Vintage and Classic Cameras
Camera Anatomy - Box Cameras

The principle feature of a box camera is,'s a box! The front will have an opening with a lens and a shutter, which may be in front or behind the lens itself. These are generally the simplest and cheapest of cameras and most had few controls. The Ensign E29 used to illustrate the breed here has a simple rotary shutter in front of the lens. Controls are limited to Instant shutter (roughly 1/25th sec) or Timed shutter which stays open for as long as the lever is held down. Most box cameras are roll film type without any focus control as the lens delivers reasonably sharp pictures from 12ft to infinity, which covers most peoples' requirements. For those occasions when a closer focus is needed a supplementary lens could be fitted (as here in fact) and this would alter the focus according to the strength of the supplementary lens used. Whilst the E29 is representative of this type of camera, there are variations.

Visit these examples to see some of the variations.

Ensign E29, Kodak Hawkeye, Zeiss Ikon Box Tengor.

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Camera Anatomy - Box Cameras


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