Lux: A 100% open source camera

Construction date: October ‎10, ‎201614947651_10206253395012415_7742180720228235077_n

Cost: ~250.00 dollars

Time to build: 20 hours

Status: Completed

This project started as I started getting into photography. I wanted to try my hands at building a completely DIY 3D printed camera. I searched around for a suitable design and was happy to find the Lux Camera Project. The Lux is a 100% open source 120mm film camera designed by Kevin Kadooka. Lux features a manual focus 65mm f/5.6 Single Element lens. The shutter is a solenoid based leaf shutter design. Just as in the original shutter, an Arduino controls shutter operation and timing.


Construction details:

The complex internal design will need to be sent out to a printing company for a powder print or if you have a resin based printer that will also work. I spent the first days printing out all the chassis elements with a new, more opaque white, developed by Form labs called White Resin (GPWH02) (Link). rs-gpwh-02

Using Kevin’s site, I bought all of the associated parts. (Link)

Also for anyone else looking to build this camera I have found that carries all of the needed lenses and mirrors.

2x 15mm Dia. x 30mm FL, Commercial Grade, Plano-Convex Lens
Stock No. 23-085

1x 17 x 23mm, 4-6λ Mirror
Stock No. 31-417

1x 19mm Dia. x 80mm FL, Positive Meniscus Lens, Grade 1
Stock No. 73-931

Total cost at this writing ~$56.90 Plus shipping

I took the steel plate to a local laser cutting shop and had them laser the necessary metal components. Assembly took a few days, as it took a while to ensure all the parts fit well.  I then painted them. I have yet to source the correct power switch, but I was able to assemble the electronics in about two days. I then spent a day cleaning up the wiring and 3D printed a 120mm take up spool. You only need one spool because once you put a roll of film through, you will end up with a more professional plastic spool. I tested the camera with Kodak 400TX 120mm film. I only got about two good images from the 12 frame film ,however the 160iso Kodak Portra did a lot better. See below for the most recent photos including picture taken with the camera.