I noticed after developing negatives that my camera isn't advancing to the next frame of negative consistantly after a picture has been taken. Most frames end up overlapping. What is the cause of this problem and can it be fixed?
Are you sure that you have loaded the film properly?
Sometimes if you have not started the film so that the sprocket pulls the film correctly the film can aquire slack and the teeth of the sprocket may not be successfully pulling the film from the canister each time.
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Are you looking at the picture as in a print OR are you holding the negative up to the light and looking at it that way. Don't touch the negatives, they should be in a protective sleeve but you can see through it. You should be able to see if the spacing between the frames is messed up and if you have lighter and darker negatives. Looking at a print from an automated one hour service isn't worth the time of day to determine a problem. The Pentax K1000 is the work horse of the century for students learning photography and a lot of them have seen extensive use, also the camera is quite old. What I expect is if the negatives are showing overlapping frames AND the exposure is off sometimes over and other times underexposed then the camera needs service lubrication and adjustment. It's great that the light meter is working but the shutter speed could be off and the advance is skipping giving the overlap. I don't know where you are in this world but in Canada that's a $80.00 to $120.00 fix and have the repair person change the light seals while he/she has it apart. The Pentax K1000 is still a great camera it's up to you whether or not to spend the money. I can't tell you what to do but I can suggest that if you are going to shoot film you find some place that does it with a little more human touch. Hope this was a help
If you can see the frame numbers on the edge of the unexposed negatives, the problem is most likely either the camera's shutter is not opening, or the camera's take-up/advance mechanism isn't working properly. It could also be that the film isn't being loaded correctly. Check all three, or have a camera shop (not department store!) check it out for you. They should be able to test the first two situations easily, and help you if it's a loading problem.
I take it the streak is a hot streak of light. If you're shooting negative, look at the negative and see if it's one long streak. If so the light leak could be anywhere between the film roll and the take up roll. I would open up the back, go into a closet and shine a bright light on the front of the camera and see if you can find the leak and tape it up. Otherwise, 35mm SLR's are very cheap these days. I'd recommend a Canon A-1 for your daughter, but you can't go wrong with any Canon or Nikon.
There doesn't seem to be a pattern with any of the Fuji films (I use Sensia and Velvia, exclusively, and have never had a problem in my Canon EOS). There are reports that the Fuji Pro films will gum up the sprockets in a camera, thanks to an adhesive strip at the end of the roll, but I'm not sure if the regular 400 speed film has the same problem. You might try a thorough cleaning, and see if it is still happening. I'm not surprised that 400 speed comes out a tad dark. Try dropping to 200 speed (I generally won't use anything above 100 speed, unless it is black&while).
To check to see if it is a camera fault of developing fault you could try using a cheap colour film in the camera and getting it developed at a normal photo processor.
This will determine in which half of the process the fault lies.
If the pictures from the colour film are the same then it must be a camera usage problem or fault.
If the pictures are ok from the colour film then it will be a problem in either the film being used, developing problem (poor mix of chemicals etc).
The camera has a panoramic switch on it somwhere that caused a pair of baffles to close down over the film exposing only the center 1/2 of the film. The idea is that the print from this negative would be printed as a 4x11.5 inch photo. It's basically a 8x11.5 with the top and bottom of the print chopped off.
The only other alternative is that for some cameras had a panoramic adapter to place inside the film chamber, but that would be a very difficult thing to do inadvertantly.
"Clear" = no exposure, right? Two possibilities: light not getting in; or film not advancing. To check the former, take a "picture" with the camera open at the back. See the light through the lens? Yes = OK, No = there is a problem with the shutter. Most likely the film is not advancing. Here's a test. Load the camera with a roll of film and take one picture. Open the camera and see if film moved. If not, go read the manual to make sure you are loading it properly.