Jump to content


Photo

Buying an Arri IIC


  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 Bryce Lansing

Bryce Lansing
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 73 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 12 March 2010 - 03:18 PM

I'm looking to buy a basic Arri IIC package soon, But i don't want to get ripped off, or spend a few thousand on a camera that will end up costing me a lot more.

What should I keep an eye out for when looking at used IICs? Are there any red flags that say "don't buy this camera!"? How reliable and durable are IICs?
  • 0

#2 Oliver Christoph Kochs

Oliver Christoph Kochs
  • Sustaining Members
  • 323 posts
  • Film Loader
  • Germany

Posted 12 March 2010 - 03:51 PM

Hello Bryce,

the 2C is very basic and known as a workhorse camera. There are things i have come across that can make this camera a lemon:
A. The mags. There are 2 types - go with the newer "dome type" and have them checked. They have friction rollers inside that can let your film roll inside the camera and jam it.
B. The mirror is very hard to come by so when you buy one it should be unscratched.
C. Image steadiness. Ask to do a test before you buy. (That "horizontal cross test as a double exposure" thing)
D. The cinematography crystal motor seems to be the best ever made. Get a flatbase motor. Tobin, Panni, Thoma. You can't mount the handgrip on a tripod except with a special riser and that adds unnecessary weight to your unit.

A good 2C should be worth 1800 US$. PL mount is a must and adds another 800 US$ at least.

Also be aware of that the camera can be very noisy. Personal story: I once shot a narrative short which was my only film shot on 35mm as a director. I chose the 2C as it was my posession and the camera was so loud that it really distracted the actors. So the DP rented a 535 the next day. This didn't save my film but it helped the cast. So just be aware and choose a 2C for the right project.
Good luck. Oliver
  • 0

#3 Bryce Lansing

Bryce Lansing
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 73 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 12 March 2010 - 06:03 PM

Oliver,

Thank you for the tips!

-With the mags, is it something I'd be able to check myself? Or would I have to take it somewhere to get it checked?
-For the image steadiness, how do I test this?
-What about the power situation? The only film camera I've ever owned was a Bolex with the spring motor, is buying an old electric motor risky?

Thanks!
  • 0

#4 Oliver Christoph Kochs

Oliver Christoph Kochs
  • Sustaining Members
  • 323 posts
  • Film Loader
  • Germany

Posted 12 March 2010 - 08:13 PM

Hey Bryce,
i am sure that LOTS of these issues have been covered here before, just search for "2C" or "IIC" and the like...

Is it something I'd be able to check myself?

Maybe. Take off the back cover. The gear is made of reddish brass / newer manufactures are iron or steel. There are rings made of felt around the axis that control the friction. They act as a brake - when the camera stops the mag should no longer feed film to avoid jams. Test this for all speeds - it may work well at standard speed but jam at 50fps.

For the image steadiness, how do I test this?

There may be other methods but here's the test i've always done...
Load (old unexposed film / no matter what stock or kind) to the mag and thread the gate.
Look through the lens mount: Mark the film from the outside with the lens off with a pen. (You have to find that frame later on after rewinding)
Nail the 2C rock solid on a tripod. Do NOT move the camera body during the test.
In front of the camera place a siemens test-chart or a vertical cross (print that out from PS or AI)
Use a 50mm or so lens. Meter it and compensate for the double exposure you're gonna make.
Adjust the focus to the test chart and tape the lens' aperture and distance.
Shoot a minimum of 30 seconds.
Rewind the film - you probably have to remove the mag to do this. Put the film back in the 2C and take the lens off.
Look through the lens mount onto the gate: Wind the film forward and find the frame again you marked. Choose the right out of the 4 perfs. Put the lens back on.
Offset the test chart slightly (one inch) and expose the second pass of the test chart for another 30 seconds.
Unload mag and get it processed.
Ask the lab if they can screen it for you on the largest screen they have. Here's the moment of truth:
If the star / cross moves or jitters much the steadiness is bad. Keep in mind: A 2C has a very basic design, missing registration so don't expect too much.*

What about the power situation?

They're old but built to last. Again, there are aftermarket motors like the Tobin or cinematography that add crystal speeds to the 2C.
I always liked to shoot with the 24fps governor motor. It worked with a small Panasonic 12V lead battery that i could tape to the mag.

*My 2C has a gate weave of approx. 5 pixels on a 2K scan.

Hope this helps
Oliver
  • 0

#5 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 13 March 2010 - 12:16 AM

Before you go to the effort of shooting a registration test, look at the pulldown mechanism. The thing that drives the claw up and down should be a cam about the size of a fingernail. If it's just a screw that fits in a slot about 3-4 mm wide, you don't have a II-C. That's a model I or a very early II. They're strictly antiques, and can't be as steady as the real II-C. If you find one with a serial number under 2000, let me know -- I collect those.




-- J.S.
  • 0

#6 Oliver Christoph Kochs

Oliver Christoph Kochs
  • Sustaining Members
  • 323 posts
  • Film Loader
  • Germany

Posted 13 March 2010 - 05:01 PM

John, isn't the round knob eyepiece closer on the door a certain sign of a "true" 2C with the transport system you describe?
  • 0

#7 Tim Carroll

Tim Carroll
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2165 posts
  • Other
  • Chicago, Illinois

Posted 13 March 2010 - 05:22 PM

John, isn't the round knob eyepiece closer on the door a certain sign of a "true" 2C with the transport system you describe?


I've seen IIC doors fitted to IIB cameras, though I have never seen a IIC door fitted to a IIA. Come to think of it, I have never seen a IIA in person.

So the IIC door does not necessarily make it a IIC camera.

I also have heard, though maybe incorrectly, that the cardoid cam design was refined and the later cameras (IIC) have a better cam design than the earlier cam cameras. So, from my info, there were three different movements, the original screw through the long slot drive (early IIA cameras), the original cam cameras, and the later refined cardoid cam cameras.

Again, I could be a little bit off on that.

Best,
-Tim
  • 0

#8 Oliver Christoph Kochs

Oliver Christoph Kochs
  • Sustaining Members
  • 323 posts
  • Film Loader
  • Germany

Posted 13 March 2010 - 05:54 PM

Interesting. Maybe some techs retrofitted 2C doors due to the lack of parts. Makes sense, so a knob-door doesn't make it a 2C. Now for the movement: when i compare my Arris (on is a B and the other a C) can't see much of a difference in the movement. Are these exactly the same?

Attached Images

  • arri2C.jpg
  • arri2B.jpg

  • 0

#9 Tim Carroll

Tim Carroll
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2165 posts
  • Other
  • Chicago, Illinois

Posted 13 March 2010 - 07:49 PM

Are these exactly the same?


They are very similar, but from what I was told, the later cams held at the bottom of the stroke (before the pulldown claw retracted) just a slight bit longer than the earlier ones, which was supposed to make the image a bit more steady.

Could be one of those ARRI myths.

Best,
-Tim
  • 0

#10 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 14 March 2010 - 11:30 PM

Are these exactly the same?


I can't say for sure that they're exactly the same. They're both cardioid cams. What you don't want to see is the simple eccentric screw:

IMG_2954.JPG

-- J.S.
  • 0

#11 Oliver Christoph Kochs

Oliver Christoph Kochs
  • Sustaining Members
  • 323 posts
  • Film Loader
  • Germany

Posted 15 March 2010 - 10:20 AM

Yup. Looks different. Is that from a Model A or already B?
  • 0

#12 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 15 March 2010 - 05:31 PM

That's a Model I. The early II looks about the same, but parts aren't necessarily interchangeable, because most of the tooling for the Model I was destroyed on July 13, 1944. The first Model II was reverse engineered from surviving Model I cameras.

The difference between II and II-A isn't at all clear to me. I believe that the cardioid cam started with II-B, and the full aperture finder was the big change in going to II-C.





-- J.S.
  • 0

#13 Tim Carroll

Tim Carroll
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2165 posts
  • Other
  • Chicago, Illinois

Posted 15 March 2010 - 05:53 PM

. . . full aperture finder was the big change in going to II-C.


John, if by full aperture you mean the full Academy aperture, yes, the IIC does cover that. But it doesn't (much to my disappointment) cover the full silent aperture, or what is sometimes now called Super 35. It's kind of odd, the viewfinder can show the total height of the silent aperture, but just not the total width. The weirder thing is you can get a full silent aperture gate for the IIC, but the viewing system will only show the image area from top to bottom, not entirely right to left.

Best,
-Tim
  • 0

#14 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 15 March 2010 - 06:31 PM

Even the Model I finder covers Academy. II-C was the upgrade when they enlarged it. IIRC, you could do anamorphic, with the image in the right position for contact printing. But I never did anything but Academy. That was long before DI, so the incentive to use the track area wasn't so great. It would have required major changes to the body castings and mechanism.






-- J.S.
  • 0

#15 Oliver Christoph Kochs

Oliver Christoph Kochs
  • Sustaining Members
  • 323 posts
  • Film Loader
  • Germany

Posted 15 March 2010 - 08:44 PM

My 2C is converted to S35. The mount is very little off center so you cannot use zooms (which isn't a tragedy though) and also the gate is hardly the silent format. On this 2C I can go down to 16mm standard lenses before vignetting starts. So technically speaking the conversion is a big fail but in digital terretory it works quite well. I'd so much love to have it 2 perf but i decided on no further investment...
  • 0

#16 gavrosh haxhihyseni

gavrosh haxhihyseni
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 16 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Albania

Posted 10 May 2010 - 09:29 AM

Hi Guys

I'd lik to upgrade my IIC with a PL Mount.Can anyone show me the easiest way?

Thanks
Gavrosh Haxhihyseni
  • 0

#17 gavrosh haxhihyseni

gavrosh haxhihyseni
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 16 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Albania

Posted 10 May 2010 - 10:23 AM

Hi John!

My IIC is a serial Nr.5996.Is that one of the latest prod's?
Besides,does the claw consume during a long period of work,which gives unsteadiness of the image?

Regards
Gavrosh

Before you go to the effort of shooting a registration test, look at the pulldown mechanism. The thing that drives the claw up and down should be a cam about the size of a fingernail. If it's just a screw that fits in a slot about 3-4 mm wide, you don't have a II-C. That's a model I or a very early II. They're strictly antiques, and can't be as steady as the real II-C. If you find one with a serial number under 2000, let me know -- I collect those.




-- J.S.


  • 0

#18 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 10 May 2010 - 12:54 PM

My IIC is a serial Nr.5996.Is that one of the latest prod's?
Besides,does the claw consume during a long period of work,which gives unsteadiness of the image?


The Model II began with serial number 2000 in 1947, and they made over 17,000 of them. So, yours is fairly early in the production run for all model II's, and it's a very early -C version. But that doesn't mean much with regard to its condition. If it was owned by an individual or institution that used it very little, it could be in much better shape than a very late one that belonged to a rental house or film school. Many things wear out in the mechanism, not just the claw.



-- J.S.
  • 0

#19 Rolando Loewenstein

Rolando Loewenstein

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts

Posted 25 May 2015 - 05:19 PM

Hi, I´m selling two (2) ARRI IIC bodies. One is an original one and the second one is a modified body by PETER DENZ - Germany and it has a hard from with a NIKON F mount.

 

I have magazines and other accessories, I would like to sell it all. 

 

I also have lenses for both cameras. 

 

If anyone is interested, please let me know at my email: rloewenstein@gmail.com 


  • 0

#20 Rolando Loewenstein

Rolando Loewenstein

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts

Posted 25 May 2015 - 05:34 PM

ARRI-IIC-Original-Plano medio.jpg Attached a picture of the ARRI IIC / Original version for sale. 

 

Questions please at: rloewenstein@gmail.com


  • 0


Technodolly

Willys Widgets

Paralinx LLC

The Slider

Visual Products

Wooden Camera

Metropolis Post

FJS International, LLC

Abel Cine

Opal

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineTape

Aerial Filmworks

Tai Audio

Ritter Battery

Rig Wheels Passport

rebotnix Technologies

Glidecam

CineLab

Willys Widgets

FJS International, LLC

Aerial Filmworks

Abel Cine

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Tai Audio

Wooden Camera

CineLab

Paralinx LLC

Ritter Battery

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly

Broadcast Solutions Inc

The Slider

Metropolis Post

Glidecam

CineTape

Opal

rebotnix Technologies

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Visual Products