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Article: How do I replace the film shield on my Polaroid 600 camera?

How do I replace the film shield on my Polaroid 600 camera?

What is a film shield?

The film shield is an important part of all Polaroid cameras. It is an opaque sheet of material that extends out of the camera over the photo as it ejects from the camera. It is designed to protect the sensitive film in the critical first few moments as it exits its light-tight cavity inside of the camera and enters the world which is filled with light. 

Why should I replace the film shield on my Polaroid 600 camera?

All Polaroid 600 cameras are manufactured with a film shield already installed on the camera. The original film shields made by Polaroid in the 80s and 90s were designed to automatically retract back into the camera once the photo fully ejects from the camera. Because of this automatic retraction, the film is only protected for less than a second. Modern-day Polaroid instant film is more sensitive than vintage film, so it is recommended to shield your film from light as long as possible while it develops. To achieve this, you can install a slightly longer film shield that stays hooked around the edge of the ejected photo until you are ready to retract it manually. 

How do I remove the film shield from my camera?

To remove the film shield, all you need is a small flathead screwdriver, like one that is used for eyeglasses and jewelry. Open the film door on your camera and hold it firmly in your lap with the bottom of your camera facing away from you. 

Locate the two tabs on either side of the plastic piece that holds the film shield in place. Using the screwdriver, gently lift these tabs up one at a time until they are unlatched from the camera's film door. On some models, there is also a tab in the middle of the gripper. Gently push this tab forward and the gripper will disengage from the camera. 

Once these tabs are lifted, the film shield gripper will disconnect from the camera. Remove the old film shield from the film shield gripper and discard. Take your new film shield and line the holes up up with the same tabs you engaged to remove the film shield. The film shield should curl down, not up.

To install it back onto the camera, close your camera film door. Grab the film shield gripper with the film shield installed. Line up the film shield gripper to the front of the camera's film door. Gently shift it around until you feel the two tabs line up with their associated holes. Once you can tell the gripper is seated in the right spot, press down firmly on the film shield gripper until both tabs click into place. If installed correctly, the film shield gripper will be completely immovable and the film shield should curl down towards the bottom of the camera. 

Now that your film shield is installed, you can be confident that your photos will be shielded from the light in those first few critical moments after the developing image is ejected from the camera. 

For another view of this process, see our video below:

If you require additional assistance with this process, please contact