Recently I purchased a Polaroid 210 from the Film Photography Project. It has been an interesting ride. First one big advantage of purchasing from FFP verses eBay is their products are tested and battery conversions done where applicable. Thus the unit was ready to shoot when it came out of the box.
The problem I wasn’t ready. The first thing is one had to be aware of is these cameras we’re designed to use Polaroid pack film which used metal to make the case. The current film, made by Fuji, has plastic cases. This means that the metal clamps that’s held the film is are, for lack odd a better word, too strong. This means the paper dark slide and paper tabs are difficult to get out. As a result I managed to trash several film packs. Once tip I got from FPP and others is to put tape on the darkslide tab area to make it harder to tear, thus getting the first paper tab set right. Another tip is to get the clamps pushed down (some even cut them off) to reduce the pressure on the pack. Had I still been running into issues with the film packs. I use gaffers tape to hold the tabs down. I am going to use gaffers tape as it’s strong but low residue. Other alternatives are getting an original Polaroid pack and replacing the plastic backs with polaroid metal backs. The metal backs are designed to handle the metal tab’s pressure. Finally, if the tab is still to tight you can *very* slightly (basically unlatch it and hold it closed so light can’t get in) open the back to take the pressure off the pack. Once you take the first few shots it should be easier.
I ran into another issue. I somehow disengaged the focusing mechanism. When I went to take a look it fell apart..I had to figure out how to put it back together. Here is essentially how the focusing mirrors are laid out:
As you can see there is a mirror that reflects through glass and then can be viewed through the viewfinder
The focusing mechanism is very simple. Basically a wedge pushes a distance indicator up and down as the focusing lever is moved left to right.
This diagram shows basically how this mechanism works
I was able to put it back together successfully to my great relief.
In conclusion this is an entry level Polaroid but it can take some decent images. Personally I prefer the look for the roll film that this camera takes to the integral film used by newer Polaroids. It takes either 3000 ISO B/W or 100 ISO color film
Here are some images from this camera: