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FEX - Ultra-FEX 4th model (1951)

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The Ultra-FEX cameras are a real challenge for a collector of antic cameras. From 1947 to 1962, the quantity of cameras produced under the reference Ultra-FEX is huge. These cameras in bakelite were offered in a variety of 8 models (the one presented here is the fourth) and in an incredible number of variants. By the way, it is possible to find some discrepancies between a same model or variant...
This abundance can be explained due to the fact that very often production was unsettled by the disruption in supplies. In such a case, the production of cameras continued with what was available...

The main characteristics of the Ultra-FEX 4th model are :

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The lens Fexar-Optic-Spec is a meniscus Tourret-Narat, it can be recognized due to its blue ring.

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Chromed tube supporting the shutter and lens. (see hereunder picture).

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Free reel axis mounted with a small wheel,

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Three speeds 25, 100 and Pause P.

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Two apertures labelled "Normal" and "Intense".

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Shutter release with a metal head and located onto the lens.

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Slot for a flash but no synchro,

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Thread for a tripod.

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 Logo "Himalaya" or "France" on the bottom right of the front side (logo which may also not be present !...) 

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 The system which prevents to take snapshot when the lens is not in position does not exist yet (it appeared only with the next versions of the Ultra-FEX), but a hock has been added which avoid to press on the shutter release when not using the camera.

This range of cameras (and many other ones) was developped by Fritz Kaftanski. This German guy, born in Essen in 1899, emigrated in several European countries before moving in France.

During the German occupation, he formed an association with Lucien Bouchetal de la Roche in order to produce cameras under the mark FEX (for  France EXport).
Located in Lyon, this company became FEX-INDO and then INDO (INDustrie Optique). It stopped all activities in 1981.

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