how i ended up with a bunch of great old gear


Mu-43 Regular
Sep 17, 2010
when i was in college taking a b&w photo class, i came across a photo by Gordon Parks which had a beautiful blur to it that i had not seen anywhere else. the caption described what kind of camera he used, so i quickly went to ebay in search of it. shortly after that I had to drop out and move back home - i needed something to obsess about, so i put an ad in the Milwaukee Journal classifieds saying "wanted to buy old cameras and equipment". I got calls from all kinds of people all day long, even for a few months after i stopped running the ad. Most days I got calls from people with Brownies, Argus, and Polaroids that wanted a ridiculous amount of money because "it's REEALLL old." But every once in a while I got calls from people that had been sitting on a Leica for 30 years or something like that. Most people didn't want to give their stuff away but also had nowhere to go with it, many were ecstatic with the low price I was able to offer them for their stuff that had been sitting in a box forever. In a small town like Milwaukee, I ended up getting Leicas, Hasselblads, Rolleis, a first or second year Stereo Realist (they were made in Milwaukee, I think hundreds of thousands of them, but i have number 500-something), Voigtlanders, Contax, Bolex, plenty o Graflex, and all kinds of obscure stuff i've never heard of like a police-station-made finger print camera.
Moral of the story, there is plenty of gear out there that people haven't thrown away...and for you guys out there that are obsessed with old lenses and equipment and don't want to pay too much, i recommend the crap outta getting yourself a classified ad.


Mu-43 Veteran
Sep 21, 2010
I also own a lot of crap from local flea markets or from internet sources (yes, also some from ebay).
A nice sample is here: an early (black) Periflex camera (less than $50)
(the second one was a bit higher in price...)

Just finished the first role of film (in development, I hope for some nice results)

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