Polaroid Big Swinger 3000

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The Polaroid Big Swinger 3000 was the first rigid plastic bodied packfilm instant camera, released in 1968 and made in the US. It has a T-bar strap used to hold and "swing" the camera during transport. It is also used to grip the camera during the pull stage of film development. It was sold for $24.95.

Exposure system

This camera was only capable of using black and white film with an ISO of 3000. Correct exposure was obtained by pinching and twisting the red shutter button knob. A checkerboard pattern in a red window is seen under the viewfinder. The word YES would appear when the exposure was correct.


There is no real way to focus the camera. In bright sun, as long as the subject is 2 ½ feet (0.76 m) away, the image is in focus.

Flash system

If the word YES does not appear or does not appear fully flash bulbs should be used. Clear AG-1 or blue AG-1B type bulbs can be used. When using a flash bulb do not use the red YES window. Use the distance scale on top of the front standard. Twist the combination red shutter button knob to move the distance scale to the correct length. For best results on most bulbs, 4 feet is recommended. There is a bulb release on the side of the body. Slide the bulb release upwards to release and turn the camera body upside down to remove the spent bulb.


This camera does not have a lens cover. To reduce tripping the shutter causing accidental film exposure, a lens cap is a good idea. Many kinds of plastic film caps from 35mm film canisters can fit over the lens securely.


  • Film type: Peel-apart 100-Series pack films in ISO 3000
  • Shutter: 1/200 sec
  • Flash: AG-1 or AG-1B flashbulbs
  • Power: 2x 1.5V AA batteries power the shutter and flash.