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Ehira Six and Astoria Super Six

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Japanese Six (6×6)
Postwar models (edit)
folding
Aires Viceroy | Angel Six | Aram Six | Astoria Super Six | Atom Six | Balm Six | Baron | Beauty Six (1950) | Beauty Six (1953) | Calm Six | Carl Six | Centre Six | Crown | Crystar Six | Daido Six | Dorima Six | Doris Six | Ehira Six | Elbow Six | First Six | Flora Six | Fodor Six | Frank Six | Fujica Six | Super Fujica Six | Futami Six | Gotex | Grace Six | Kohken Chrome Six | Kyowa Six | Liner Six | Lyra Six | Mamiya Six | Middl Six | Mihama Six | Mine Six | Minon Six | Mizuho Six | Motoka Six | Mount Six | Muse Six | Super Naiku | Ofuna Six | Olympus Six | Olympus Chrome Six | Orion Six | Oscar Six | Pigeon Six | Planet | Please Six | Pluto Six | Poppy Six | Press Van | Proud Chrome Six | Proud Super Six | Renown Six | Ricoh Six | Ruvikon | Ruvinal | Sanon Six | Silver Six | Sisley 1 | Sisley 2 & 3 | Sister Six | Tenar Six | Toho Six | Tomic | Toyoca Six | Ugein Six | Wagen Six | Walcon 6 | Welmy Six | Wester | Windsor Six
rigid or collapsible
Dia Six | Ehira Chrome Six | Enon Six | Flora | Flashline | Fujipet | Harmony | Mikono-6 | Orion | Ponix | Rich-Ray-6 | Shumy | Weha Chrome Six
Japanese 6×6 TLR, pseudo TLR and medium format SLR ->
Japanese Semi (4.5×6) and older 6×9 ->

The Ehira Six and Astoria Super Six are Japanese 6×6 coupled-rangefinder folding cameras. They were made by Ehira Kōki Seisakusho from 1949.[1]

Description of the body Edit

The Ehira Six and Astoria Super Six are horizontal folders, strongly inspired by the Super Ikonta. The body is perhaps based on the body of the Weha Chrome Six rigid model.

There is a combined range and viewfinder. The viewfinder window is offset to the left and the second image window is to the right. The lens is front-cell focusing and the rangefinder coupling is optical, with no mechanical linkage: the lens front element is geared to an optical device placed in front of the second image window and focusing is controlled by a small wheel protruding from the lens casing.. It is not known if the optical coupling lens is a wedge prism as on the Super Ikonta and other Zeiss Ikon models or a laterally moving lens as on the earlier Weha Chrome Six, also made by Ehira.

The advance knob is at the top right and there is a body release next to it. The accessory shoe is in the middle, flush with the top plate. The folding bed release is in front of the accessory shoe. The back is hinged to the left. The folding struts are engraved with the EHIRA K.S.K logo.

The lens is a Lausar 85mm f/3.5 by Tomioka and the shutter gives B, 1–400 speeds.

Advertising Edit

The camera was advertised as the Ehira Six IIIA (エヒラシックスⅢA型) in November 1949.[2] Three authorized dealers were mentioned: the Osaka branch of Tōyō Shashinki-zai, Sanseisha (㈱三青社) and Nippō Shōji (日邦商事㈱). In the text, the shutter is called Serea Rapid (セレアラピッド) and said to give T, B, 1–400 speeds but in the picture, the shutter plate is marked EHIRA RAPID at the bottom.

Actual examples Edit

Ehira Six Edit

The only actual example of the Ehira Six IIIA observed so far has a black rangefinder arm, the EHIRA RAPID marking at the bottom of the lens casing and an EHIRA SIX marking above the top plate.[3]

Astoria Super Six Edit

The same camera also exists as the Astoria Super Six IIIB. Two examples are pictured in Sugiyama.[4] The only visible difference with the Ehira Six IIIA is the chrome-plated rangefinder arm inscribed PATENT and certainly the marking above the top plate. One example has EHIRA RAPID at the bottom of the lens casing (as the previous model) and a Lausar C lens marking, certainly indicating a coated lens. The other has ASTORIA SYNCHRO instead of EHIRA RAPID.

Notes Edit

  1. Date: Kokusan kamera no rekishi, p.347; Lewis, p.67.
  2. Advertisement published in Asahi Camera, reproduced in Kokusan kamera no rekishi, p.121.
  3. Example pictured in Sugiyama, item 1296, and in Omoide no supuringu-kamera-ten, p.14.
  4. Sugiyama, items 1271–2.

Bibliography Edit

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