Archive for the 'Lego Cameras' Category

Updated 35mm Lego Camera Design

Wednesday, July 5th, 2006


Inspired by George Bristol’s variation on the film advance mechanism of my Lego camera, I have reworked the design of my 35mm Lego camera. The new camera has several things going for it. Overall it is slightly smaller. It now has an internal shutter mechanism which replaces the clumsy swinging door of the earlier model. Most importantly, I came up with a simple way to rewind the film so now the camera no longer needs to be unloaded in the dark. I have tested a couple of rolls of film with it and the improvements make this a very fun little toy! I am seriously starting to consider selling these, perhaps on Ebay. Would anybody be interested? What do you think it would be worth?

Here are some photos and explanations of the new and improved 35mm Lego camera…


Another Lego Camera Siting

Tuesday, July 4th, 2006

full.jpg One of the most rewarding things about my Lego camera project is seeing people taking my ideas and making them their own. George B, Bristol is the most recent person to share their Lego camera with me. George was kind enough to provide his Ldraw files that he made in LeoCad if you would like to see how his camera differs from my design.

Right click to save the LeoCad files to your computer: Main Body Outer Body

Thanks, George!


Lego Camera Update

Wednesday, May 24th, 2006

LegoCameraV2.gif I haven’t built any new cameras lately, but I have been shooting about a roll a week with my Lego camera. I have been tweaking the design and modifying things and I think I finally have a camera that I am pretty happy with. You can read about the original Lego camera design here. Here is a description of some of the improvements I have made:


Lego Camera With Mindstorms

Sunday, May 14th, 2006

There has been another Lego camera sighting, but this time the camera comes equipped with Mindstorms! For those of you who don’t know, Mindstorms are Lego robotics kits. It is kind of hard to tell what the robotic parts actually do on this camera, but I assume it controls the shutter. It would be really impressive if it advanced the film as well. Could that be true? I am not real confident that I translated the site correctly, but I think the inventor’s name is Markus Thomas. You can view his camera here and one of the photos he took with it here. Congratulations, Markus! Very impressive.

My Lego Camera’s Cousin

Wednesday, February 15th, 2006


As far as I know, Koen Beets is the first person to build a camera out of Legos from the directions I posted back in November. I was glad to learn about some of the tweaks Koen made to his version of my medium format Lego pinhole camera. Most notably, he was able to make it light-tight without using any tape! His solution was to make the walls four bricks thick. It looks pretty cool, and Koen has taken some pretty cool photos with it, too. Go on over to and check it out.

Lego Panoramic Camera

Tuesday, December 27th, 2005



Soon after I built my 35mm Lego pinhole camera, it struck me that there wasn’t any reason why I couldn’t just make the camera longer and create a panoramic version of the Lego camera. While I prefer a more square format, I couldn’t help but build this camera. The result was a camera that produced a 78mm x 24mm negative. Since the Lego pinhole camera doesn’t have a mask, the entire negative is esposed including the sprocket holes, which looks something like this:


If you are interested in pinhole photography, Ebay might be a good place to find a starter pinhole camera. Here are the pinhole camera auctions going on right now:

Lego Camera Instructions

Tuesday, November 29th, 2005

I finally finished building the medium format Lego camera in Bricksmith. Bricksmith is a free program with a library of Lego parts that allows you to build 3d models out of virtual Lego bricks. It requires Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther) or later, so I apologize to all the PC users out there. I couldn’t get Lego’s Digital Designer to run very well on either my PC or my Mac, and Bricksmith worked extremely well. Maybe somebody can volunteer to rebuild this in Digital Designer and share it with our PC friends.

Without further delay, here are the Bricksmith files for you to download: MainCameraBody.ldr (28kb) Outer_Box.ldr (12kb)

The main camera body is made of 156 pieces. The outer box is made of 63 pieces. I will try and get a parts list up here soon.

Instructions for the 35mm version is in the distant future. Hopefully I will get to it eventually. You can get a pretty good idea of how to build that camera from looking at these instructions because they use the same film advance assembly. If you download the Bricksmith files, please give me some feedback as well as any errors you find.

35mm Lego Camera

Saturday, November 5th, 2005


Last night I tackled the project of a 35mm version of my medium format pinhole Lego camera. It turned out to be easier than I expected. I should probably have spent the time making better instructions for the medium format version, but rest assured, those are in the works. Anyway, here are a couple highlights of this camera’s design that are different from the medium format version…


The Lego Camera Tours the Internet

Monday, October 10th, 2005

Thanks to some high profile links, my Lego Camera has been getting a surge of attention. My life is complete after being mentioned on BoingBoing, Metafilter, Engadget, and Digg.

Thanks to everybody for your kind words, and links! Hopefully my bandwidth will hold up, and some of you guys will come back! On a related note, you probably noticed the Google advertisements cluttering up my beautiful site. Sorry.

If you are interested in pinhole photography, Ebay might be a good place to find a starter pinhole camera. Here are the pinhole camera auctions going on right now:

Medium Format Pinhole Lego Camera

Sunday, October 2nd, 2005


After making the Lego conversion of my old Polaroid 95a, I decided to tackle another Lego challenge: a medium format Pinhole Lego Camera. I had several goals for the lego camera:

  1. First, I wanted to make sure that the film advance knob only turned one direction.

  2. Secondly, I wanted to have a film counter in addition to the red window.

  3. And last but not least, it would be nice to have some sort of viewfinder.