Advice please on 6x9 folder

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by dustym, Feb 4, 2007.

  1. dustym

    dustym Member

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    Could forum members please advise on the best in thier opinion the best 6x9 folder that would fit a reasonable budget. Question asked on behalf of my Dad

    rgds
    Dustym
     
  2. Petzi

    Petzi Member

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    Voigtländer?
     
  3. dustym

    dustym Member

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    Any model name ?

    rgds
     
  4. P C Headland

    P C Headland Subscriber

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    A Zeiss Ikonta 524/2 with the Novar lens is a good start. They are very nicely made, have an uncoupled rangefinder and handle nicely.

    So, why the Novar lens and not the Tessar? Price - with the Novar you are not competing against collectors, and at most working apertures you are unlikely to see the difference.
     
  5. Richard Kelham

    Richard Kelham Member

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    Ensign Selfix 820 with 105mm Ross Xpress lens (probably in Epsilon shutter). Late examples can get quite pricey so shop around. Zeiss Ikonta (of course) and Voightländer Bessa are also good.

    Even the old Agiflex wasn't that bad.


    Richard
     
  6. pschauss

    pschauss Member

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    I have a Mockva 2 and a Mockva 5 which are said to be Russian copies of the Super Ikonta. Both required effort to adjust the lens focus calibration and patch a few light leaks in the bellows but I get good results from them now.
     
  7. Petzi

    Petzi Member

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    Bessa!
     
  8. Chazzy

    Chazzy Member

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    Ercona IIs with Tessars don't go for much on eBay, but they don't have coupled rangefinders, if you think you need one.
     
  9. Mike Té

    Mike Té Member

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  10. dustym

    dustym Member

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  11. elekm

    elekm Member

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    I would recommend a Zeiss Ikon 520/2 Ikonta with a Tessar lens. These can be had for between $30 and $75.

    If you want something cheaper, you can find one with the Novar lens.

    The 520/2 is a zone-focus camera.

    A step up would be the rangefinder-equipped 530/2 or 531/2 and generally a big jump in price to more than $200 and up to $400 or more.

    If you don't mind respooling, you could consider a Nagel Vollenda 620 -- the 6x9 version or one of the many Kodak 6x9 folding cameras.

    Prewar cameras will have uncoated lenses and most -- but not all -- postwar cameras will have coated lenses.

    I forgot my standard line: Almost all of these cameras probably should be serviced. Common problems are gummed-up shutters, dirty viewfinders and focusing helicals that need to be cleaned and re-lubricated, and you should always check that the bellows are light tight.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2007
  12. Alex Hawley

    Alex Hawley Member

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    I can speak favorably for the Voightlander Bessa 1. The one I got recently does very well.
     
  13. sienarot

    sienarot Member

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    I just ordered a 6x9 folder myself from Jurgen (www.certo6.com) on Friday.

    I've been wanting to shoot something in 6x9 format for a while, but always though the folders of that vintage were expensive for some reason (and the Fuji 690 RFs are no bargain either). I was at a photog meet last weekend and a friend brought his newly acquired AGFA Billy Record II and told me how cheap he got it for from certo6, after which I spent the better part of last week corresponding with Jurgen and narrowing down my pick.

    Seeing firsthand the quality of his work, it's really hard to turn elsewhere, especially considering how reasonable his prices are and the fact that all cameras are CLA'd before being sold. The folder my friend had looked practically brand new and even had a new bellows put on it (you can still smell the glue on it, if that's your thing! :smile: ) Jurgen says that cameras that aren't in excellent condition, given their age, become parts cameras.

    I had narrowed it down to three, but it was a really tough choice:

    1) AGFA Billy Record II or III - Seeing my friend's firsthand, I knew what to expect in terms of quality. Plus all the AGFAs get new bellows, your choice of colour.

    2) Moskva 5 - Sort of Holga-esque quality to it, but in 6x9. There's some really neat photos taken with this camera on Flickr. The copy he has is in almost perfect condition and I was given the option of buying it before he put it on 'that big auction site', where it is currently posted.

    3) Voigtlander Bessa I - I've read good things about the quality of this folder. Plus it's a freakin' Voigtlander! I ended up going with this one.

    As tmike says, check out www.certo6.com. He's got more information on there than you'll ever need to make your decision.

    I'm really eager to get my Bessa I!
     
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  15. Rolleiflexible

    Rolleiflexible Restricted Access

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    Another vote for Jurgen Krekel at certo6.com -- a class act with first-rate reconditioned folders and fair prices.

    My Melanie swears by her Agfa Record III. She pulls amazing images out of it. Hers has the cheaper ut still very good Apotar lens. I doubt that the pricier Solinar would add much to the image.

    Sanders
     
  16. Buster6X6

    Buster6X6 Member

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    I bought my Bessa from Jurgen last fall and I love it. Inexpensive and the negatives are as sharp as when I shoot with my Blad ( color Skopar lens). Very easy to carry around no mirror shake. This forum recommended it and I love it.

    Cheers Greg
     
  17. Chazzy

    Chazzy Member

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    He has an Ercona I with Tessar on eBay, or at least he did the last time that I looked.
     
  18. Robert Oliver

    Robert Oliver Member

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    I've got a cool old voigtlander berheil.
     
  19. MattCarey

    MattCarey Member

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    Not what I see in my Mockba. Nice camera. Not as sharp as, say, my 105mm Ektar on my mini-speed, but good enough for most things.

    Matt
     
  20. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member

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    The Bergheil is likely to be a 6.5x9cm plate camera, not a 6x9 rollfilm camera. But I agree - they're nice. Especially with the 120mm Heliar lens... :smile:
     
  21. Dan Fromm

    Dan Fromm Member

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    Um, if it doesn't have to fit in a pants pocket then consider a 2x3 press camera. As for example the unjustly despised Century Graphic. Press cameras offer better rigidity and are more durable than any of the pocketable folders, also allow interchangeable lenses.
     
  22. DougGrosjean

    DougGrosjean Member

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    Where do you get film for the old 2x3 press cameras?

    Agreed that press cameras can be a blast. Just bought a 4x5 Burke & James press camera around the New Year, and am pleased with it. Am enjoying shooting a few shots and then processing them, instead of having to finish an entire roll.
     
  23. Solinar

    Solinar Member

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    A 6x9 folder may fit into the pockets of some cargo pants, but I predict it will make for a gimpy walk.

    Folders are like 57 Chevrolet Bel-Aires, unrestored examples run the gamet from mostly unusable to useable, but with hiccups. Find an already restored example or be ready for longish wait along with a hefty repair bill.

    Personally, Im very happy with my two Agfa Records, a Billy II and a Record III. I actually prefer the look that I get with my 3 element Apotar on the Billy II over the reputedly better Solinar that is a Tessar copy. I can easily fit one and its accessories into a slim 10" by 10" satchel along with a Leica fitted with a collapsible lens.

    So long as they have new bellows installed, Agfa are good shooters. The self erecting front standards on the Agfas lock down solidly and there is no wobble as on some Voigtlanders I've handled. I do have a 6x6 Voigtlander Perkeo II and will probably never part with it.

    On the Record III, it has a key hole viewfinder and a not so smooth shutter release. To improve composition fit a Leitz 5cm bright-line finder in the accessory shoe and only use the built-in window when using the RF apparatus. A well made soft touch button threaded on to the shutter release will make using 1/50th of a second more managaeable.

    Good luck and happy shooting.
     
  24. DBP

    DBP Member

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    The only complaint I have ever had about my Moskva 5 is the whole hand reversal thing, which I find confusing for some reason (on Exakta's too, but they are easier to hold). But the quality of the pics is pretty impressive. The only Agfa's I have used have been 6x6, but the bodies are pretty well built.

    As for the Mini-Graphics, J&C was still carrying 2x3 sheet film, and presumably will again. Also, the later models can take roll film holders in a Graflok back. But no press camera is pocketable.
     
  25. Solinar

    Solinar Member

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    Maybe Dad will get ultra lucky and get a Horseman with a rotating 6x9 back.
     
  26. Dan Fromm

    Dan Fromm Member

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    120 film in a roll holder. I have Graflex brand to fit Graflok backs (good reason to get a Graphic with a Graflok instead of one of the competitors with a spring back) and Adapt-A-Roll 620s (slip in like sheet film holders, can feed from a 120 spool but MUST take up on a 620 spool, the reason why buying a press camera with a spring back doesn't have to be a bad mistake).

    That's where I get film for my old 2x3 press cameras.