Le Furet

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Le Furet (French: the Ferret) is an early camera for 24×37.5 mm pictures on 35 mm film, in 25-exposure spools,[1] made in about 1923 in Paris.[2] McKeown lists the maker as E. Guerin & Compagnie; two examples at Westlicht are stamped E. Guerin, C. Pingault & Compagnie.[3][4]

The camera is compact, measuring 86×48×46 mm.[1] It has a metal body, which in early cameras is painted; later examples have leather covering. The lens is mounted in a plated brass superstructure on the front. The arrangement of the lens and shutter varies between types:

  • An advertisement reproduced at Collection d'Appareils[1] refers to a single-speed model with an f/4.5 Hermagis lens (i.e. it has a simple 'I' and 'B' shutter; this one is illustrated in the advertisement, and is also the one pictured in McKeown[2]);
  • The same advertisement refers to a three-speed model.

The advertisement states that the camera is fixed-focus, but that unscrewing the lens allows focusing to below 2.5 metres.[1]

  • A three-speed camera, with a 40 mm f/4.5 Berthiot Flor lens, was sold by Christies in 2002.[5] Another, with leather covering, is shown at Westlicht,[3] with an estimated date of 1923, but has different styling to the camera shown in the advertisement, especially the machined advance and rewind keys, so may be a later model.
  • Another example at Westlicht has a 40 mm f/3.5 Hermagis Anastigmat Lynx lens, in a Compur shutter with speeds 1 - 1/300 second, plus 'B'. This has helical unit focusing, scaled to 0.75 metre.[4]

There is a folding reverse-Galilean viewfinder on the top, with cross-hairs in the front glass.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Advertisement for Le Furet, showing picture of single-speed model, at Collection d'Appareils.
  2. 2.0 2.1 McKeown, James M. and Joan C. McKeown's Price Guide to Antique and Classic Cameras, 12th Edition, 2005-2006. USA, Centennial Photo Service, 2004. ISBN 0-931838-40-1 (hardcover). ISBN 0-931838-41-X (softcover). p372.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Le Furet with three-speed shutter, f/4.5 Berthiot Flor lens and leather covering, sold at the [November 2007 Westlicht Auction].
  4. 4.0 4.1 Le Furet from about 1932 with Compur shutter (described as the 3rd type), with Hermagis 40 mm f/3.5 (aperture scaled on the shutter only to f/6.3, so some parts, or the whole shutter, may have been exchanged); a lot at the November 2011 Westlicht Photographica Auction in Vienna.
  5. Le Furet with three-speed shutter and painted body, sold in February 2002 at [Christie's in London.