Teraoka is a Japanese company, whose main activity is the production of scales, and which made the Terra (or Tera) cameras in the 1950s.
The company was founded in 1934 as Teraoka Kenkyūjo (寺岡研究所) by Teraoka Takeharu (寺岡武治). The roots of the company can be traced further back to the company Nihon Keisanki Seizō (日本計算機製造, meaning Japan Calculator Manufacturing) founded in 1910 by Teraoka Toyoharu (寺岡豊治), father of Takeharu, who filed patents for spring scales in 1928 and also founded Asahi Kōki Seisakusho (朝日衡器製作所, meaning Asahi Scale Works).
The company took the name Teraoka Seikōjo (寺岡精工所) in 1938 and was incorporated as K.K. Teraoka Seikōjo (㈱寺岡精工所) in 1947. It is said that Teraoka Takeharu was fond of cameras since he was a child, and decided to use the company's know-how in spring scales to create an auto-winding camera, distantly inspired by the Robot. He gathered a group of engineers and the first result of these efforts was the folding Auto Terra, developed in 1954 and released to the public in 1955. It was followed by the Auto Terra II and Super produced until 1962. At the time, the address of the headquarters was Ōta-ku Kugahara-chō 110 (大田区久ヶ原110) and the address of the camera department was Minato-ku Tamura-chō 5–4 (港区田村町5–4), both in Tokyo.
The company's main activity remained the spring scales and later electronic scales, for shops and postal services. It introduced a digital computing scale in 1973 under the brand Digi. The company name became Teraoka Seikō K.K. (寺岡精工㈱) in 1981. The company still exists (2007) and still uses the Digi brand. Its current CEO is Teraoka Kazuharu (寺岡和治), son of Teraoka Takeharu. Its main address is Ōta-ku Kugahara-chō 5–13–12 (大田区久が原5–13–12).
|Auto Terra Super L (Zunow lens).|
Picture courtesy of Carlo Colombo. (Image rights)
- Auto Terra (I)
- Auto Terra II
- Auto Tera IIB
- Auto Terra IIBS
- Auto Terra IIL
- Auto Terra Super and Optika Auto 35 name variant
- Auto Terra Super L
- Auto Terra Super P (police)
- Terra 35 (prototype)
- Terra Junior (prototype of a 4×4cm viewfinder camera)
- ↑ Teraoka Seikō company history. Takeharu first name: this page of the Teraoka/Digi website.
- ↑ See the Teraoka Seikō company history and the Teroka/Digi company history.
- ↑ 1938: Teraoka Seikō company history. 1947: Teraoka Seikō company profile.
- ↑ Shirai, p.125.
- ↑ Advertisements reproduced in Kokusan kamera no rekishi, pp.149 and 256.
- ↑ Teroka/Digi company history.
- ↑ Teroka/Digi company history.
- ↑ Name: Teraoka Seikō company profile. Son of Takeharu: Teraoka Seikō company history.
- ↑ Teraoka company profile.
- Asahi Camera (アサヒカメラ) editorial staff. Shōwa 10–40nen kōkoku ni miru kokusan kamera no rekishi (昭和10–40年広告にみる国産カメラの歴史, Japanese camera history as seen in advertisements, 1935–1965). Tokyo: Asahi Shinbunsha, 1994. ISBN 4-02-330312-7.
- 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).
- Shirai Tatsuo (白井達男). "Auto Terra I" (オートテラⅠ型). Pp.117–26 of Maboroshi no kamera o otte (幻のカメラを追って, Pursuing phantom cameras). Gendai Kamera Shinsho (現代カメラ新書). Tokyo: Asahi Sonorama, 1982. ISBN 4-257-08077-9. (First published in Kamera Rebyū / Camera Review. no.13, September 1980.)
- Sugiyama, Kōichi (杉山浩一); Naoi, Hiroaki (直井浩明); Bullock, John R. The Collector's Guide to Japanese Cameras. 国産カメラ図鑑 (Kokusan kamera zukan). Tokyo: Asahi Sonorama, 1985. ISBN 4-257-03187-5.
- Company history in the Teraoka Seiko official website
- Iida Tetsu no renzu-tan (vol.6) (archived), saying that Tamron was probably the supplier of the lenses for the Auto Terra