Hasselblad 500 c/m

I am now the proud owner of a fully working Hasselblad 500 c/m.

This 100% mechanical masterpiece is as good in the hand as everyone says they are and a pure pleasure to use & via the serial number was made in 1978, so quite new for a c/m. Lens was made in 1975.

My early experience using the Hasselblad 500 c/m , loading, unloading and taking shots has been a real joy and in essence not to dissimilar to my Bronica SQ.

I have shot 4 or 5 rolls of 120 already, taking mainly portraits of friends at car boots sales I visit regularly.

It is a real head turner, and photographers and non photographers alike love the look of it.

Winding on to reset it for the next frame is a beautiful thing to hear.

All those gears whirling and cogs turning scientifically perfect, setting you up for your next masterpiece.

With the camera I was given one each of the backs and here I share my path with the oldest one so that you do not waste film like I did on loading it.

The modern one is a simple feed, close and wind to first frame affair.

Quicker and easier than the older back and why they are more expensive.

So what’s with the old back then Dave?

The initial process of getting the film from one side to the other is the same, loading into the case is the same but now this is where I got caught out.

I naturally thought I would crank on the film using the winder until it stopped at frame one…… WRONG!!!!

You have to drop down the thing on the back that you can set to remind you which ISO film you have in the back and look down the hole that’s in the back.

While you crank on the film, go slow at first until you get the hang of it, you will “eventually ” see the arrow which lets you know frame No.1 is coming.

Stop when you see the No.1 and THIS IS IMPORTANT, turn the winder back until the number resets to frame one.

Sounds a bit of a faff but I have now loaded and unloaded three films in the older back and the process becomes fluid and easy now you know hat to do.

Only a little slower than the modern A12 back.

I am in the early days of planning a film project with my camera club, much more about that later, and used the Hasselblad out and about for a couple of days to get some rolls of both B&W and Colour film.

These will be developed at my Camera club as part of the film project I mentioned & once scanned I will share the early results here.

Add-ons I have already bought for the Hasselblad 500 c/m.

First lets chat about the focusing screen that came with the camera.

This was the original cross focusing screen, and although it is good to use I knew there were brighter screens out there with spilt focus to help focusing on subject with my ailing eyesight, even with glasses.

I’m letting you into a secret.

The brand new, well newest, Hasselblad CFV-50c focusing screen, which is about 2 stops brighter and has the split focus, fits straight into the 500 c/m and is a treat to use.

Below is a side by side I quickly took using my phone to give you and Idea of the difference.

Hasselblad cross hair screen v CFV-50c screen

The wonderful people a Clifton Cameras had 4 left in stock when I bought mine, but I do not think they will hang around long, even at £200.00 each.

I have also bought a Hasselblad Meter Prism Finder PME3 (45 degree) as the built in metering and eye level composing will come in very useful as time goes on.

Hasselblad Meter Prism Finder PME3

I plan to use mw Hasselblad 500 c/m a lot over the coming years so once the test rolls are developed and I can see if she is working well or not (UPDATE: She is working really well indeed and no light leaks), I will send her to Steve at Camserve, my camera mechanic, to give it a once over and a bit of TLC, so she will give me a lot of good service over the coming years.

Please pop back soon as I will add the images I have taken, good or bad, here once I have developed and scanned them and to find out about the film project developing via my camera club.

Wishing you well

DC x

Leave a Reply