|image by OZBOX (Image rights)|
The Nescon 35 is a Japanese 35mm viewfinder camera, made in 1956 and 1957. It was made by Nihon Seiki Kōgyō and distributed by Goyō Shōkai. The camera was certainly an evolution of the Aruba 35 II, which was distributed in 1954 and 1955 by Chūō Shashin-yōhin and is usually attributed to Koike Seiki. The Soligor 45 and Ranger 35 are versions made for export.
The camera has a metal body with chrome top and bottom plates, very similar to those of the Aruba 35 II. The advance knob is at the right end and the rewind knob at the left. They are bigger than the knobs of the Aruba and the exposure counter surrounds the base of the advance knob.
The viewfinder is offset to the left and is contained in a top housing covering the space between both knobs. This housing also supports an accessory shoe and the body release. The release is bigger than the release of the Aruba and it is surronded by a milled part. There is a button placed close behind, at the place of the exposure counter of the Aruba, probably to unlock the rewind. The front of the top housing has a NESCON 35 marking. The serial number is engraved above the viewfinder.
The lens is a unit-focusing 40mm f/3.5. The lens rim is engraved Nihon Seiki Nescon 1:3.5 f=40mm with no serial number. The shutter is situated behind the focusing helical. It gives B, 25–200 speeds, selected by a lever with the 25, B, 50, 100, 200 positions in that order. It is synchronized for flash via a PC connector at the bottom.
The Nescon 35 (ネスコン35) was announced in various Japanese magazines in 1956. The October announcement in Shashin Kōgyō, reproduced below, says that the camera was priced at ¥5,800 and distributed by Goyō Shōkai. The picture shows a camera with detachable back.
|Announcement in Shashin Kōgyō October 1956. (Image rights)|
The camera was advertised as the Nescon 35 II New (ネスコン35Ⅱ新型) in Sankei Camera in late 1956 and early 1957. The January advertisement lists the camera for ¥4,950. The document only mentions the distributor's name Goyō Shōkai, and the picture again shows a camera with detachable back.
Actual examples and versions
|Nescon 35 No.104 |
image by eBayer natcamoutlet (Image rights)
Two versions have been observed. The first version, pictured in this page and in Sugiyama, has a fixed back and film loading through the bottom plate. The only confirmed serial numbers are 104 and 10168.
The second version has a back detachable together with the bottom plate. The bottom plate has a locking key in the middle and a tripod thread offset to the left. It is the one that appears in the original documents. Serial numbers are known in the 11xxx to 13xxx range.
The Soligor 45 is usually described as an export version of the Nescon. Its first version still has some features of the Aruba 35 II, and its second version is very similar to the Nescon 35 II New, except for the lower 1/100 top speed.
- Dates: advertisements and articles listed in Kokusan kamera no rekishi, p.395.
- A camera was sold in an online auction with a box reportedly inscribed "Nihon Seiki Kogyo Co., Ltd."
- Kokusan kamera no rekishi, p.395.
- Advertisement reproduced in Kokusan kamera no rekishi, p.265.
- Example pictured in Sugiyama, item 3523 (close scrutiny of the body edge reveals that the back is fixed).
- Example observed in an online auction.
- Shashin Kōgyō no.51, August 1956. "News Flash". P.112.
- 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 1435–6.
- 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). P.721.
- Pont, P.-H., and Princelle, J.-L. 300 Leica Copies. Neuilly: Fotosaga, 1990. ISBN 2-906840-03-3. P.251. (Contains a short descriptive text and a drawing based on the picture in Sugiyama, item 3523.)
- 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. Item 3523.