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Bolsey B, 35mm coupled rangefinder camera c1947

The Bolsey B is a post WW2 US camera expertly made using aluminium castings. Bolsey cameras adopt the name of their designer, Jaques Bolsey, who had previously worked at Alpa in Switzerland on cameras destined for the pricier end of the market. No such pretentions from the cameras designed after his move to the US, firmly aimed at the amateur. A rescue job this one! Acquired in November 2000, in less than perfect condition. The shutter was dead, rangefinder broken and the focus barrel seized solid with salt corrosion. It's a curious mixture, the aluminium castings are very nice and the design is delightful and simple throughout. The bought-in shutter mechanism is, in contrast, primitive - the mechanics roughly equating to any basic shutter found in any number of cameras in the 1920s. The finish on the aluminium shells was so well done that initially it was thought they were plated. As new the polished aluminium was protected by a layer of lacquer, most Bolseys exhibit a few scratches that allow the aluminium to dull. My thanks go to the London and Brighton plating co. for repolishing the shells to their original deep shine. Finally re-assembled in August 2001 complete with a new Bolsey badge located in Canada. The collection also has a B2 derivative.

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Bolsey B, 35mm coupled rangefinder camera c1947
Body No.24311
Shutter, Wollensak, speeds T, B, 10, 25, 50, 100 & 200th
Lens, Anastigmat 44mm f/3.2
Condition, 5F

 

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