Forum Index
Get help with your Graflex questions here
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Help identify Compact Graflex?

Post new topic   Reply to topic Forum Index -> Speed Graphic Help
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message

Joined: 23 Aug 2001
Posts: 1
Location: Denver, CO

PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2001 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I currently have a camera with a plate that reads "Compact Graflex" However it is not an SLR and the body size doesn't match McKeown's picture of one. SN of 48245. It has a top mounted cross hair type viewfinder and a non-Graflex type handle that a previous owner attached. The FP Shutter mechanism, on the outside looks right, but that is about all. Any help in identifying it will be most gratefully accepted. A picture is available at:
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail

Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2001 3:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well first off, I'm jealous! Yes that is an odd duck, and I have to say this is one of a handfull of cameras from Graflex that should have the title of 'rare'.

I haven't seen one before, my records show that F&S Division noted it as a Compact camera, rather than a Compact Graflex.There are three entries with this name, all the same size-- 3.25 x 5.5. Later I find an entry listed as a 5x7 Compact Graflex camera. I don't know if there is relevance there or just a bookeeper's shorthand.

The total of the three entries is 1003 cameras. But how many of these are normal and how many were modified is anybody's guess

It looks like the body of a Compact Graflex that has been modified. The rotating back lock release is missing but the mirror linkage is still there, the back is different too, and the body is obviously shallower, and maybe shorter.

I can't tell from here but it looks like a spring back, but might be a graflex back with a focus screen. the latter would make more sense, as it could accomodate a Graflex roll back.

It's just a guess, but from these records, they hadn't made the 3x5 Speed yet. Maybe this was the first attempt at making a small lightweight camera for the Postcard size roll film back.

Back to top
View user's profile Send private message

Joined: 20 May 2001
Posts: 577
Location: Bakersfield California

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2001 5:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

About 1985 I restored 3 cameras for a local
collector! One was a 3 1/4 x 5 1/2 top handle speed, with a body like this one--the trip lever location seemed odd at the time, as the other cameras of this age that I had seen, were tripped on the opposite side!
In thinking about this particular camera, and with the knowledge that Graflex waisted
nothing over the years (often switched bodies
from one model to another-even obsolete bodies were used this way)It would have been an easy task on the stovepipe body, to modify
it to the top handle as this one is! As an example,the "B" and "D" model bodies differ
only in that the "D" has a 2 piece front, and the "B" is 1 piece, with diff front doors and hardware of coarse!! Wish now that I had recorded all the ser. no's of all the
cameras that I restored and repaired for others--didnt even record "the who and when"
The top handle like this was made from 1912 to 1925 according to Paine! The lopped corner
tension plate was replaced in about 1921.
The curtain plate could have been from the Auto Graflex or the Press models! The one I repaired had a std spring back on it, and it was the first "Postcard" sized camera of this type that I had ever seen!

[ This Message was edited by: bertsaunders on 2001-08-25 10:44 ]
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic Forum Index -> Speed Graphic Help All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group