Monday, February 4, 2013

Skeletons From The Closet - Super Ricohflex Twin Lens Reflex - My Featured Camera for February

Well, January's over, so my Pentax K1000 will get some rest. You'll be seeing the results from that camera in multiple posts over the next couple of weeks. Simply search for "skeleton" at the top of my blog to find all of the posts from this series.
This month's featured camera is a relatively new addition to my collection - the Super Ricohflex Twin Lens Reflex (TLR), made around 1956.
February's Featured Camera, the Super Ricohflex
If you're not familiar with TLR cameras, they have two lenses, the top one is for framing and focusing while you look vertically downward onto a ground glass screen. The bottom lens is the taking lens, which forms the image on the film. This camera uses 120 film, and makes a 2 1/4" square (big!) negative. This is a fully manual camera - no batteries anywhere. On the Super Ricohflex, focus is achieved by rotating the taking lens.
The standard Super uses a red-tinted window in the rear to let you know how far to wind the film - you see an exposure number on the film backing through the window. This works fine, unless you're shooting fast (high iso) film, which can lead to fogging of the film through the window. Mine has the optional auto-stop mechanism, which adds an exposure counter and controlled spacing of the images. This is a very nice addition to the camera. You can see it at the top left of the camera body above.
My Super Ricohflex has a Ricoh Anastigmat f3.5 80mm lens, which is a "normal" focal length for this size of negative. It has a three-bladed leaf shutter, with speeds ranging from 1/10 to 1/100 second, plus B. This is a limited range of shutter speeds, with 1/100 not being very fast. Not exactly a sports action camera. Mine also has a flash mounting shoe on the side, and a PC electrical connection for the flash.
I've only shot a single roll with this camera in the past. So, I know it works, but I'm not very familiar with it yet.
I've got a roll of Kodak Tmax 400 black and white film loaded and ready to go! Wish me luck with the Super Ricohflex!