-empty spool - the core's twopiece opening pointing upwards - on the take-up axle (9). The loading of the film for the second exposure takes lpace in the same way as described before. A third exposure by mistake is impossible with this spool design. A ready-made 7.5 m double-eight film yields, developed and cut, 15 m. film ready for projection, which runs about 4 minutes through the projector at 16 pictures per second. Do not neglect to clean the film-trap (19) and the pressure plate of the camera from time to time. For this purpose the pressure-plate holder (17) is pulled upwards and at the same time the pressure plate lever (12) pulled back and thus the film-channel and the picture-gate are set free. When closing the camera, the fixing pin (10) is pressed by the cover and in this way the correct position of the pressure plate is automatically guaranteed.

The following additional devices are valuable effective presentation-means for the enlivenment of the film-rhythm, which will be most welcome to every advanced amateur.

The Exposure Setting Dial AK 8 shall aid all users to find the correct aperture setting at a fixed frame-frequency, also if they do not possess an electric exposure meter. The triangle on the adjustable outer ring is turned to the film sensibility value corresponding to the film inserted.

The 3 fields bright, hatched and dark to the right and left of the aperture-figures have the following significance:

1) bright, beach at the seaside, high mountain chain

2) hatched, wide streets, bright forest ways

3) dark, narrow lanes, under trees

The 4 symbols at the lower part of the exposure-setting dial mean from left to right:

1) sunlight, cloudless sky

2) slightly veiled sun

3) half clouded sky

4) dull cloudy sky

The numbers of the four symbols are the corresponding focal aperture values, the numbers with a ring exceed the possible focal aperture values of the lens and must be adjusted by means of filters, see table. Here an example: Operating at the seaside with cloudless sky with 21/10 DIN film, of the left symbol the number (2) is read i.e. adjust the lens on focal aperture (11) and attach the neutral grey filter No. 1.

To obtain certain contrasts for shots to convey a mood or special effect as well as for the extension of the diaphragm scale of the lens the user has at his disposal the following colour filters and neutral grey screens.

Filters

Commercial Filters

Aperture opening in focal aperture degrees

Extension factor

yellow clear

G0

0.5

1.3

yellow medium

G1

0.75

1.5

yellow dark

G2

1.0

2.0

blue clear

B1

1.0

2.0

orange

O1

1.25

2.5

yellow-green

GR1

1.25

2.5

green

GR2

1.5

3.0

neutral

N1

2.0

4.0

red clear

R1

3.2

10.0

For the use of these filters the respective factors of extension and the such resulting aperture opening of the aperture opening degrees are to be considered. If shooting specially bright subjects, which with the smallest aperture in connection with the constant time of exposure still render overexposed films, a commercail neutral grey-filter N1 should be attached.

The range of focal aperture is extended by 2 steps with these filters. For instance: Measured time of exposure 1/32 sec., with focal aperture 11. When using a grey-filter on some conditions the aperture 5.6 results.

Attachment Lenses

For shots at close range under 0.77 m it is essential to provide the camera's lens with attachment lenses. Hereby special attention is to be paid to the parallax correction. According to the lens attached the range of depth of field is as follows:

Attached Lens

Focal aperture

f/4

 

f/5.6

 

f/8

1 diopter

70 - 165 cm.

65 - 220 cm.

56 - 475 cm.

2 diopter

42 - 60 cm.

39 - 68 cm.

36 - 82 cm.

3 diopter

29 - 38 cm.

28 - 40 cm.

26 - 44 cm.

4 diopter

22 - 28 cm.

21 - 31 cm.

When shooting with these lenses it is advisable to light up the subject to such an extent that the correct time of exposure is obtained as per aperture values indicated above.

Grey-filters, additional lenses and colour filters are fitted to the screw thread of the lens (1).

Compendium

Modern movie shooting without compendium is almost unthinkable nowadays. The compendium of the AK8 consists of two parts, the chromium-plated optic tube-ring marked AK8 and the compendium optic tubes. The first is screwed into the internal thread of the lens' outer ring and the optic tube pushed onto the tube ring. The attached optic tube represents an ideal counter-light diaphragm.

At the front of the tube there are two slideways, to which the added masks can be slipped on. In connection with them the greatest variety of effects can be obtained, such as keyhole - field-glass or telescope views, also double - or displacing shots. In addition, further trick-masks can be made at low costs according to requirement. There is also an iris-diaphragm attachment to circle in and circle out and can be placed on the ring instead of the compendium tube.

Reverse Reeling Crank and Aperture Lever

To create soft transitions to carry one scene into another for dissolves the reverse-reeling crank and the aperture lever are used.

The reverse-reeling crank is fitted to the coupling place (7) of the camera by turning the arrow-marked screw to the left. The aperture-lever is pushed onto the aperture-ring of the lens (1) by spreading the cyclic clamping, the aperture ring having been set beforehand according to light-conditions. When pushed on, the handle of the lever must touch the button of the selective switch (6). For back-reeling the film the reverse-reeling handle of the crank, running under friction, is turned anti-clockwise (direction of arrow) until the click of the release-button is audible. One revolution corresponds to the return-travel of one picture. 40 pictures maximum can be spooled back into the camera.

At a constant frequency of 16 frames per second a change-over or dissolve should lasy only 2 seconds maximum. This is in accordance with an exposure of 32 frames. During this time the aperture is shut by means of the aperture-lever. The film is now returned with the aid of the reverse-reeling crank - the lens having been covered before - by 32 frames, corresponding in this case with 32 revolutions. (Pay special attention that the spring motor is not fully tensiones, otherwise troubles may occur.)

Now the next focusing takes place and during the elapse of 2 seconds, the camera running, the aperture-lever is moved up to the stop to fade in.

 

Titler

Every amateur will be desirous to provide his films with initial and intermediate titles. The simple and easily transportable titler of the AK8 offers him the best opportunity to make movie titling himself. The attachment lens in +4 diopters, essential for the subject-to-lens-distance, is located at the fixing knob of the titler. Before shooting the picture-area must be determined and marked. For this purpose, the camera is screwed onto the titler, opened and the pressure-plate removed. To mark the picture-section, a pocket-lamp is applied to the film-trap and thus you get an illustration of the picture-gate on the screen. Keep in mind, since the shooting size of the camera is larger than that of the projector, that the measurement of the rectangle ought not exceed 82 x 110 mm. (The title is cut for projection).

The 4-diopter attachment lens requires a minimum screening off to 5.6. The sort of exposure (direct or indirect light) can be chosen as the user may determine. For letter-titling the titler can be used vertically, standing by itself on a table or hung up on a wall-hook. For such shots it is recommended to use a wire-release. The titler can be also employed for outdorr close-up views (flower shots, small animal shots etc.) if the cardboard support is pulled out.

Ever-Ready Case

Every amateur will be anxious to protect his camera against weather factors and damage of any kind. The ever-ready case of the AK6 is designed for those who want their camera including the protective casing always ready for immediate shooting. All control elements are accessible after opening the case's front and side wings. Moreover, there is an opening at the coupling place in the case for the reverse-reeling crank to be inserted. Solely for film loading the camera must be taken out of the case.

Advices

1. Hold your camera steady and upright when shooting!

2. Avoid panning too rapidly when shooting and abstain from pans contrary to the subject's direction of movement! A pan of 90 degrees should last at least 15 seconds.

3. The 8 mm film is mainly suitable for groups and close-up views, less for total and panoramic views.

4. Avoid too long and too short scenes! The normal length of a scene should be between 4 - 8 seconds.

5. Get accustomed to rewind the spring after each scene so that your camera is always ready to shoot at the "critical moment"!

6. Never let the loaded camera run up to the last picture of a spring winding!

7. Do not load or reload in direct sunlight!

8. Since black and white and colour reverse films have a smaller exposure range it is essential to select accurately the lens aperture. A photo-electric exposure meter is most suitable for this purpose.

9. For shots in counter-light the lens must be protected against direct incident light (compendium)

10. Plan thoroughly what you want to shoot. Thus you save film material and facilitate trimming.

11. For viewing, marking, cutting and editing there is a movie viewer and editor available in the trade.

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