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PostPosted: Sat Jun 28, 2008 3:17 pm 
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Das Kapital
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Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 4:03 pm
Posts: 6780
Location: Victoria BC
Camera: Canon 60D, Fuji XP20, odd film cameras
Lens: Tokina 11-16, Canon 17-55
Inspiration: The stuff out there.
OK to edit my images: Yes
I'm really too broke to be buying toys, but at $40 I just couldn't possibly pass this up (they go for $150+ on ebay in similar condition, so if I develop any remorse I'll turn it around for profit). I'm developing a weakness for these old cameras, especially these neat old folders.

This is just a picture the seller took of it, I'll do a nicer "product shot" of it later once I've cleaned it up:

Image

It's a 6x6 MF camera that takes 120 film, has a coupled rangefinder, and automatic-stopping film advance and frame-counter (none of this fiddling with a red window to read markings off the film's paper backing material nonsense). The lens is a coated 80mm f/2.8 tessar, which I added some minor coating marks to accidentally while cleaning it (ugh). They're pretty insignificant so it shouldn't be an issue. I have to clean some fog from inside the lens but once I figure out how to take the front element off it shouldn't be hard to do. The focus mechanism needs lubrication because it's a bit stiff, but the rangefinder is reasonably bright and accurate. Shutter sounds dead-on to me and bellows is good. It's a big, heavy camera - by volume and weight it's similar size to my 9x12cm voigtlander avus, but of course it's flatter and squarer. Solid as rocks; this horizontal design with the bed dropping out downwards instead of to the side is pretty much the most solid of the medium format folding cameras.

The rangefinder mechanism is really weird; there's a lens system on the front lens standard (that round window above and off to the side of the taking lens). Elements inside it get moved around when you focus the main lens, and this is read somehow by the rangefinder window on the camera body (a tiny square just above the bellows), and translated into an alignment in the viewfinder window's rangefinder spot. I don't know how it works exactly but it's pretty neat - no mechanical coupling to a mirror or something in the body like you might find on a Leica or Contax-style 35mm rangefinder.

The slightly-ugly square on the top is a selenium-cell meter with a metal door over the front, but it doesn't work (common with this kind of meter on old cameras). The meter isn't coupled to the lens anyway, it just lets you read a little needle to figure out your exposure.

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The meaning of life is simple: we exist to use our senses and consciousness to appreciate a universe that might otherwise go unappreciated in its eons of vast silence.

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