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Showing posts from March, 2012

Ricohflex VIIs + Super Ricohflex

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Got these cameras because I was fascinated by the twin focusing gears and found the pictures taken by the triplet lens appealing. Essentially these two models share the same specs, the VIIs just a tad older.
VIIs ready for action
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Kodak Signet 35

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Tiny but hefty rangefinder camera that exudes quality. Built on a cast alloy chassis, it is equipped with a premium four element Ektar 44mm, f3.5 lens that can focus (through a ball bearing driven helix) down to 22 inches. Set on a Synchro 300 leaf shutter with rather limited speeds B, 25, 50, 100 and 300, this shutter has a reputation for being unreliable. Perhaps I belong to the fortunate few who acquired a sample with a functioning shutter. ;) The camera has a double exposure prevention mechanism but the shutter has to be manually cocked. When I received the camera, the combined VF/RF was a bit cloudy. But this was easy to clean. Access is through the removal of the top plate - undo the set screws for the wind and rewind knobs and the top comes off. After cleaning, the bluish tinted VF offered bright contrast with the yellow tinged triangular split image RF.


This Ektar lens seem capable of giving the Leitz Elmar 50/3.5 a run for the money. The simple handling of this camera remind…

Found Film - Verichrome Pan 120

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To the left is a sealed VP120 expired in Dec. 1967 - to be kept for posterity. On the right is an exposed roll I stand developed in Rodinal 1:100 for 60 minutes. These came in a box of old cameras and expired film. The roll produced seven frames on a single subject. It seems like the person was bracketing exposure and this was the only one with a hand in the frame which I found, made it just a tad more interesting. It is still not as exciting as found film articles I've seen in the internet. However now I know why long time photo aficionados lament the demise of Verichrome Pan, I would have loved to shoot with this emulsion. It reminds me somewhat of Plus X, but with richer tonality.

Kodak Retina II

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Late 40s type 014, the lens scale is metric so it is a European version  Made by Kodak AG in Stuttgart, equipped with a coated Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon 50mm, f2 lens in a Compur Rapid shutter - B, T 1-1/500. Knob wind and manual shutter cocking but equipped with double exposure prevention mechanism. Well designed, built to high standards and very compact. The combined VF/RF moves to compensate for parallax, just wish it was brighter.

The look of this lens reminds me of an early 50s Leitz Summitar. more pics

Flexaret IIa

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Made by Meopta in the early 50s in Czechoslovakia. Prontor SV shutter - T, B, 1-1/300, Mirar II 80mm, f3.5 lens, a four element Tessar formula.  Initially the 1-1/10 shutter speeds were not functioning but was brought back to life by a dose of Naphtha, judicious use of a blower + shutter exercise. Basic TLR - red window frame counter + manual shutter cocking = no double exposure prevention. The viewfinder is not as bright as the Fresnel equipped Yashica-Mat but comparable to the Rolleicord III. A very capable picture taker.
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