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Vigorous Voigtlanders!

Discussion in 'Classic Models & Marques' started by gray1720, Sep 2, 2017.

  1. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    I recently picked these two little beauties up for £15 the pair at a car boot sale - the first I've been two in ages, and there were a good few camers on sale, some quite interesting, but space and cash were limited...

    This is a Vito II with a real quality feel - the heft of a Zenit at about a quarter of the size, it's tiny. Maybe Trip 35 sized?

    [​IMG]Voigtlander Vito II by gray1720, on Flickr

    But the one I got really excited about is the lovey pre-WW2 Bessa which set me back a whole plastic meat-laden fiver. The Bessa name was used for all manner of cameras and this isn't a particularly high spec one - no rangefinder for example - but it's got a rim-set Compur shutter going up to 1/250th and an f4.5 anastigmat lens which were both pretty decent by the standards of the day, and lots of lovely period ouches like the pop-up viewfinder under a cover to stop it getting snagged on your case. What has really got my gusset in a knot is the shutter release (I know - I need to get out more!). It's a little chrome trigger that pops out when you open the camera and it is perfectly placed and weighted for a really crisp action. No wobbling, no fumbling for it. Given that my other 1930s folders have shutter releases that were apparently added as afterthoughts, certainly they are deeply unergonomic, I think this is one of the nicest releases I've ever come across on ANY camera!

    [​IMG]Voigtlander Bessa by gray1720, on Flickr

    When I get a mo (ha ha!) I may have to do a proper write-up on this one!

    steveandthedogs likes this.
  2. steveandthedogs

    steveandthedogs Well-Known Member

    £15? Jammy beggar!

  3. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    That was my thought when I got the Vito, so I was well chuffed when I got the Bessa for a fiver - there was a chap with a number of nice cameras (Braun Paxette, Ricoh Auto 35 amongst them) but as he wanted £15 for a Retinette 1A I didn't ask the prices!

    It's a while sincce I've even been to a car boot, so I was quite surprised by the number of older cameras at this one - mostly somewhat ratty, but with at least a couple of gems!

  4. SXH

    SXH Well-Known Member

    A "lovey pre-WW2 Bessa", eh? SO, which famous actor previously owned it? ;)

    Why are other people's typos so much more interesting than mine, eh?
  5. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    Argh, what's annoying is my spelling is good it's just my triping that's rubbish!

    steveandthedogs and SXH like this.
  6. Malcolm_Stewart

    Malcolm_Stewart Well-Known Member

    I've had a Vito II (50mm F/3.5 Color Skopar) since about 1960 which I bought from R G Lewis in Cambridge for £12 - always assuming that my memory is correct. A week later I bought the Leitz 5cm bright-line viewfinder from the same shop, and I'm convinced that the two items had been together when the Vito was traded in - my Vito II had the push-on accessory shoe which took the viewfinder, and made the Vito usable. Great little camera, with a decent lens covering the width of the negative.
  7. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    Ah yes, my other Vito II has that push on shoe - makes rather a mess of the top plate!


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