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edmund j. kowalski | profile | all galleries >> Galleries >> WINPRO 35 and Meramec River 011110 tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

WINPRO 35 and Meramec River 011110

After a long period of bitterly cold weather conditions here in Eastern Missouri, on Monday January 11 the temperature finally creeped to slightly above the freezing mark.
To celebrate the occasion I went to check out the ice conditions on the Meramec River in Fenton, Missouri, and paid a visit to the old Gravois Road bridge. This bridge has been closed to vehicle traffic since that bridge in Minneapolis went down a year or two ago.

My Camera of the Hour was a WINPRO 35. This quirky little device was a Postwar product of a small company in Upstate New York that produced a few variations of the gray plastic wonder plus a small line of film materials, or so I am told. Their brief history ran from the late 1940s into the early 1950s.
This particular example features a fixed focus two element lens;
three waterhouse stops of approximately f:8, f:11, f:16;
a self-cocking rotating plate shutter with flywheel escapement that does a single speed of approximately 1/50 second;
and a flash synchronized system, which I could not get to work properly after disassembling the camera to clean the shutter, repair a defective aperture selector, and clean all surfaces of the optics.
The film advance and frame counter are of an original unique design.
The plastic used in casting the bodies was said to be indestructible.

I wanted to prove that this camera is not a mere toy.
For my river visit, I loaded it with ASA 100 Fujifilm.

The results were a pleasant surprise!
Images were sharper than expected. I think they are at their sharpest at middle distance, slightly less sharp at infinity, but that works well for most situations. Camera showed little or none of the distortions that "junk" camera users seem to favor.

Please click on thumbnails to see enlarged.
All images are 2010 E.J.Kowalski.
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