The London Four

I recently took a weekend trip to London and decided to see what I could find in the way of British cameras. Happily, hours spent at the Portobello Road Market were not in vain as I came away with four interesting cameras, three of which can be considered British.

Houghton Ensign Cupid

This was the camera that first caught my eye in one of the stalls at the Portobello Road Market. With what quick research I had done before leaving the States, I knew what it was.

Houghton Ensign Cupid.

Unfortunately, though this example is in good working order, it is missing the clip-on bright finder. If anyone has a lead on one of these, please let me know.

MakeEnsign (Houghton)
ModelCupid
Year1922
Format120 (4x6cm)
Shutterguillotine
SpeedI, T
Lensmeniscus
 ~f14 ~70mm
Focusfixed
Aperture~f14
Light MeterNo
RangefinderNo

Hunter Purma Plus

Hunter Purma Plus. This example has the screw on cap to contain the spring loaded lens.

This Purma Plus is rough, there is no getting around that. However, for the price I felt it was well worth it. Many of my cameras are not pretty, but they work. I love that you adjust the shutter speed with gravity. Depending on how you orient the camera the speeds are 1/25, 1/150, and 1/500.

The Purma appears to be in excellent mechanical order for its age and will not take much to get it in fine working condition.

MakeHunter
ModelPurma Plus
Year1952
Format127
Shutterguillotine
Speed25, 150, 500
LensPurma Anastigmat
 f6.3 55mm
Focus1ft – ∞
Aperturef6.3 (fixed)
Light MeterNo
RangefinderNo

Ica Bébé 41

Ica, Ica, Bébé… can’t touch this. Photo Time! I found this camera at the same stall as the Houghton Ensign Cupid. Besides the obvious design characteristics, what stood out to me is the removable 120 roll back.

ICA Bebe
MakeICA
ModelBébé 41
Year1911-1925
Format120 (originally plate)
ShutterCompur
SpeedB,M,Z,1, 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, 200
LensCarl Zeiss Jena Tessar
 f4.5 120mm
Focus2ft – ∞
Aperturef4.5 – 36
Light MeterNo
RangefinderNo

Kershaw Eight-20 Penguin

Kershaw Eight-20 Penguin. I love that this camera was originally sold a couple of miles from where I picked it up years later.
MakeKershaw
ModelEight-20 Penguin
Yearc1953
Format120
ShutterKershaw
SpeedB,I (1/50-1/60)
LensCarl Zeiss Jena Tessar
 f11 120mm
Focus6ft – ∞
Aperturef11, f16 (lever-selected)
Light MeterNo
RangefinderNo


Categories: 120 film, 127 film, Ensign, ICA, Kershaw, Plate Film, Purma

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

1 reply

  1. It’s nice to know such oldies still turn up – and that they haven’t all been lost to museums of the trash.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: