Meet “Esellar”, a reborn Nikon N75 film SLR. No, it doesn’t talk, move, or take pictures. It doesn’t do anything. Why did I cannibalize a perfectly good camera to create this hideous looking thing if it doesn’t do anything? Well, the Nikon N75 didn’t do anything either. It was sitting on the shelf collecting dust. And the camera in its previous form really wasn’t anything to blog about either. But here it is the one and only “Esellar”.
Initially, I only wanted to take apart this camera to see how it was put together. Fyi, I take apart lots of things. And in the process I learn a lot about how various things are made. I have disassembled everything from laptops and amplifiers to rice cookers and air conditioners. Mostly for repairs but some were cannibalized for the sake of curiosity. For my Honda CRX project, I took apart an entire car and put it back together. But I must say, this SLR camera was probably the most complex of all things that I had took apart so far.
The complexity of mechanical planning, routing, design and the level of precision was simply staggering. Each and every piece is put together with absolutely no tolerance. They fit precisely in position in precise order. All this happens in an extremely small amount of space. When I was done taking it apart, I was left with hundreds (I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a thousand) of tiny pieces. Keep in mind this is a humble Nikon N75 ‘film’ SLR which sold for measly $250 or so even when new. But the amount of technology, precision, and design that went into this little thing left me speechless. These are mass produced cameras that are put together in a factory. It’s just amazing.
So I thought I’d create something that would pay tribute to its amazing complexity by showcasing all of its bits and pieces in some way. Hences the “Esellar” was born. =)
It uses ALL of the bits that came off the Nikon N75. Most screws are so small I had to use tweezers to pick them up. Only bit that isn’t part of the camera is the heat sink that I used as a base which came off my old Macintosh G3.
Next time when you stare down at your digital SLR – which may be a thousand times more complex than the N75 – just know that what you hold in your hand is probably one of the most amazing piece of modern technological marvel.