Selling Film cameras

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1. Don't talk your cameras down because its film.

A study a few years ago showed that 90% professional photographers now use digital cameras, of which 60% still use film for at least some stuff, there must be a reason for this. Especially avoid using the phrase "I've upgraded" or "this camera is film not digital 35mm film needed" it's too obvious.!

Another reason to mention would be they are a great alternative to single use cameras. This for many maybe the best reason for buying (or keeping an existing) film compact is that it is worth very little you can take it out to a dodgy area or out on the town with out much danger of it being stolen and even if it is it won’t have cost very much, so there will be no need to panic. Gone are the days when you had to use a disposable camera for such a purpose, this is not necessary now as DECENT film compacts with a proper lens and focus capable of much better images, can be bought in second hand shops or on eBay for about the same price, as long as you don't get ripped off when buying the film.

2. Clean
Make sure you clean and polish your camera up before selling it, DO NOT GET POLISH ON THE LENS! Use lens cleaner for that bit (glasses cleaner should be OK).
There are too many blurry photos of cameras on Ebay and it looks ridiculous,  if your camera can't focus close enough to take a photo of the item close up without the the item going out of focus, then don't try it! Its better to take the photo from further away and then crop the image, yes remember to crop the image, Ebay scales down images to 400x400 pixels, not very big so its a good idea that your item fills that space, your driveway or whatever white goods your camera is on does not need to be seen.

3. Get some Info

If you know nothing about the camera then search for it, try to include some info on the camera, even if you nothing about it or cameras in general why not try searching for your camera on Google or other search engine there may be a fan page devoted to it or a Wikipedia article. It may also contain Data on how to use it and on what all the numbers on the camera and/or lens mean. You may want to include links to any websites you find in your auction. Saying "I don't know how this camera works" ETC ETC won't do, there is more than enough info about this on the internet. And if you can't find any info about it then why not ask someone, the Ebay forums are a good place to start.
One of the most important  things is to have the name of camera (spelled correctly) in the auction title, also try to remember to use capital letters and apostrophes where appropriate etc as bad grammar is bad marketing, remember you're not writing a text message here you're talking to your buyer.

For cameras with interchangeable lenses people will want to know what those lenses are, for more info look here www.photoaxe.com/understanding-the-lens-focal-length-and-aperture/

4. Try it with a fresh battery
If the camera is failing to function try it with a fresh battery rather than selling it as not working. I have seen cameras worth about £60 go for £16, because it was sold as seen, and the seller couldn't be bothered to try it with a battery, the type of battery for that camera I have seen in pound shops. If there is a non working battery in the camera it is still best to remove it even if you don't intend to try it with a new battery, as they can leak eventually and cause damage to  cameras. If you're unlucky enough to find an old mercury cell in a camera, do not throw it away in the normal rubbish doing so is illegal in most countries, they need to be taken to the local tip or you may be able to put them in with other batteries in your household recycle bin.

5. Check the following
I'll try and make it simple
  • Is the lens clean and free from scratches and Fungus.
  • Does everything Click right.
  • Is there a film already in the camera. If so it's best to remove it if possible, they can be put on to CD with no prints for just a few pounds in supermarkets.
  • One way to find out if many cameras are working properly is too open the back and fire the shutter with the camera held up to a light. (note some cameras won't function with the back open, but you will be able to hear it working when it's shut and don't touch the shutter.)


6. Don't slap a ridiculous reserve or starting price on it, Film cameras have fallen in value. If you want more money for it then clean it up and provide info on it,  you will get what you item is worth, nothing more!!


If I am missing a point you think I should mention, please let me know, Please leave a helpfulness vote.
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