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How to : Polaroid SX-70 modification

By • Feb 14th, 2008 • Category: Others

Since the Polaroid Time-Zero film is a thing of the past (okay maybe the Polaroid 600 is joining the Time-Zero in heaven soon 🙁 ), I had to modify a cheap SX-70 I found recently to take the 600 film.

Test photo after the modification

Having read about how to do it online, I decided to make the process slightly simpler when it comes to replacing the ND filter in front of the electric eye. Those guides online suggest using clear plastic pieces cut out from CD jewel cases. That may be a bit troublesome (or is it not?). I decided to use those easy-to-cut transparency sheets instead. First … using a small screwdriver, pry open the metal ring that holds down the ND filter in front of the electric eye. Be careful when doing this … you don’t wanna send the ring flying into your eyes. It should not take too much effort removing them. Here’s how they look like after being separated from the SX-70

Keep the ND filter in case you wanna put it back in future (why would you wanna do that?). Cut a small piece of transparency sheet, big enough to cover the electric eye. Then position and press down the metal ring you removed earlier. After doing so, carefully cut off the excess transparency sheet or just leave it there for the cool (?) factor. 😛

After doing this, I got myself a ND2 filter, cut it to the same size as the lens front … then using double-sided tape, stick the ND2 permanently in front of the lens.

It’s just that simple. Should you not want to cut a ND2 filter yourself, you can find some people selling stick-on ND filters for the SX-70 mod online. Have fun!

27 Comments »

  1. so chim sia…..

  2. Hi ndroo,

    Where to buy nd2 filter ? I gonna get my polaroid Sx 70 soon need to mod for 600 polaroid films.hehs

  3. ND2 filters are available in most camera shops. I got mine from Cathay Photo.

  4. how much is it ? Kodak shop got sell ?

  5. Rachel, I’ve no idea how much it costs. Forgot all about it already 😀 Kodak shop? Nah, those usually don’t sell such stuffs.

  6. Hey if i dont stick the transparency sheet can or not ?

  7. Rachel, you can but there will be an exposed hole there if you don’t 😛

  8. bro. i’m also looking for one SX-70. my hands very itchy.

  9. Mr Chow … you have been poisoned really deep. Muwahaha!!!

  10. hey ndroo!!
    been following your blog for a while now!! (i’m hanspan on lomography.com)
    i recently bought a polaroid sx70 land camera.. the cream one with the rainbow stripe.. hopefully i can adapt mine to use the 600 that my polaroid one uses!!
    my pics look a little different.. but im guess i can use this same principle on my camera?
    I did find the orig thread on the polaroid website but its not so clear for me.. im a little stupid!!
    xx

  11. Hi Han,

    Don’t worry. You’re normal. 😀 The thread you mentioned does sound a bit complex. I’m sure you won’t have much problem modifying your SX70 to work fine. Do share the results. Thanks for dropping by.

  12. hey im using the button land camera which uses sx70 film. but i dont know how to do the modifications. do email me!

  13. rodneykilledyourkidney … I’ve dropped you an email.

  14. Hi androo, do you know what is the size for the ND2 filter for SX70? Is it 25mm?

  15. @maxleung : Sorry but I do not know the exact size of the ND2 filter. I cut mine by first making a paper trace of the circular shape of the lens front.

  16. Now, you need to mod those Polaroids to take Instax.
    MWAHAHAHA.

  17. That spoils the fun … right? I used to love Polaroids because of the film and the colors.

  18. Hi ndroo,
    I’ve adapted my sx-70 to take 600 film, but I’ve got a ‘the button’ one I’d like to adapt. Any chance you could help me out as well?

  19. @Jef : I do not own ‘The Button’ version of the camera and thus can’t really help you out. I’ve seen photos of it … it shoulds be pretty similar to modifying the SX70. Right? Is the ‘electric eye’ in front of the darken/lighten knob?

  20. hey, just wondering where do they normally sell those kinda films for polaroids etc?

  21. @syaa : I get them from ThirtySix (at Sunshine Plaza).

  22. Hi — I bet you probably know about The Impossible Project already [www.the-impossible-project.com], but I have a leather and chrome SX-70 Alpha 1 that I did not want to modify. When all of the original Polaroid film ran out and the price got tooooooo high on eBay and the expiration dates got too old, I began buying directly from the Impossible shop in New York. They have cool experimental films and they are always coming out with new batches. They ship worldwide. I really liked the TZ Artistic and the PX100 Silvershade. They are pretty sensitive to tempreture so you have to be careful when out shooting.

  23. @Taylor Anne : Yeah I know about the Impossible Project. The SX-70 I modified was ages ago and I sold it when the 600 film got to some crazy prices. I still own one that isn’t modified and I’m still itching to stock up some new film. Hahaha. The problem is they are still pretty costly and I need to hold back purchases sometimes … as I need $ for milk powder too. 😀

  24. The photo store in my town still has a lot of time-zero film

  25. @Victor: Where are you located? Care to ship some over? =)

  26. I’m in Denmark, but they are out of tz now ):

  27. @Victor: I see… TZ films are really out of stock in many places. I tried looking around in Melbourne, Australia. But to no avail.

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