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edmund j. kowalski | profile | all galleries >> Galleries >> Leidolf Adams Camera in Sunset Hills tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Leidolf Adams Camera in Sunset Hills

Very uncommon model, made in Germany by Leidolf, possibly for USA distribution, with "Adams" name logo in front opening where one might expect to find secondary rangefinder window.
Simple viewfinder, no rangefinder incorporated. Focus manually set by estimation of distance. Focus range is 3 feet to infinity.
Loads normal 35 mm camera for standard 24 x 36 mm negative size.
Interchangeable lens mount of a unique design, in a Pronto four speed shutter, 1/25, 1/50. 1/100, 1/200, plus B.
Connector post for synchronized flash.
Mechanical self-timer.
Lens labeled "Leidolf Wetzlar Triplon 1:2.8 f = 5cm."
I would surmise early 1950s production date.

I found this camera in a large Kansas City area antique mall for a good price.
It was in full working order.
When I arrived that evening in Wichita at my hotel, I goofed badly when unloading the van, and the camera hit the pavement. It was well wrapped and there was no apparent external damage. However, there was internal damage, and the shutter cocking mechanism would no longer stay hooked up with film advance. It was self-triggering the release during the second stroke of its two stroke advance system.

I cleaned up the camera at home two weeks later, but did not get it fixed. Although I carefully studied the construction, I did not see an easy or sure way to get into the shutter chamber. Precision German engineering. Would have been easy enough to access that Pronto shutter had it not been for the unique changeable lens mount.
Camera was still firing prematurely during the second stroke of two stroke advance system.
So I decided to work with that, and run a test roll of film ignoring the normal shutter release, and using the film advance lever as my "shutter release," attempting to hold the camera steady while advancing and anticipating shutter runoff.
I shot a roll of Kodak 200 at the little nature preserve on Sappington Road near Sunset Hills, and on the Meramec River in the park maintained by City of Sunset Hills, Missouri.
The experiment sort of worked. About half the frames were sharp, but half were blurred due to movement during the stroke. Advance lever is of the "pull" type, you pull it from front to back twice to advance one frame.
Best of the images seen below.

Would be a nice capable little camera, if the mechanisms worked properly.

Please click on thumbnails to see enlarged.
All images are 2013 E.J.Kowalski.
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