|Universal Heli-Clack Type III
image by eBayer rafu22 (Image rights)
The Universal Heli-Clack is a folding plate camera, made by Rietzschel in Munich, Germany, from about 1910. It is an adaptation of the 10×15 cm horizontal model of Rietzschel's Heli-Clack camera, intended for use either as a normal or stereo camera. The camera was made in three versions:
- Type I was supplied with a single lens of about 165 mm focal length. Rietzschel's brochure for the camera describes this as a panoramic camera, though this is hardly a panoramic format. The lens is mounted in an easily-exchanged lens board, so the camera may readily be converted for stereo use (or alternate lenses may be fitted).
- Type II was supplied with a stereo pair of lenses of about 120 mm focal length, in a stereo Compound shutter, again on an exchangeable lens board.
- Type III was supplied with both stereo lenses and a central lens for 'panoramic' photography. These are all mounted in a special Compound shutter, with a single set of controls (to set the speed and release the shutter), and a 'stereo/panorama' switch to select which shutter elements open. The camera pictured here has a Rietzschel Linear Anastigmat Serie B, f/5.5 150mm lens; the stereo lenses are un-named.
Rietzchel offered the camera with a wide choice of the company's own lenses.
Like the Heli-Clack camera on which it is based, this is a triple-extension camera, allowing telephoto lenses or auxiliary-lens attachments, and close-up use. In addition, the lens standard allows a considerable amount of front rise, which is geared, and shift.
There is a folding Newton finder on top of the camera body.
- Universal Heli-Clack Type III with 120 mm f/6.8 Double-anastigmat Dialyt stereo lenses, and a 165 mm Dialyt panoramic lens; a lot in an auction in November 2007 by Rahn AG (archived) in Frankfurt.
- Universal Heli-Clack Type III (lenses not identified) in an auction in September 2009 by Auction Team Breker in Cologne.