Karat - Antique and Vintage Cameras

Karat

1936

First version

AGFA

Berlin

Germany

Image of Karat

Lens:
f6.3, 5 cm Agfa Anastigmat Igestar, iris diaphragm to f22.

Shutter:
Speeds 1/25 - 1/100, B. T setting by switch on top plate that locks the release lever in the down position with shutter set to B.

Construction:
Black painted metal body, leather bellows.

Format:
12, 24 x 36 mm exposures on 35 mm film held in Karat cassettes.

Focusing:
To 3.5 feet.

Attributes:
Direct-vision (lens/lens) view-finder.
Film advance by sprocket wheels above and below image area. Auto-stop on film advance, coupled to shutter. Automatic frame counter.

Identification:
First version with black painted body and horizontal stripes on lens panel, strap lugs, exposure counter visible in window.

Serial Number:
K 3913 .

With:
Cassette.

Karat

Model of 1938/1939

AGFA

Berlin

Germany

Image of Karat

Lens:
f4.5, 5.5 cm Agfa Oppar, iris diaphragm to f32. Serial no. 770579 .

Shutter:
Speeds 1/25 - 1/125, B. T setting by switch on top plate that locks the release lever in the down position with shutter set to B.

Construction:
Metal body, leather bellows.

Format:
12, 24 x 36 mm exposures on 35 mm film held in Karat cassettes.

Focusing:
Scale to 4 feet.

Attributes:
Direct-vision (lens/lens) view-finder.
Film advance by sprocket wheels above and below image area. Auto-stop on film advance, coupled to shutter. Automatic frame counter.

Identification:
Version with chrome top plate, no strap lugs, Oppar lens.

Serial Number:
EL 5286 .

With this camera Agfa introduced a new type of film cassette, though based on the earlier Ansco Memo design. The Karat cassette had no centre spool and therefore no moving parts, the film was wound from one cassette into another similar cassette and did not need to be re-wound. The film was moved by sprocket wheels which pushed the film into the receiving cassette. The Karat was easier to load than other 35 mm cameras making it ideal for those new to photography or who had previously used a roll-film camera.

The original model was supplemented by a model with an f3.5 Solinar lens and Compur or Compur Rapid shutter (1938) and one with an f4.5 Oppar lens and Pronto shutter (1938/1939), these both had chrome top plates. The f6.3 model was re-styled around 1939, the T setting lever was moved to the front of the camera, the strap lugs were removed, the shutter speed settings surrounded the lens and the lens panel was plain, the frame counter was completely visible, the black top plate was retained. A coupled rangefinder model with a Xenar lens was produced in small quantities during the war. The Karat was re-introduced after the war.

The Karat cassette formed the basis for the Iso-Rapid cassette introduced in the 1960s.

References & Notes:
BJA 1938, pp. 265, 586. BJA 1939, p. 262.

Homéos

Eka

Amourette

Sept

Ansco Memo

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