Fuji Rensha Cardia

October 8th 2019

I’ve been looking at weird cameras on Ebay for 15+ years and I’m always amazed there are cameras I’ve never seen or heard of.

Fuji Rensha Cardia, camera with 8 lenses

This camera will take 8 photos across two 35mm frames in quick secession. I assume it’s original purpose was for analyzing your running gait or golf swing. There are several settings for photos from left to right or right to left and how much time there is between the photos.

Camera top with japanese settings

It looks like my camera doesn’t work though. The camera looks nearly new, but the Ebay listing said that it was untested and sold as parts only. Which makes me suspicious that they did test it, and it didn’t work. That’s Ebay, but the camera was really cheap in any case.

I checked the battery voltage, and it seemed ok. I took the case off of the camera and nothing looked mechanically broken, shorting the power switch did not make the camera turn on. I’ll have to dig a bit deeper.

I haven’t take the shutter apart yet, but it looks like the whole camera is run off of a single 6 wire stepper motor. It looks like there’s a switch below and to the right of the stepper; I assume that gives the stepper some positional feedback on where the shutters are. I guess if the electronics are blown I could probably build something myself since it really only looks like I’d need a stepper driver, and a couple of switch inputs. I hope though that I can get it working without too much fiddling around.

Fuji Rensha Cardia disassembly / teardown:

  1. Open the back door
  2. Remove three screws from the left side film canister area
  3. Remove two screws from the right side film take up area
  4. Remove one screw on the bottom of the camera to the right
  5. On the top of the camera flip the film rewind handle open, and remove one screw
  6. Gently flex the camera case and slide it off
The only bit that seemed to fall out was a film canister holder piece; set it aside. When you reassemble the camera after putting the case back on you can slide the film canister holder piece through the film rewind handle hole.