I just got my holga and i used the film included in the package. The film is all black. Is that normal? I'm a beginner. Also, it says in my manual that the red window will show the exposures still available but it's not there. :| Please help me.
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Re: film problem for my holga
Black film as in underexpose, after you have them printed?
If you open a roll of 120 film:
Remove the little tape holding to the film.
Place film onto Film Spool Studs.
Pull film out from film leader and thread to Take Spool.
Turn until Arrow Line on film aligns with Start Mark of Film Holder.
Close film cover or back.
Advance camera to Zero (0). Now you are ready to shoot.
Just rememer what film speed your are using.
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If you're saying that you have accidentally wound the film leader of an unused film back into the canister, then you need a film leader retriever (also known as a leader picker).
The tool costs typically around £6 plus shipping, so it's usually cheaper just to buy another film, but if you ask nicely at a camera shop (not many of those left!) then if they have one they might help you for free. Especially if you're buying stuff like films/processing from them.
Sorry but without examining the camera it's impossible to give a definite answer.
What is certain is that all Holga and Lomos are very cheaply manufactured from poor quality materials and that spare parts are not available as they're not designed to be repaired. Almost all of thenm state that the camera lifespan is about 12 rolls of film and on some models it's as low as 6 rolls. The low quality is not really an issue in their home markets as they sell for peanuts in China, but as they've become a fashionable item in the West the importers put them in fancy packaging and charge silly prices.
Most commonly the winder knob either breaks off or the gears inside strip. Sometimes the first fault can be temporarily repaired by drilling and inserting a screw. The second fault cannot be realistically fixed. Unfortunately, most Holgas are made from plastics which are incompatible with most glues.
Sorry to disappoint you, but your only realistic fix is likely to be to replace the camera. There are plenty of old non-professional 120 film cameras lying unused, all you have to do is ask on FreeCycle or Freegle. Such models will usually be better built and have better lenses and light seals though, so you may lose some of the lo-fi unpredictablity that Holgas and Lomos are popular for.
All Holgas are very badly made (which is why they produce the unpredictable image results that they're currently fashionable for) and it's not uncommon for them to be faulty from new. Also, don't expect the camera to last for more than about 12 rolls of film before it breaks: Holga specifically state that as an expected model lifespan on many of their model instructions and on some models they limit is even lower.
This is due to a poorly manufactured and designed camera: it IS a Holga, after all...
What's happening is that the film advance is allowing the film backing paper (which has the numbers printed on) to slip relative to the film. All you can do is to learn when to compensate by advancing the film a little more than the numbers indicate.
Given that most Holgas are only designed to last for around ten to twelve rolls of film (they can last far longer though), you might not have to put up with the fault for much longer.
I just had the same problem, but then I realized that the film was not fed properly through the rollers...after struggling for a while, I managed to feed it properly, but now I am getting a large white streak where the rollers are. Any suggestions?