Zeiss Historica Spring 1981

Zeiss Historica Spring 1981

In this, the third Zeiss Historica Newsletter, and the first semi-annual publication, it is clear the editors were off to a great start.  This issue features memories of Hubert Nerwin of Contax and Tenax fame, a list of Zeiss observatory telescopes in the US, an optical term German to English translator, and a guide explaining what all the confusing Zeiss catalog numbers mean.  Essential reading!

Pg 3. Hubert Nerwin met with Zeiss Historica at their Rochester meeting and shared his memories of Zeiss-Ikon, from the Contax rangefinders, the metal focal plane shutters, to the Contax serial numbering system.  It’s a fascinating look into one of the companies most famous designers.

Pg 4. Large Zeiss Observatory Telescopes in the US.  You don’t have to go to Europe to see Zeiss telescopes, here is a partial list of ones in use in the United States at the time.

Pg 5. German companies often used German language terms to describe their products, and here is a handy translation guide.  Schlitzverschluss means Focal Plane Shutter!

Pg 6. The Zeiss-Ikon Contaflex TLR. The Contaflex name was used twice for two completely different cameras.  This is about the earlier one.

Pg 9. Basic Guide to Vintage Zeiss Microscopes.  If you want to start collecting old Zeiss microscopes, you’ll want to read this.

Pg 10. Zeiss-Ikon Camera Identification System.  A commonly asked question from collectors of Zeiss products is what do the serial numbers in catalogs, and sometimes the cameras mean?  What is a 515 or a 540 camera?

Pg 10. Zeiss-Ikon Film Sizes.  Another commonly asked question from collectors of Zeiss products is what does the second number in a catalog mean?  If you have a 515/2, then you have a Nettar that shoots 6×9 images on 120 film.

Pg 11. Anyone know who E. Dmitrieff is, and if he ever found his tie clip?


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