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  1. #1

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    Hello I am new and in need of help

    I don't know anything about cameras but I have come across a camera that has peeked my interest but I don't know very much about it. What I do know is that it's a Universal Junior View Camera by Agfa-Ansco. It's got a Wollensak Raptar 127mm f/4.5 lens. Can anyone give me information on this camera. It belongs to my mother in law, it was her husband's before he pasted and I have seen some of the pictures it has taken and they are beautiful. They camera is in great condition, the lens as well is in great condition. I just not sure how to work it. My mother in law wants to sell it, I think she should wait and look into seeing if it still takes good pictures. Just neither one of us know how to use it.

  2. #2
    Whiteymorange's Avatar
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    Hi damamatigger
    Is this the camera you're talking about? If so, it's worth using and may be worth something to another user or even a collector, but it's going to be a bit of work to try it out. The page to which I referenced you says that it was only made for 3.25 x 4.25 inch film, a size that is hard to find and not terribly popular today. It is available here, and a few other places as well, but you may not want to commit that much of your cash to "see if it still takes good pictures" - especially if you don't have a darkroom set up to process the film.

    The camera is just a device to keep a lens and a piece of photo sensitive material a certain distance apart so that the light can be admitted in small, carefully measured doses. If the film holders are still with the camera and are in good shape, if the bellows (the cloth or leather part in the middle of the camera) is still light tight and if the shutter still works well, there is no doubt that camera will still take good pictures. The trick is to get someone who can work with it to check it out in person. You don't say where you're located but there may be a camera shop or even an APUG member near you who would be able to look at it and give you some advice.

  3. #3
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Agfa Ansco view cameras are well made and if as you say it's in good condition would still be a very usable camera, but as Whitey says film supplies that size are limited.

    For some reason Agfa Ansco's usually don't fetch high prices on Ebay, and that model has very limited movements which doesn't help when selling it. So it's not going to fetch much, so I'd keep it. They were $45 new in 1941.

    Ian

  4. #4

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    thank you for some advice

    The camera itself is in wonderful shape, the bellows are in great conditioner. The only thing I have found on it the does not look in working order is (pardon my ignorance) the shutter line, what ever that is, is broke off. I have 2 glass film holders, (again pardon my ignorance), the cartiridges that hold the film in the camera, they as well are in great condition. I am gonna learn this yet. I like this camera, I am trying not going to let her sell it. She has got one of the first Polariod as well. My father in law took great care with this camera and his shots were gorgeous, he knew what he was doing. I can't thank you enough for your help. And yes I have been to that website, for the camera and that is it only better condition. I live in Florida, St. Petersburg area. I don't know who works with cameras around here. Seem like everything is digital, or instant anymore. I like the old pictures, they capture something, I can't explain, but it's something wonderful, at least for me.

  5. #5
    Whiteymorange's Avatar
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    Good for you. You might want to learn a bit about shooting black and white photos by taking a class at some adult ed program in the area (assuming, of course, you are of the proper age for adult ed.) and going out and shooting some 35 mm film. The process isn't that much different with a large format camera like the Ansco, but the equipment can be a bit confusing at first. I'm in MA, so I won't be of much help to you, I'm afraid. Good luck.

  6. #6

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    Thank you for making me feel like a young lady. I turned 44 Tuesday the 22nd. I have looked into a couple of classes since trying to discover more about the camera and film. I may actually get to take a class if I get my ducks in a row and my 2 jobs and 3 kids taken care of. I have some photography classes at the college now far from me. I love black and white pictures, they can say more then color photos for me. I am hoping to do this camera justice. Mother in law is on the fence right now to sell the camera. I got it with me for the time being hoping to learn as much as possible to show her it won't get her much on the market as she might think. It is a good camera but the lens is not the orginial lens. So will see. I think at this point even if she does end up selling it, I think I am going to indulge in some classes and start my own investigation into cameras and pictures. I have had a new window interest for me. My kids are 19, 16, and 5, I think it's time for me to have some mommy time. I really have enjoyed talking with you about this and hope to continue, if you don't mind. So I may get advice from time to time.

  7. #7
    Whiteymorange's Avatar
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    This is a great place for advice. Keep asking questions and keep exploring options. Photography is a great way to re-learn the wonder of just plain looking.

  8. #8
    Gay Larson's Avatar
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    damamatigger, good luck with your adventure. I got very interestd in serious black and white photography when I was close to your age and my Father in law gave me a manual 35 mm camera. I started taking classes and was hooked forever. Now I have my own darkroom and a house full of cameras. You'll find lots of help here.
    Prints available in the APUG GAllery
    www.gaylarsonphotography.com

  9. #9

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    Looking for a camera shop to fix the camera. Mother in law not going to sale, but let me have since I want to try. She says her husband would have liked it still taking pictures of the kids and so forth

  10. #10
    Whiteymorange's Avatar
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    Hey! Good for you and good for your MIL. I have relatives who gave me things to thank for my interest in photography as well. Use it and she'll be happy as a clam.

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