FS 9" portrait petzval
This is a 9" focal length, f3.8 portrait petzval, labelled Seroco. Seroco was one of store brand names used by SEars ROebuck COmpany back when Sears was the undisputed King of Retail. Sears credit cards used to be the most widely carried card in America, and the most likely first credit a person ever received, and before the internet, the Sears Wishbook arriving at the end of August with all the new Christmas toys listed, was the highlight of a kid's year. How could even Santa compete with those 200-300 pages of color photos? It surely beat the lump of coal I knew I was going to get...
The lens is about 5" high, and the lens shade adds another inch or so. About 3" wide at the threads. Weighs 919g. Glass is about 60mm in diameter. Some separation around the rim of the front lens, maybe 1mm, but not enough to affect your photos. Front and rear unscrew easily for cleaning. There might be a pinpoint sized chip on the rear glass. It darkens the corners of 8x10 at infinity, so would be perfect for 8x10 portraits and would probably maximize the swirls although I've been successfully using it for portraits with whole plate film. No flange is included. The brass shows tarnish but the other metal is excellent. The focus wheel works smoothly and has all 4 screws. It is cut for waterhouse stops but none are included. The edge of the front lens isn't marked, and no manufacturer is marked, but I suspect it was made by Bausch & Lomb in the US.
The lens is marked for 1/2 plate (approx 4x6), but back then, the lens was rated for the plate size it was totally sharp covering, and modern photographers are actually exploiting the faults of the lens beyond those rated sizes.
I've been using this lens lately with whole plate (8 1/2" x 6 1/2") and love it. I've gotten some very nice portraits of my grandkids with it. This past weekend, I took shots of the kids in front of a window with a white curtain and sun coming from outside, and printed the shots on some Centennial POP I still have, and the results, while definitely my normal mediocre work, were very Julia Margaret Cameron-esque.
There is a perfectly hideous lens cap for the front made from a canning jar top, neon green masking tape and black flocked paper on the inside, which is included. It is ugly, but it is a nice fit and slides easily on and off to take photos if you aren't using a packard shutter.
$350 shipped in the USA via USPS priority, insured. Knock off $20 if you've bought a lens from me before. I prefer USPS money orders but will take Paypal sent as a gift or if you pay the fees (around 4% of the total). In Australia, I can also take direct deposit.
Yes, I'll ship overseas. You can check your shipping at USPS.com and the rates for a medium flat rate box to your country, including $350 insurance.
I'm going to lower this to $300 shipped and if no one grabs it at that, it will probably stay where it is on my camera for a while longer. Here's a proof on expired Centennial POP of a neg from this lens. The artifacts like scratches are from my ultra-deluxe Walmart high quality $39 scanner/printer/fax... % to APUG if it sells here. Cheers, Richard
Shots of the ground glass taken today to show the 'petzvalness' of this lens.
sold over on LFF.