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FRANKE & HEIDECKE - Rolleiflex T (1958 - 1976)

Reflex Bi-Lens

Rolleiflex T - Type 2 - Version 1

The Rolleiflex T was produced from 1958 to 1976. At the beginning, it should have been a low cost camera, just less sophisticated than a Rolleicord.

Let kill a wrong rumor : the "T" designation does not come from the famous lenses Tessar, but simply from the first name of its creator : Théodore Uhl.

The Rolleiflex T is equipped with a shutter Synchro-Compur (B, 1/1s, 1/2s, 1/4s, 1/8s, 1/15s, 1/30s, 1/60s, 1/125s, 1/250s et 1/500s).
It has a self-timer and a synchro flash. This one may differ according to the period (see hereunder).

The Rolleiflex T range has been distributed according to three generations of cameras :

Serial number from 2.100.000 to 2.199.999 (from 12 of August 1958 to 10 November 1966).
Shutter Synchro-Compur with synchro for bulb and electronic flash. Aperture and speed selectors in plastic. All cameras are painted in grey.

bulletTYPE 2 - version 1
Serial number from 2.220.000 to 2.228.999 (from 11 november 1966 to end of July 1968).
Shutter Synchro-Compur X with a synchro for electronic flash only.
Aperture and speed selectors in metal. Cameras are now available in black or grey.
bulletTYPE 2 - version 2
Serial number from 2.242.000 to  2.249.999 and from 2.310.000 to 2.314.999 (from August 1968 to end of 1970).
Same as version 1 but with a photo counter for film 220.
bulletTYPE 3
Serial number from 2.315.000 to 2.319.999 (from September 1971 to 1975) and a last batch having the serial number from 2.320.000 to 2.320.300 (from 1 to 12 May 1976).
In this last two series : 300 cameras have been equipped with the "Tessar" lenses for the civil market; 2500 other cameras have been also equipped with "Tessar" lenses and 2300 equipped with "Xenar" lenses have been assigned to military market (2000 of them have been sold in military overstock in 1987 !!!)

The camera of my collection is a Rolleiflex T - Type 2 - version 1.  

Viewing lens Optical lens
Heidosmat - 1:2,8 - f=75mm
 Serial number : 3934683
Carl Zeiss Tessar(*) - 1:3,5 - f=75 mm
 Serial number : 4218091

(*) During several ten years, this Carl Zeiss Tessar lens was considered as the most precise lens in the world. Its reveals all its qualities and performances at an aperture of f:11

This camera belonged to an uncle of my wife for whom she and I shared a lot of affection.

In the past, I often heard him praising the qualities of his "Rolleiflex". He was unrelenting on the exposure adjustments and the framing. He was such a perfectionist that a very simple family photo requested long minutes of posing for his spouse, children, cousins, friends who had to stay still without stumbling.

This was, and remains, a family recollection that we like to remember.

Thanks a lot to Thierry for this personal gift...

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