The Tenax I (code no 570/27) was actually launched after the Tenax II. Like the Tenax II, it is a 24×24mm square-format camera using 35mm film, with a rapid-advance lever around the lens. But it is a much simpler camera, with a completely different body, no rangefinder, a simple folding viewfinder on the top plate, and a behind-the-lens Compur shutter to 1/300. Most of them are equipped with a Zeiss Novar 3.5cm f/3.5 lens. A smaller number have a Carl Zeiss Jena 3.5cm f/2.8 Tessar.
Production began in 1939, and it was nearly halted in 1941. There was limited production during the rest of the war.
After the war, the East German Zeiss Ikon company continued the model. At the beginning the shutter was a Compur to 1/300 or a Compur-Rapid to 1/500, then it became the East German Tempor to 1/300. The lens could be the same Zeiss Novar 35mm f/3.5, or a Carl Zeiss Jena 37.5mm f/3.5 Tessar. The body code number was now 111/23 with the Novar and 111/24 with the Tessar.
The Tenax was modified in 1953 with a fixed viewfinder integrated in a higher top plate with the exposure counter inside it, and a revised advance lever. Soon after it was renamed Taxona, because the East German company had lost the rights to use the traditional Zeiss Ikon names, property of the Western Zeiss Ikon company. At the same time, the Novar name became Novonar. The tip of the advance lever became black in 1954. Production ended in 1959.
Pictures of the Tenax I & Taxona
- The Tenax I page at the Pacific Rim photographica pages
- The Tenax page at Lumières en Boîte
- Tenax I, Tenax I, Taxona on www.collection-appareils.fr by Sylvain Halgand (in French)
|Zeiss Ikon Classic Cameras|
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