|Agfa, Billy-Clack Nr. 74, 120 roll film camera, c1934|
The Agfa Billy Clack is an inexpensive fixed focus folding camera with Art Deco styling influences. Agfa had been around in one form or another since 1867 and the camera product range was aimed largely at the mass amateur market. As a result the cameras often mirror those of it's larger competitor, Kodak. The Agfa Billy-Clack, is the equivalent of the Kodak Jiffy, both in performance, appearance and, to a degree, construction. Even the scissor strut folding mechanism is similar. Agfa cameras are often slightly more refined than the direct competition and Billy Clack is cleverly designed to be easily and rapidly assembled, as were a lot of the cheaper cameras. Construction being mainly of thin pressed metal, the entire shutter mechanism just drops in the front and is held in by the front plate. There is a built in yellow filter (that fades with age) to increase the contrast between sky and clouds, three waterhouse stops (11, 16, 22) but focus is fixed. A neat blind sweeps across the shutter to help keep the camera light tight as the camera is closed. It also featured a "sportsfinder", a simple folding viewer to aim the camera when taking pictures of moving subjects. Attempting to use the waistlevel viewers for this is a frustrating exercise as they are tiny and the image reversed. This example was donated in 2003.
Shutter, Agfa T & I
Lens, Bilinar 105mm f/11
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