Rolleiflex Automat - Antique and Vintage Cameras

Rolleiflex Automat

Double bayonet model

1939

Franke & Heidecke

Braunschweig

Germany

Image of Rolleiflex Automat

Lens:
f3.5, 7.5 cm Zeiss Tessar. Iris diaphragm to f22. Serial no. 2329507 (1938).

Shutter:
Compur Rapid, speeds 1 - 1/500, B. Delayed action.

Construction:
Leather covered metal body.

Format:
12, 6 x 6 cm exposures on 120 roll-film.

Focusing:
To 0.8 m.

Attributes:
Reflex viewing through second lens. Full-size ground glass focusing screen without condenser with cross hairs giving 25 squares. Focusing magnifier. Mirror in hood for eye-level operation.
Auto-stop on film advance, coupled to shutter.
Film advance tensions shutter and operates frame counter, resets to 0 when back is closed.

Serial Number:
997077 .

With:

  • Magnar telephoto attachment. c. 1939. Focus to 2.5 m, depth-of-field scale to f22. Tripod clamp. Lens cap and case marked F&H. Equivalent focal length of 300 mm. Serial no. 2450043.
  • Lens caps. Cable release by AGC.
  • Proxar 1 set, bayonet and push-on fitting, aluminium mounts. With leather case marked 'Rollei F&H'. Serial no. 614062, 619056.
  • Sport, pale yellow filter, bayonet mount. Serial no. 1024266. In leather pouch.
  • Gelb Hell, light yellow filter, bayonet mount. Serial no. 1018266.
  • Gelb-mittel, medium yellow filter, bayonet mount. Serial no. 1016150.
  • Hellgrun, light green filter, bayonet mount. Serial no. 1007270. In leather pouch.
  • Hellrot, light red filter, bayonet mount, in leather pouch. Serial no. 1047607.
  • Hellblau, light blue filter, bayonet mount. Serial no. 1019817.
  • Intrarot, infra red filter, bayonet mount, in pouch.
  • Lens hood, bayonet mount marked 'Rollei F&H'.
  • Extension focusing hood, in packet.
  • Plate back adapter, marked 'Automat'. Comprises: camera back, focusing screen, 3 plate holders with cut film adapters, paper bag for plate holder. Silver box.
  • Roll-film pressure slide. Late version without red window.
  • Rolleikin 1. Black crackle finish. Comprises: cassette holder, back, take-up spool, knob for feed spool, view-finder mask, film gate. With Instructions. Silver box.
  • Duto soft focus attachment No 1. Push fit. With plastic case, box, instructions.
  • Ever-ready case. English but marked 'Rolleiflex'.

The Automat was introduced in 1937 with a single bayonet on the taking lens. In 1939 a bayonet was added to the viewing lens. The Automat was the first Rollei to have completely automatic film loading; there was no requirement to use a red window to align the first exposure, a feeler in the camera detects the difference in thickness between the backing paper alone and with the film. It was also the camera in both look and operation that set the style of Rollei cameras. The price was around 31.15.0.

Early single bayonet models did not have a shutter release guard.

The Magnar is a telephoto attachment giving 4x magnification. In use, the Magnar is first attached to the viewing lens for composition then moved to the taking lens. The Magnar would be fixed to a tripod, it bayonets to the filter socket and a rotating ring then clamps the two together. A focus clamp is provided to prevent movement while the lens is moved from viewing to taking position. Some models have the depth-of-field scale to f32. The working aperture would be f16 or f22. The lens had very limited use not helped by the image on the screen being upside down.

References & Notes:
BP 497517/1938. BJA 1938, pp. 252, 647. BJA 1939, p. 635. Minit&Cine, 1938, p. 53. Minit&Cine, 1939, p. 137.

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