I need help to identify a camera
I have been given an old folder, a 6x9 - 120 roll film. The camera has a dial set Vario shutter - speeds 25-50-100-B-T has a Prima anastigmat lens 105mm f4.5 no. 37872. There is a glass angle finder which turns and a wire sports finder?If you pull the camera to the end of the track, there is a little lever on the right (from back of camera) which extends the lens, I presume for macro work. I just figured it out, the little lever is to focus the lens. There is an ivory scale on the left side with infinity, 5,3,2 meters and a pointer which moves with the front post.
Anyway, the guy told me I can have it if I can find out what it is. I did both a google and a yahoo for "prima lens"and got nothing relevant, at least that I could use. I think with that shutter it is most likely a german camera but could be anything. There are no other marks antwhere on the camera, including inside with belows open and closed. All the original leather is there as you can see the decorative border around the camera.
I'd appreciate any help, telling me what it is, a trail to follow, some else to talk to, whatever you can do. I'm waiting with bated (well not really, i turn blue when I do that) breath.
THnax in advance
This will be a tough one, since cameras of modest specification like yours are often disregarded by collectors and thus not documented. A further factor is that they were made in very similar form by numerous makers, in some cases in a deliberately anonymous form for sale by large dealers, department stores, etc. under their own name (for which purpose a decal or sticker would be applied and would then have had 70 years to fall off again!). The lever focusing will be the most distinguishing feature for identification. Best of luck in any case!
If the distance scale is in meters only, it's likely a European market camera, FWIW, also many US market cameras used 620 instead of 120. From the way you describe it, it sounds similar to my ICA plate camera. As David said, there were lots of cameras from various makers that are similar. ICA or Zeiss Icon are major names that come to mind for me, and I believe they OEM'd cameras for the private label market. Is it anything like this one?
I hope this helps
Well, if the lens' name is Primar, not Prima as you typed it, the camera's maker is probably Balda. Go recheck, then use Google to look for Balda cameras.
Hi, Barry, nope only thing looks the same on the two cameras is the shutter plate on both are round. The struts are different and there is no top mounted release,gotta trip the lever. The ends are round, not sharp cornered as that one is. It doesn't look like any of my ZIs. It has the same general body shape as my Agfas, but other than that is different.All my folders have the strut going from inside body to front of bed or at least as far as the lens/shutter standard, This one drops down almost inside the body. Looks a little like the struts on a Speed Graphic 2x3 I had. also the metal rails for the front standard move in and out on the bed.
Thanks, David, I'll need luck in this. But it is fun, I feel like Mike Hammer or Phillip Marlowe.
Dan, the lens name is as I said it is. Prima.I have checked several times to be sure it isn't primo, not that either. Nothing else I can think of, I'll get some pix this week and post them, that may help.
Thanks, all for being willing to help. I'll get back soon.
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Post a pic of it, Michael; it should twig someone's memory.
yes, definitely post a pic. heck, it's hard to figure out a camera from a written description. a photo could make it easier to solve this mystery.