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A.Lyet - Tourist camera (c.1895)

Expanding Cameras

This Tourist Camera using plates 13 x 18 cm is dated of 1895. It was assembled by a French manufacturer named A.LYET - 33, Rue de Bretagne - Paris.

The body is made of chestnut wood and the expanding chamber of black cardboard. It is equipped with a Claritas lens providing apertures of 8, 11, 16, 22, 32 and 44. The plate supporting the lens can be put off center horizontally.

The inversed picture was projected on a buffed glass located on the back side of the camera. The focusing was possible by rotating a knurled roller which induced the displacement of the back side of the camera along a linear rail.

When focused, the buffed glass was removed and replaced by a sensitive plate. Horizontal and vertical pictures were possible by pivoting of 90░ the frame supporting the sensitive plate (the expanding chamber was build to be able to rotate around the basis of the lens).

When I acquired this camera, it was equipped with a roller-blind shutter. Alas this one was destroyed during the restoration of the camera. Thus, the objective was mounted directly on the front plate. Taking pictures with this camera requested imperatively the use of a tripod and a black curtain.

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