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Author Topic: Advice for someone new to 16mm
Eric W. Cook
Junior
Posts: 13
From: Wellsboro, PA, USA
Registered: Sep 2010


 - posted March 10, 2019 03:49 PM      Profile for Eric W. Cook   Author's Homepage   Email Eric W. Cook   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I've run 8mm films for a while on an inherited B&H, today while stopping in a local antique market I saw an Ampro Century 10, ser. no. 68352 for sale. It looks to be in super condition and has the original speaker. I'm really only interested in running silent films with it. I assume it is a 16mm projector.

Is this a good machine, one that parts can be found for without too much trouble? It doesn't have the owners manual, what sort of things should I look for and what is a good price? Basically, I don't know anything, so I welcome any advice. It looks cool, but I want a machine that will be relatively easy to use, won't destroy the films I buy for it and will be affordable to repair when things inevitable wear out. Any advice you can give would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much!

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Paul Repar
Junior
Posts: 8
From: Chicago,Illinois
Registered: Apr 2006


 - posted March 11, 2019 02:36 AM      Profile for Paul Repar   Email Paul Repar   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Eric,I want to say the Ampro Century models came out in the late 1940s,Naturally,parts can sometimes be harder to find than others,motor belts are usually the first thing you want to replace.I honestly do not have much experience with Ampros,they are heavy duty,but I have read places of parts for Ampros are hard to find.My suggestion,I would invest in a Bell and Howell machine like 1500 series or 2500 series,and make sure it has the rebuilt worm gear,most of the B&H models have a sound/silent switch for films.Easy to thread and many service manuals you can find online.Also maybe try even the Eiki SSL series machines,also soft and easy on films.It is all user preference of course.Any other questions you can email me paulfortea@aol.com,I may have a friend who actually has some Eiki SSL models for sale.

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Dominique De Bast
Film God

Posts: 4277
From: Brussels, Belgium
Registered: Jun 2013


 - posted March 11, 2019 08:56 AM      Profile for Dominique De Bast   Email Dominique De Bast   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Eric, if your aim is to project silent films, whatever the model of projector you will choose, look at the blades shutter and make sure it's a three blades one (or if there is a three blades shutter spare, easy to install). With a two blades shutter, you will have, as you maybe already know, flickering at 18 (or at 16 for older machines) fps.

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Dominique

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Jim Schrader
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1554
From: Savage, MN, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted March 11, 2019 07:13 PM      Profile for Jim Schrader   Author's Homepage   Email Jim Schrader   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
One can play 16mm silent films on sound units just turn the sound down so your not hearing the machine gun sound of the sprockets going through the sound bulb. The images may move faster than what it was shot at.

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jim schrader
"Let's see “do I have that title already?"

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Dominique De Bast
Film God

Posts: 4277
From: Brussels, Belgium
Registered: Jun 2013


 - posted March 12, 2019 04:56 AM      Profile for Dominique De Bast   Email Dominique De Bast   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Jim, most of the 16mm sound projectors have two speeds : 16/24 fps for older machines and 18/24 fps for the most "recent" ones. Some projectors have a dedicated speed button while others need a modification of a belt (sometimes inside the machine, sometimes outside) position. It the shutter has three blades, no problem, but if it's a two blades one, there will be flickering. Of course, it's possible, as you say, to project a film that was shot at 16 or 18 fps at the higher 24fps speed but that's certainly not the best way to enjoy a movie experience ☺

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Dominique

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Maurice Leakey
Film God

Posts: 5600
From: Bristol. United Kingdom
Registered: Oct 2007


 - posted March 14, 2019 11:06 AM      Profile for Maurice Leakey   Email Maurice Leakey   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Eric
If you only want to show silent films it's pointless buying a sound projector.
Here's a nice 16mm silent projector for sale. The Bell & Howell design remained the same for many years.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Bell-Howell-Filmo-Diplomat-16mm-Silent-Film-Movie-Projector-Case-Works-1940s/382785344273?hash=item591fc8d311:g:TTEAAOSwbVNbRS0j

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Maurice

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