Oxford Automan - Antique and Vintage Cameras

Oxford Automan

1902

Thornton-Pickard Manufacturing Co.

Altrincham

England

Image of Oxford Automan

Shutter:
Thornton-Pickard Iris shutter, two-blade pivoted return. Speeds 1 - 1/50, T.

Construction:
Leather covered wood body, leather bellows.

Format:
3 " x 4 " plates held in dark-slides.

Focusing:
Bellows, double extension, scale to 6 feet.

Attributes:
Brilliant view-finder. Self-erecting front. Spring back.

Movements:
Rising front.

Notes:
Retailer's plaque: Westminster Photographic Exchange. 119 Victoria St. London. S. W.

The Focal Plane Automan appeared in 1901 and was one of the first self-erecting folding cameras. Later that year or early in 1902 the Oxford Automan and Roll-film Automan were placed on sale. The Oxford was a normal 'Hand and Stand' camera except for the self-erecting feature and a spring back, more commonly found on American cameras of that period. The Oxford and Roll-film models were made only in the quarter-plate size. The Focal Plane model was produced in quarter-plate and 5" x 4" sizes. These cameras were very similar except for the different backs.

Around 1906 these three models were replaced by the Nimrod Automan series of cameras.

The camera closes with the front standard on the baseboard, as the baseboard is raised a lever connects to a cam in the camera body and tips the lens panel to lie parallel to the baseboard. On opening, a coiled spring running along the hinge between the baseboard and the body pushes the baseboard into place, as the lever becomes free of the cam the lens panel is pushed to the upright position by a spring at the bottom of the front standard.

The unusual focusing arrangement of a lever moving the front standard along a rod fixed to the baseboard was based on H. P. Tattersall's 1900 patent.

References & Notes:
BP 15640/1900. BP 20226/1900. BJA 1902, p. 1266. BJA 1903, pp. 925, 1297. BJA 1905, p. 1284. Falchenberg, British Hand & Stand Cameras, p. 20.

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Holliday, Thornton-Pickard Cameras & Equipment.

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