Pentaflex (Tokiwa Seiki)
The Pentaflex is a 35mm SLR camera made by Tokiwa Seiki in about 1955. It has a 5 cm f/3.5 Tokinon Anastigmat focusing to about 4 feet, and stopping down to f/16, which is interchangeable with a bayonet mount. The number of knurled rings on the barrel of the Tokinon suggest that this might have pre-set aperture control. An 8cm f/3.5 Neogon Anastigmat was also made for the camera (and looks rather finer). The Neogon is the standard lens on later models of Tokiwa's First Six.
The shutter is an MSK-Rapid with speeds 1-1/400 second, plus 'B', and is fitted behind the lens. It is a rim-set shutter, with the set speed visible in a window at the front. It is synchronised for flash, with a PC socket, but there is no flash shoe on the camera.
The body of the camera owes something to the Exakta, the front panels being angled, giving the camera a rounded shape in plan view. The viewfinder prism also resembles early Exakta ones (see the Exakta Varex, for example); a rather low, square pyramid. Even the engraving on the front of this (reading 'Pentaflex', with '24x36' underneath) in in the style of Exakta cameras.
Because of its lens shutter, the top plate of the camera is simple: it has a winding knob with a frame counter on the right, together with the shutter release rewind release button, and the rewind knob on the left. There is a tripod socket in the base.
- Pentaflex with lens serial no. 3271; lot no 461 at the 30th Camera Auction by Westlicht Photographica Auction (now Leitz Photographica Auction), 19 November 2016: several excellent pictures of the camera.
- Neogon Anastigmat 8cm f/3.5, serial no. 10141 lot 462 in the same auction. The lens appears to have no focus scale.