Short time-scale photometric properties of eight faint cataclysmic variable (CV) stars are presented. Nova Carinae 1895 (RS Car) has a photometric modulation at 1.977 h that could be either an orbital or a superhump period. Nova Carinae 1948 (V365 Car) shows flickering, but any orbital modulation has a period in excess of 6 h. The nova-like variable and X-ray source V436 Car has an orbital modulation at Porb= 4.207 h, no detectable period near 2.67 h (which had previously given it a possible intermediate polar classification), and dwarf nova oscillations (DNOs) at ∼40 s. Nova Crucis 1936 (AP Cru) has a double-humped ellipsoidal modulation at Porb= 5.12 h and a stable modulation at 1837 s characteristic of an intermediate polar. Nova Chamaeleontis 1953 (RR Cha) is an eclipsing system with Porb= 3.362 h , but at times shows negative superhumps at 3.271 h and positive superhumps at 3.466 h. In addition it has a stable period at 1950 s, characteristic of an intermediate polar. BI Ori is a dwarf nova that we observed at quiescence and outburst without detecting any orbital modulation. CM Phe is a nova-like variable for which we confirm the value of Porb= 6.454 h found by Hoard, Wachter & Kim-Quijano). We have identified the remnant of Nova Sagittarii 1931 (V522 Sgr) with a flickering source ∼2.2 mag fainter than the previously proposed candidate (which we find to be non-variable).