Bessa (folder) alignment question

Discussion in 'Classic Manual Cameras' started by frank_a._bridges, Jan 3, 2005.

  1. Is it common for folding cameras to have a problem such that the
    taking lens is not parallel to the film plane. I have seen a few
    photos on e-bay of Bessas where it appears that they are not, but it
    may be they were not fully exended. Can the problem be repaired?
  2. Apparently Bessas are infamous for this problem, although my Bessa II didn't have any problem. The Zeiss Ikontas are reputed to be much better at maintaining alignment.
  3. Most likely they weren't extended, but if I couldn't see the legs I'd pass. Lacking information to the contrary, I assume a twisted flange implies a bent of missing lock tab - there are just too many cameras around to mess with junk.

    I don't think Bessas are worse than others but a slight (and readily corrected) misaligntment on a 6X9 will show up as softer ends/corners; more pronounced than with a square.

    Among the worst for alignment is the 28-pound Ensign. The struts aren't quite enough to hold the lens assembly at the end of it's travel, so the lens isn't consistently parallel. Also the Baldix has a knack for locking solidly but early, on-time, or late depending on it's mood.

    Overall, the lens alignment argument (as well as it's cousin film-flatness) is manufactured as a distraction from a lack of knowing the camera's limits.

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