Thrifted Finds: Polaroid SX-70 gets a new face - literally.

A few months ago, probably sometime in November, I went to the Indianapolis Vintage Market. We arrived right when everyone was closing up shop and most of the vendors that were left were willing to part with their wares at a discount. We got a beautiful portrait of a lady for half the price it had been selling for all day. I found a leather camera bag coated in black dust and within, a Polaroid SX-70 missing it's shutter button, but otherwise in beautiful condition. I talked down the price from $20 to $10 because it was damaged, a thing I feel kind of guilty about , but I guess that's bargaining. That being said, I knew it was coated in some kind of battery acid, so I had now idea what I was getting.

You can see the residue from the scotch tape. The button's mechanism is resting in it's spot without a protective cover to keep it in place.

You can see the residue from the scotch tape. The button's mechanism is resting in it's spot without a protective cover to keep it in place.

See...

See...

I tried looking for a repair service to take a look at it, but wasn't getting anywhere. Finally, I strapped on some latex gloves and went about cleaning the camera with vinegar. I discovered that the battery acid was from a flash attachment included with the camera. The corrosion was so bad that I couldn't salvage it. The bag itself was so heavily caked in acid-dust that I tossed it as well. But I cleaned up the camera and had it sitting there with the shutter button crudely attached with scotch tape. Then I took it off and set about trying to get it fixed.

I went to reddit.com/r/polaroid to find help. They led me to landcameras.com. The guy running the site was extremely kind and patient with me. He sold me a front plate for $30 and sent me a video tutorial on how to replace it myself.

The old front plate. Pretty clear that all of the shutter button was broken.

The old front plate. Pretty clear that all of the shutter button was broken.

As simple as it was meant to be, I was afraid to break the camera, so I had some trouble popping the old one out. Sure enough, I got the new one on, purchased some Impossible film and tested it out. It works! So a working Polaroid SX-70 (usually a whole ton of money) for $40.

All fixed!

All fixed!

Square donuts

Square donuts