Pre-Dagor Dagors?

Discussion in 'Antiques and Collecting' started by Struan Gray, Oct 21, 2005.

  1. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    I have a cute little 127mm Goerz Series III Doppel Anastigmat in barrel, and I have just bought a 480 mm version to fit on my winter project: my dormant 12x15" camera, which itself dates from the 1880s.

    I have been looking for information on the Goerz company, but very little seems to be available. The Goerz subsidiary in the USA, and the lenses produced after the merger with Zeiss-Icon in the twenties are well-documented, but the history of the parent company in Berlin is hard to get any concrete data on.

    I know that the Series III was patented 1892, released for sale 1893 and changed name to "Dagor" in 1904. That dates my lenses pretty well, but it would be nice to know some more about them and the company that made them, if only for personal interest. Does anyone have any pointers?
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I know that there's a bunch of new stuff just posted in the last week or two on the Camera Eccentric website. Might be worth checking there.

    Those ser. iii lenses often have more coverage than the later ones. I use the 168 ser. iii on 8x10" occasionally.
     
  3. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I've got another one of those, a CP Goerz Berlin Doppel-Anastigmat Serie III 180mm in a very nice brass barrel. It uses Stoltze aperture numbers, too... I'v onøy got as far as checking that it covers 5x7", but I'll put it on the huge Olga in a few days to see what the image circle looks like.
     
  4. laz

    laz Member

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    Ole, someday, when you have a few spare hours, how about listing for us all the lenses you own?

    (Hmmmm, we could ask Jim Gallie to do the same thing and have a 'lens-off'
    :smile:

     
  5. df cardwell

    df cardwell Subscriber

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    Well, I'll probably be too obvious here, but begin at the beginning: all errors are mine, all good data is from Kingslake, Schwalberg and others.

    We know D A G O R represents Double Anastigmat GOeRz.

    We know that a double anastigmat can be in several forms. Goerz made more than one form of double anastigmat. The other double anastigmat Series included an f/4.5 dialyte ( double anastigmat Goerz type B ) and and f/6.8 ( type C ).

    In 1904, Goerz renamed their lenses, thank goodness. The Series III Double Anastigmat Goerz became Dagor; Type B became Celor; Type C became Syntor. It was for more than convenience: everybody and their cousin was marketing Double Anastigmat lenses at the time.

    Series III is always the DAGOR we have in mind when we think DAGOR. All Dagors are Series III ( and all Series III are DAGORS ) which in the USA said Series III until post WW2, when the Gold Dot and Gold Ring Dagors came into existence to combat the marketing of war surplus Dagors, and various government contract Dagors ( some of which are among the worst lenses ever made, and are still, sadly, circulating in near mint condition on Ebay ). The Gold Dots and Gold Rings are simply Series III lenses, with coating, and cosmetic differences. The Kern made Schneider Dagors are American Optical Series III lenses. The last of the Kern lenses have less coverage due to the limitations of the Compur shutters.

    Goerz began business in the mid 1880s. ( give or take a few months ) and manufactured a range of lenses including landscape objectives, an aplanat called the Paraplanat, and a rapid rectilinear lens named Lynkeioscope, designed by Carl Moser. Goerz hired Emil von Hoegh in 1892, who had tried to get a job at Zeiss and failed. Von Hoegh happened to have a design in his pocket which he presented to his new employer: the 6 element double anastigmat. Moser died in 1892, and was succeeded as head designer by von Hoegh, who retired in 1902, and died in 1915. In the '20s, Goerz was one of many small forms who were amalgamated into the Zeiss combine.

    One of the early products of the Goerz company was a fine camera, designed by Ottomar Anschutz in 1884. The Goerz/Anshutz camera had a focal plane shutter, with a top speed of 1/1000 of a second. The ANGO was a real sweetheart of a camera, and Anshutz a remarkable man in his own right.

    http://www.victorian-cinema.net/anschutz.htm

    http://www.lilienthal-museum.de/olma/eba1894.htm

    Attached is a snap of Otto Lilienthal made by Anshutz in 1894, hopefully with a Dagor.
    .
     
  6. Charles Webb

    Charles Webb Member

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    df cardwell, Thank you for putting together this most informative post.
    I will let others more knowledgable about Dagor matters respond, however I do appreciate this information very much! Charlie......
     
  7. df cardwell

    df cardwell Subscriber

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    Thanks ! But I can't say too much for Kingslake, Schwalberg, and so on !


    d
     
  8. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    Thanks for the comments, especially df's, which has filled some holes in my knowledge. It would be nice to turn up a Goerz serial number list, but at least for the Series III things are pinned down to a single decade.

    So far as I know, the Hologon was also called 'Doppel Anastigmat'. Whether the use of the phrase was trying to trade on the good name of Zeiss, or whether it had just become a meaningless tag (like 'APO' today), probably went to the grave with the original designers.

    My little Series III is a cute lens in a curious barrel. Tiny compared to the other 120-130 lenses I have lying about, but no iris and a mounting thread that places the Waterhouse slot behind the mounting board. I don't use it (I have modern offerings, and the oldie has sentimental value) but the big one will make a nice normal lens for my ULF.

    Thanks again.
     
  9. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Just about everything was a "Doppel Anastigmat", an "Astigmat", or an "Aplanat" in those days. Those terms weren't protected like the "proper" names (Tessar, Protar, Dynar and so on). One of my finest old lenses is an "O. Simon Dresden Weitwinkel Anastigmat No. 3".

    A propos names: Many names were chosen to give the impression of being something they were not. The example in my collection is a Rodenstock Hemi-Anastigmat - nice lens, but absolutely not an anastigmat!

    And BTW: My Serie III has an iris :wink:

    Addendum: The Goerz Berlin lenses say "Serie III", not "Series III". Not to be confused with the infamous "Berlin Dagor".
     
  10. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    Thanks Ole. I was typing fast, but of course, anything that says 'doppel' instead of 'double' is likely to have 'Serie' instead of 'Series'.

    I picked the lens up this afternoon. A beauty, and a beast. Fairly compact for a 480mm f8, but all that brass and glass adds up to nearly 2kg. It will make a fitting normal front end to my Optemus, and it gives me the incentive to sort out my film holders.

    This one too has an iris (slightly wonky, but basically round) marked in what I assume are Stolz (Stoltz?) stops. The smallest stop is marked as something like '1400', which if it were a regular stop would be beyond even my tolerance for diffraction.
     
  11. vet173

    vet173 Member

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    I have a Berlin Dogmar. Is it indicative of wht I can expect out of it? John
     
  12. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    The Dogmar is a very different lens, even if that too is an anastigmat.

    It's been said that the "Berlin Dagors" (note: Not the same as the C P Goerz Berlin Dagor!) were inferior, being hastily assembled from unmatched optics to get them on the market quick. I don't know if that's true or not.
     
  13. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    I'm pretty sure Dogmars are dialytes, so you can think of them as early Artars. Uncoated, with eight glass-air surfaces, I'd expect a fair bit of flare and ghosting. Small-ish image circle too. That said, they were not budget lenses, and dialytes in general can be very sharp.

    The whole 'Berlin' thing looks confused but isn't really. Goerz were based in Berlin, and their lenses were marked "C.P. Goerz Berlin". They had a US subsidiary whose lenses were not marked 'Berlin' at all, but instead were labelled "C.P.Goerz Am.Opt.Co.". Then there were a bunch of lenses marked "Berlin Dagor" assembled by Burke and James in the USA from crates of lens elements carted off post WWII as war booty. These last ones are the ones that often turn out to be dogs. The first ones are, confusingly, often referred to as "Berlin Dagors".
     
  14. df cardwell

    df cardwell Subscriber

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    Dogmars are remarkably fine lenses. Extremely fine.
     
  15. vet173

    vet173 Member

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    Glad to hear that. Thanks John B
     
  16. phfitz

    phfitz Member

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    Hi there,

    C.P. Goerz Berlin was absorbed in the Zeiss/Ikon mergers in the 1920's. They tried selling Zeiss/Goerz Dagors for about 1 year but the brand loyalties clashed and they didn't sell well. Goerz Am. Opt. was started before wwI like Voightlander New York.

    "Then there were a bunch of lenses marked "Berlin Dagor" assembled by Burke and James in the USA from crates of lens elements carted off post WWII as war booty."

    Burke & James bought the old stock before wwII and were assembled in the U.S. but they did not flood the market with them and sold them for years. At least they didn't label them "Carl Meyer'.

    Schneider made some Dagors and some were built in Switzerland AND there was a third 'Goerz' company in U.S.A..

    The original Artars were called 'Celor', like Hurrell used for his portraits.

    Lynn Jones did a series of articles in "View Camera" magazine years ago that covered most of the history, sorry but I don't remember which issues.

    Curiouser and curiouser
     
  17. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    In my German photography book from 1910, the following Goerz lenses are mentioned:

    Porträt-Celor, f:3.5, in 15, 24 and 36cm.
    Porträt-Celor, f:4.5, in 36, 42, 48 and 60cm.
    Celor Serie Ib, f:4.5-5.5, in 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30, 36, 42 and 48cm.
    Celor Serie Ic, f:6.3, in 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24 and 27cm.
    Syntor Serie Id, f:6.8, in 12, 15, 18, 21cm.
    Doppelanastigmat Dagor Serie III, f:6.8-7.7, in 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30, 36, 42, 48 and 60cm.

    Pantar (Convertible/casket sets) Individual cells in 15, 18, 24, 30, 36, 42, 48cm. Max aperture f:6.3 with two equal cells, decreasing to f:9 depending on the combination.

    Lynkeioskope Serie C, f:6.3, in 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30, 36, 48, 60, 75, 90cm. This is listed as a "Porträt-Aplanat".
    Lynkeioskop Serie E, f:7.7, in 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30cm (Universal-Aplanat)
    Weitwinkel-Lynkeioskop Serie F, f:15, in 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24cm (Wide angle aplanat)

    Hypergon Serie X, f:22, in 6, 7.5, 9, 12, 15, 20cm. 135° image field with rotating star "aperture", 110° without.

    Artar f:9-12.5, in 30, 36, 42, 48, 60, 75, 90cm.
    Alethar Serie V, f:11, in 30, 36, 42, 48, 60, 75, 90, 120cm. These last two are repro lenses.
     
  18. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    phfitz: mea culpa. Thanks for the correction.

    Ole: could you just type in the rest of the book when you have the time? Ta very much.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2005
  19. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Might do, but then I'd do it in German! :tongue:
     
  20. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    Keine problem: gibt's gas.

    One way to wile away those long lonely hours on the rig....
     
  21. renes

    renes Member

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    Do you know if Goerz ever made shorter focal lenght of LYNKEIOSKOP?

    I have seen Goerz Extra Rapid-LYNKEIOSKOP Serie C, No.1 (I could not check the FL). No.1 suggests rather 6" than 9".
     
  22. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Lynkeioskop Serie C seems to have been made all the way to #000, or 60mm, according to Thiele. Herr Dr. Schmidt probably didn't mention those little lenses for non-serious photographers. He was very very adamant that no serious photographer would ever use anything smaller than 13x18cm plates, and even THAT was marginal! :D
     
  23. David Lindquist

    David Lindquist Subscriber

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    I know this is an old thread, but I just became aware of it. As far as I have been able to find, the notion that Zeiss made Dagors for only about a year after acquiring Goerz in 1926 originated with Lynn Jones's article some years ago in View Camera.. The following is evidence I've gathered to the contrary (I think I originally posted this on LargeFormat)

    "A 1933 Carl Zeiss catalogue on the "cameraeccentric" website lists the Dagor in several focal lengths, both the f/6.8 (the 36 cm is f/7.7) and the wider angle f/9 versions. (This catalogue also shows Zeiss offering the Hypergon.) See:
    http://www.cameraeccentric.com/html/info/zeiss_3.html
    And I have record of a "Carl Zeiss Jena Goerz-Dagor", 12.5 cm f/9 offered on ebay with a serial number 2,214,759. A Zeiss lens with this serial number would have been made in 1937.
    In fact the evidence is that Zeiss was still making Dagors even as late as 1940. A copy of a Popular Photography buying guide I have, dated May 1940, includes the Dagor in several focal lengths in the listings for Zeiss lenses.
    Kingslake, in _A History of the Photographic Lens_ indicates Zeiss acquired C.P. Goerz (Berlin) in 1926."

    And it looks like Hartmut Thiele's recent references on Carl Zeiss Jena show that Zeiss made Dagors even later than 1940. (Wish I'd taken German for my foreign language requirement, though that would have been nearly 50 years ago if I had.)
    David