Mihama Six

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Japanese Six (6×6)
Postwar models (edit)
Aires Viceroy | Angel Six | Aram Six | Astoria Super Six | Atom Six | Balm Six | Baron | Beauty Six (1950) | Beauty Six (1953) | Calm Six | Carl Six | Centre Six | Crown | Crystar Six | Daido Six | Dorima Six | Doris Six | Ehira Six | Elbow Six | First Six | Flora Six | Fodor Six | Frank Six | Fujica Six | Super Fujica Six | Futami Six | Gotex | Grace Six | Kohken Chrome Six | Kyowa Six | Liner Six | Lyra Six | Mamiya Six | Middl Six | Mihama Six | Mine Six | Minon Six | Mizuho Six | Motoka Six | Mount Six | Muse Six | Super Naiku | Ofuna Six | Olympus Six | Olympus Chrome Six | Orion Six | Oscar Six | Pigeon Six | Planet | Please Six | Pluto Six | Poppy Six | Press Van | Press Van-120 | Proud Chrome Six | Proud Super Six | Renown Six | Ricoh Six | Ruvikon | Ruvinal | Sanon Six | Silver Six | Sisley 1 | Sisley 2 & 3 | Sister Six | Tenar Six | Toho Six | Tomic | Toyoca Six | Ugein Six | Wagen Six | Walcon 6 | Welmy Six | Wester | Windsor Six
rigid or collapsible
Dia Six | Ehira Chrome Six | Enon Six | Flora | Flashline | Fujipet | Harmony | Mikono-6 | Orion | Ponix | Rich-Ray-6 | Shumy | Weha Chrome Six
Japanese 6×6 TLR, pseudo TLR and medium format SLR ->
Japanese Semi (4.5×6) and older 6×9 ->

The Mihama Six is a series of 6×6 folding cameras using 120 film, produced by Mihama (or Suruga) from 1952 until 1957. There are a number of models, all sharing the same body with horizontal folding bed. This body was manufactured by Takane,[1] at least for the early days. An MSK logo appeared on the folding struts.

No model of Mihama Six has any automation for film advance, and all but one can take both 6×6 and 4.5×6 pictures. These have two red windows in the back, one for each format, with a sliding cover accordingly engraved. All the lenses are 75mm f/3.5 unless stated otherwise. Mihama does not seem to have been a lens maker, and "Mihama" lenses can be presumed to have been a mere matter of branding.

Earlier models, without rangefinder

Mihama Six I

The first Mihama Six (Mihama Six I) was released in 1952 — the name of the company at the time was Mihama Seikō (三浜精工株式会社). At first glance it may appear to be a rangefinder camera, but instead it has two viewfinders, one for 6×6 and the other for 6×4.5. It has been observed with either a Mihama or a Seriter lens, and with an NKS shutter (B, 1–200). It has been reported with a Nomular 75/3.2 lens, and also with an alternative shutter, called MKS or MSK depending on the source.

Mihama Six Model-X

McKeown [2] mentions a Mihama Six Model-X, a simpler version, apparently for 6×6 format only. The camera pictured has no top housing, only a tubular optical finder centered on the top plate and a diecast accessory shoe between the finder and the advance knob.

Mihama Six II

The Mihama Six II (1953) adds a viewfinder switch on the back left that puts a red mask across the viewfinder that is not in use. It has a C. Mihama lens and an NKS shutter (B, 1–200).

Mihama Six IIIA

The Mihama Six IIIA (1954) — from Suruga Seiki (駿河精機株式会社) rather than Mihama — adds a depth-of-field scale; it has been observed with either a Mihama lens or a Kepler triplet lens, and either an NKS shutter (B, 1–200) an NKS-FB shutter (B, 1–300) or an MSK shutter (B, 1-200).

Later models, with rangefinder

Mihama Rhyme Six

The Mihama Rhyme Six (1954) has a single viewfinder, combined with an uncoupled rangefinder. The viewfinder is to the right (when holding the camera), and the rangefinder window to the left: the reverse of the usual arrangement. The rangefinder is set by a knob under the left thumb. The lens is any a C. Kepler Anastigmat, C. Koular Anastigmat or Tri-Lausar from Tomioka. Perhaps Mihama Rhyme Six I has the same body as the Doris IIIA.

Mihama Rhyme Six II / Mihama Six R

The Mihama Rhyme Six II (also 1954) switches around the positions of the viewfinder and rangefinder. The Mihama Six R (1955) is a Rhyme Six II with a Toko lens (from Tōkyō Kōgaku) and either an NKS-FB or a Copal shutter (B, 1–300). An advertisement in the January 1955 issue of Shashin Salon offered the IIIA for ¥9,800 and the R for ¥15,300.

Mihama Six R has been confirmed to exist, but Mihama Rhyme Six II has not yet been confirmed. It is possible that the name Mihama Rhyme Six II was used only in advertising.

Mihama Six S

The Mihama Six S (also 1955) is a major improvement, with a coupled rangefinder and unit focusing. The lens is either a C. Kepler or a Toko, the shutter either NKS-FB or Copal MX (both B, 1–300). An advertisement in the June 1955 issue of Shashin Salon offered it for ¥14,000.

On the later model, the design of the front cover has been changed.

Mihama Six S2

The Mihama Six S2 (1957) — from Mihama Camera (ミハマカメラ株式会社) — has auto-stop winding, a C. Lausar 80mm f/3.5 lens and MIHAMA shutter (B, 1–400). When 6x6, it is auto-stop winding, but when 6x4.5, it is supposed to use red window. There is no bright frame in the viewfinder. An advertisement in the August 1957 issue of Shashin Salon offered it, complete with case and flashgun, for ¥13,000.


  1. Hagiya Takeshi, "Mine Shikkusu: Gunma-ken Takasaki-shi no kameramēkā".
  2. 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). Page 909.

Sources / further reading

  • 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. Items 941–7, 1670.
  • Hagiya Takeshi (萩谷剛). "Mine Shikkusu: Gunma-ken Takasaki-shi no kameramēkā" (ミネシックス:群馬県高崎市のカメラメーカー, Mine Six: A camera-maker in Takasaki, Gunma). Chapter 7 of Zunō kamera tanjō: Sengo kokusan kamera jū monogatari (ズノーカメラ誕生:戦後国産カメラ10物語, The birth of the Zunow camera: Ten stories of postwar Japanese camera makers). Tokyo: Asahi Sonorama, 1999. ISBN 4-257-12023-1.
  • Kawamata Masataku (川又正卓). Mihama Six IIIA. In Supuringu kamera de ikou: Zen 69 kishu no shōkai to tsukaikata (スプリングカメラでいこう: 全69機種の紹介と使い方, Let's try spring cameras: The use of and actual examples from 69 machines). Tokyo: Shashinkogyo Syuppan-sha, 2004. ISBN 4-87956-072-3. Pp.126–7.


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