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| Pictures by David Donnadieu |
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The Ricoh Auto 35 is a viewfinder camera with fixed lens made in Japan by Ricoh from 1960. The camera design was very original for a Japanese camera. The sovietic company KMZ made a copy of the Ricoh Auto 35, named Zorki 11.
The Ricoh Auto 35V is an evolution of the Auto 35 model.
For auto-exposure control there is a number between 6-2 to outer barrel, which corresponds to ASA 10-16,25-32,40-64,80-125, and 160-200 respectively. On early models the number was matched to a film by name name via a table on the back; on later models there is an ASA/DIN table instead. This setting actually controls the shutter speed (e.g., 1/25, 1/32, 1/50, 1/100, 1/160 according to the manual) and then the selenium cell determines the aperture using a trapped needle mechanism.
For flash exposure, you match the flash bulb to the film, set the film type to M (1/25) and then set a small tab on the lens barrel to the distance in feet/meters. This sets the aperture: 6-8ft is f/20, 12 ft is f/8, and 25 ft is f/4. Note that unlike later models, setting the flash distance does not fix the shutter speed to flash speed. Thus by combining the flash distance setting and the film number setting you effectively have manual control of the aperture and shutter speed.
- Type: viewfinder camera
- Films: 35mm
- Lens: Riken Ricoh 40mm 1:2.8 (3 element in 3 groups)
- Filter size 49mm
- Shutter: Seikosha 500 Series - 1/30-1/400 plus B (no speed display) Note: this spec is on the Ricoh website but conflicts with the documentation in the manual which lists only 1/25-1/160 + B.
- Exposure control: Automatic Exposure with meter needle.
- Focusing: Fixed-focus 2.5 meters
- Dimensions: 132mm x 66mm x 59mm
- Weight: 460 g