Thrift pick: “The 800” Polariod Land Camera


I purchased my “The 800” Polariod Land Camera so long ago, I don’t remember where or how much I purchased it for. But I remember the first time I saw it, I was blown away by how heavy it was and how it didn’t seem to have aged at all.

The Polaroid 800 Land Camera is an instant film camera produced by Polaroid from 1957-1962.  It has a coupled rangefinder, parallax correction and a hot shoe, the mounting point on the top of a camera used to attach a flash unit. Interestingly, it also used instant roll film, which came in two rolls with a positive and negative side.

According to The Keh Camera BlogThe 800 also features a carefully selected, high precision 130mm f8.8 three element glass lens, an electronically tested shutter and permanently lubricated roller bearings.  The camera also has a polished steel body with a light tan textured coating, and bellows that collapse for compact storage when not in use.

The Polaroid 800 has both a viewfinder window (to focus) and a rangefinder window on the back (to compose the image). It’s portable a sturdy handle, and it folds up into itself. Most of the ones that I’ve seen have a grey casing like the one above, but they also come in slightly different color variations.

Like most of my vintage cameras, all of mine sit on my bookshelf. The Polaroid 800 Land Camera is the only one big and heavy enough to serve as an effective bookend.



Sources: The Keh Camera Blog. For more information about decorating with vintage cameras, check out my piece on incorporating vintage cameras into a modern living space. To check out other features on vintage cameras, click here

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