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View Full Version : Trying to identify this old box camera.



DannL
05-22-2009, 06:37 PM
Just curious if anyone could positively ID this box camera. The camera uses plate holders that will accomodate 4x5 plates. The camera measures 5.5"W x 8"L x 7"H. The shutter is two speed, and the iris has three settings. The brass knob on the front primes the shutter, and the "I" and "T" push levers trip the shutter. "I" being instantaneous and "T" being timed. The camera makes excellent exposures on ISO 100 sheet film.

The plate holders are all labeled as Rochester Camera and Supply Co., Rochester NY; Pat May 10th 1898. But of course that doesn't mean the holders and the camera were purchased at the same time, or made by the same company.

Thanks yall!

Dann

athanasius80
05-25-2009, 09:29 PM
Well if the holders are original, than the camera is a Poco and its from before 1899 when Rochester Camera and supply (Poco) was absorbed by Rochester Optical (Premo) and both were absorbed by Kodak in 1903. Camerapedia to the rescue!

jnanian
05-25-2009, 09:50 PM
also check out boxcameras.com.
that is a SWEET camera!
i have a delmar, which has and I setting ( 50th ? ) and a B setting
and takes plates ... i use it with film since it will take a 4x5 film holder

DannL
05-25-2009, 10:21 PM
Well if the holders are original, than the camera is a Poco and its from before 1899 when Rochester Camera and supply (Poco) was absorbed by Rochester Optical (Premo) and both were absorbed by Kodak in 1903. Camerapedia to the rescue!


I suppose it is possible, but I have never found this camera as part of any Rochester Camera advertisement or catalog entry. Can you could point me to any tib-bit of information that might confirm this information that would be great.

I tried Boxcameras.com to no avail.

Dann


also check out boxcameras.com.
that is a SWEET camera!
i have a delmar, which has and I setting ( 50th ? ) and a B setting
and takes plates ... i use it with film since it will take a 4x5 film holder

I like this much better than the falling-plate camera. Although, that is also an amazing machine. I'm using it for making 4x5 contact prints, which look great considering the camera is made from a dead tree and covered with the skin from a dead cow. http://www.angelfire.com/az/moocows/images/cows.wav

The Delmar looks like a Cyclone in the front, doesn't it?



.

DannL
05-25-2009, 11:59 PM
Update: I found some info in the 1897 Sears Catalog for a camera called "The Gem" 3.25x4.25 dry-plate. That's all it said, perty generic . I followed that lead to find a similar camera by Rochester called "The Gem Poco". Very similar except for several items . . . my camera has rectangle view finders (not round) and a variable speed shutter. But, I think we're on the right track.

jnanian
05-26-2009, 08:50 AM
I suppose it is possible, but I have never found this camera as part of any Rochester Camera advertisement or catalog entry. Can you could point me to any tib-bit of information that might confirm this information that would be great.

I tried Boxcameras.com to no avail.

Dann



I like this much better than the falling-plate camera. Although, that is also an amazing machine. I'm using it for making 4x5 contact prints, which look great considering the camera is made from a dead tree and covered with the skin from a dead cow. http://www.angelfire.com/az/moocows/images/cows.wav

The Delmar looks like a Cyclone in the front, doesn't it?



.

hi dannl

you might email the guy who runs boxcameras.com
and ask him what he thinks it is. he's a nice guy ...
it sounds from your research it probably is a poco but who know...
there weren't a ton of cameras with a variable shutter speed mechanism
i had a falling plate camera once with one, it was something-else!

the delmar is pretty simple, and looks like the cyclone
just a push on the side to trigger the shutter and
a 2 position dial on the front ... milk glass on the top and side
... and a back end just like yours for storage and the clips
for the holders.
i used to use a polaroid 545 back in mine too ;)

john

DannL
05-26-2009, 10:27 AM
you might email the guy who runs boxcameras.com
and ask him what he thinks it is. he's a nice guy ...
it sounds from your research it probably is a poco but who know...
there weren't a ton of cameras with a variable shutter speed mechanism
i had a falling plate camera once with one, it was something-else!

the delmar is pretty simple, and looks like the cyclone
just a push on the side to trigger the shutter and
a 2 position dial on the front ... milk glass on the top and side
... and a back end just like yours for storage and the clips
for the holders.
i used to use a polaroid 545 back in mine too ;)

john

I'll send him an email, for sure. If it were a Rochester I would have thought there would have been some identifying mark. The Western Magazine falling plate camera is identified on top with a round ivory seal.

I find it amazing still that one of my best family snapshots was taken with a falling plate camera in the fall of 2008. I think several things helped to make the photograph what it is. Firstly, I inserted the film into the plate holder directly. The holder is metal and a silver/grey colour. It must have added a certain amount of halation to the overall exposure. I haven't had a picture like that since I started using a black backing material in the holders. And secondly the picture was taken by squatting down and placing the camera on my knee to keep it stable. The low angle of attack made the image.

I have Adapt-a-Roll 620 6x9 roll film adapter that might fit in the 4x5 box camera. Since the viefinders only cover about 40% of the actual view, the 6x9 might actual work.

I can't believe they deleted the sound file link above. Geeeez. Here's another. Just picture Betsy standing in a grassy lot behind the camera factory as another piece of leather is extracted with precision.
http://www.tradebit.com/filedetail.php/1893969-cow-collection-sound-effect-wav

mrred
05-26-2009, 10:46 AM
As an observation, I thing that it is fantastic to see the history actually still being used. Some of my friends look at my "junk" and do not realize that I do use it all. I am not an antique collector, I just love things that work.

EASmithV
05-26-2009, 07:06 PM
Box-O-Matic 1000