|Kodak Jiffy (series II), 620 roll film camera, c1937|
Kodak Jiffy, an Eastman Kodak (Rochester) built 620 roll film camera for eight 6 x 9cm negatives. The Jiffy is a budget camera but offering a little more control than a box camera. The lens has two position focus with the front element mounted in a screw barrel. Users exhibiting a little lateral thinking could calibrate the focus a little more precisely and make their own marks around the lens ring. Three waterhouse stops are supplied on a captive pull out strip, no indication of the size is marked but they calculate out at f/26, f/19 and f/14. Shutter speeds are limited to timed and instant. The Jiffy cameras all share a common design of catch to keep the back closed, whilst it succeeds at keeping the back tightly closed and is unlikely to open accidentally, it is subject to binding after a few years of inactivity. Consequently many are broken. This example spent a lifetime in Australia before being donated to the collection in April 2004 by Mrs. M. South. It was in sound but tatty condition and has emerged from the workshop after a deep clean and service. The shutter is mounted on a wooden chassis even though the rest of the camera is of metal construction. The self erecting mechanism is a favourite of mine and results in a very rapid, easy and rigid extension.
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For those film manufacturers that also made cameras, placing an advert inside your camera was an urge rarely resisted. Hidden away from the light these adverts remain as bright and vibrant as the day they were placed inside and are often in stark contrast to the dour exterior. Here is the the advert from inside this Kodak Jiffy, for the appropriate 620 roll film - and the reminder that 120 roll film will not fit. Whilst the film and backing paper are the same, the spool is not, 620 being sufficiently streamlined that the camera's film chambers will not accept 120 film.
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