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Hassy 80mm auto aperture lens - very unusual


larry_luckham

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I have an ELM with this very unusual Hassy 80mm auto aperture lens that I was thinking about selling as I'm no longer using it. The lens takes power from the charging port on your ELM, or can be powered by a separate battery. I don't have a battery or connector to do that as I never needed one, but I would guess it would be pretty easy to make one. Both camera and lens are in working order and I have the charger as well as an adapter to allow the camera to be powered from standard 9 v batteries. The issue at the moment is that I have no idea what's a reasonable value for the lens, or on a more practical basis, what's a reasonable value for the ELM, back, this lens, and the accessories mentioned. Any ideas? I'll post a scan from the manual on the lens for those not familiar with it.

 

LarryHasselblad_Page_2.thumb.jpg.c31b1b4818bf0fa5022dc27285700e57.jpg

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These auto aperture lenses were indeed not that common, so you do not see them up for sale often. They were not that common, i imagine, because few people would have wanted one (that is: many would have liked exposure automation of this type or any other, but this is not the most attactive way of providing that), and that still is true today.

Resale value will reflect that. You can offer it for little money (USD 400-500), to attract buyers who are intrigued, but only out of curiosity. Or for quite a bit more (3x as much), hoping to find those who have been looking for such a thing for a long time. The best strategy will be, in my opinion, to begin with the latter option. Put it up for USD 1500 or thereabouts. And be patient. If, after allowing plenty of time, noone shows interest, you can lower your asking price until someone does.

 

Mind you: above numbers are estimates, based on what 80 mm lenses without this adaptation go for. I haven't seen any of these auto aperture lenses up for sale for a while, and do not know what they went for in the past.

Edited by q.g._de_bakker
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I remember reading that these lenses were used on some of the early NASA human launches - the close up launch cameras had to be set up 24hrs in advance and left there, so some sort of exposure automation was desired to adjust for the lighting at launch time. I'm not sure if these were developed at NASA's request, but they were developed for remote cameras.

 

<EDIT> Nordin's Compendium states that the lens was made for the Swedish Police as a surveillance camera, which was matched to a special version of 553ELX that had the mirror removed, a faster wind, and a 70mm 645 magazine.

Edited by tom_chow
"Manfred, there is a design problem with that camera...every time you drop it that pin breaks"
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The adaptation was made for Victor Hasselblad himself. He was an avid bird photographer, and in his days photographing birds on their nests, close up, was not yet frowned upon.

 

He needed remote release, which was accomplished first - 1000 series - using a long fishing line tripping a spring loaded plunger. Downside was that it would work for one exposure only. He needed to return to the nest to wind on an recock both camera and remote release.

So later, they made a motorized camera, the EL, and a radio trigger.

 

And he needed some exposure automation, which he got using these units attached to C lenses.

 

Both EL(...) cameras and these auto aperture units are useful to other people too. But they were not made for NASA nor the Swedish police. Victor made them for his own purposes.

 

Very many things, if not all, in the V System exists because Hasselblad, the man himself, wanted it for himself.

He didn't care too much for making money selling his system. He never did make money selling the V System. He did not really need to, but was rich and able to indulge because of the money he earned through the Kodak deal the family struck much earlier.

Edited by q.g._de_bakker
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P.S.

Richard Nordin's Compendium does not (!) say that the lens was made for the Swedish police. He in fact mentions a special order from the police for a surveillance camera, at some time in the 80's, which would have consisted of a mirrorles ELX and was pictured with a data recording magazine and an auto aperture adapted lens. That's not the same. The auto aperture modification dates from well before that.

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That makes sense, as Richard' Compendium dates the Swedish police cameras in the late 80's, well after the introduction of the CF lenses. I know Victor had some items made for his birding hobby, I did not realize the auto aperture C lens was one of them (or I've forgotten that tidbit...)
"Manfred, there is a design problem with that camera...every time you drop it that pin breaks"
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  • 3 weeks later...
I have an ELM with this very unusual Hassy 80mm auto aperture lens that I was thinking about selling as I'm no longer using it. The lens takes power from the charging port on your ELM, or can be powered by a separate battery. I don't have a battery or connector to do that as I never needed one, but I would guess it would be pretty easy to make one. Both camera and lens are in working order and I have the charger as well as an adapter to allow the camera to be powered from standard 9 v batteries. The issue at the moment is that I have no idea what's a reasonable value for the lens, or on a more practical basis, what's a reasonable value for the ELM, back, this lens, and the accessories mentioned. Any ideas? I'll post a scan from the manual on the lens for those not familiar with it.

 

Larry[ATTACH=full]1352017[/ATTACH]

Sold to a collector.

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