Kershaw Eight-20 Penguin

Jump to: navigation, search

The Kershaw Eight-20 Penguin is one of the simpler cameras by Kershaw-Soho. It is a vertical folding camera for eight pictures 2¼x3¼ inches (approximately 6x8 cm) on 120 roll film. When the bellows is unfolded its front plate is in a fixed position. But despite the camera's simplicity it offers a distance selector with a range from 6 feet to infinity. The distance lever moves the lens/shutter-unit forward or backward, and also moves a pointer on the opposite side of the lens tube. A marker is printed on the lower front side, as well as the direction: "Set pointer here before closing camera". The pointer is "here" when the distance lever is moved to infinity, and thus when the lens/shutter-unit is closest to the front plate and is at its most compact. The plastic ring around the lens front plate is for the shutter, allowing the choice between the single shutter speed and bulb.

The aperture choice is between f11 and f16 - and on some examples, the aperture is fixed with no choice at all. When provided, the aperture lever with the red point moves a second, smaller aperture into or out of the optics. The shutter release has a long travel on which the shutter is cocked before its release. The too-small brilliant viewfinder can be rotated by about 90 degrees for vertical and horizontal exposures. Further features are the easily removable camera back, the bakelite film winding knob, a stilt foldable from the camera door, and of course a red exposure counting window in the camera back. Maybe the robust metal body with metal door has preserved many of these cameras, which were introduced in 1946, succeeding the Soho Myna[1].


  1. McKeown, p.456