I dusted off my 35mm camera two weekends ago. I have a Minolta Dynax 2xi which was given to me on my 18th birthday. I hadn't used it in a couple of years, but recently bought a new battery for it and thoought I would take it for a spin. There were three photos left on the old film, and I had a new film in my pocket.
The scene for this photographic resurrection was to be the Horniman Museum in south Lonodon. I cannot recommend this place highly enough. Go and visit it.
After taking the final three photos, I waited to hear the familiar whirring of the camera as it rewound the film ready for the next one. This didn't happen. I got a bit of a whir, and then nothing. Silence. I was very disappointed as we were only half-way through the museum, and I had so many more pictures I wanted to take.
The next day, I took the camera to Jessops where they used a dark bag to open the camera up and rewind the film by hand. It was possible that the emulsion from the old film had degraded and stuck to itself on the spool so I put another film in to run it through. I took some closeup photos with my +4 macro filter (not sure how these will work out, but if any look good you will definitely see them here). Upon getting to the end of the film, the same thing happened, a small whir, then nothing. My beloved 35mm Minolta Dynax 2xi was dead.
One visit to Ebay later...
I have bought a Minolta Dynax 500si Super body. Because it was only the 2xi's body that was kaput, I only needed to replace that. The standard 35-85mm lense I had would work with any of the xi or si range from Minolta. This weekend past I was able to take it out on the town with me, and it was a joy to use. The 2xi was the feature-lite model of the Dynax family. This 500si has lots and lots of features to play with like:
Exposure modes (portrait, landscape, sport, night portrait)
Continuous exposure at 1fps
Apperture and shutter priority
Best of all, the camera has a built in flash. My last camera didn't have one which could be quite annoying having to carry around a hot-shoe flash.
If my new camera takes photos at the quality if the 2xi I will be mightily pleased.
Watch this space.