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Houghton Vest Pocket Ensign, folding strut braced camera. c1926

The Vest ocket Ensign, made from folded aluminium, The Houghton-Butcher manufacturing Co.Ltd, is stamped into the front of this pretty little 127 roll film camera. The merger of Houghtons and Butchers took place in January 1926. The sales umbrella name Ensign was adopted in 1930, and all qualifying cameras in the collection are listed as Ensign after this date. This particular camera was donated to the collection by Mrs. B. Pope in 1985, it had originally been her Grandfather's. The strut bracing eliminates the problems that arise when the lens board flexes back under the strain of the leather bellows, that would otherwise result in inconsistent focus across the negative. Contemporary with it's Kodak Vest Pocket equivalent, also to be seen in the collection.

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Houghton Vest Pocket Ensign, folding strut braced camera.       c1926
Body No.2679
Shutter, Simple two blade, speeds T, B, 20, 40, 60th
Lens f/11
Condition, 4G


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The strut braced folding mechanism as fitted to Houghton's Vest Pocket Ensign, introduced in 1923. The user simply pulls the lensboard foward to the end of its travel, making sure the lenboard snaps into each of the four locating slots. Closing the camera requires that the struts are sprung out of their slots before collapsing the mechanism to stow it inside the body. The strut braced arrangement was cheap and easy to manufacture, ensuring many of this and close relatives were produced.

 

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