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Semi Elka

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Japanese Semi (4.5×6)
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The Semi Elka (セミエルカ) is a Japanese 4.5×6 camera, about which almost nothing is known. It is mentioned in the official list of set prices published in November 1941, under the names "Semi Elka I" and "Semi Elka II".[1] In this document, it is attributed to the company Banno Toyoji Shōten, which is otherwise unknown.[2] The Semi Elka does not appear in an earlier price list compiled in October 1940 and published in January 1941, probably because it was not yet produced.[3]

The Semi Elka was perhaps related to the earlier Elka shutter, which sometimes has T.B.C.T. markings or a TB logo. (The "TB" initials might stand for Toyoji Banno, but this is merely a guess.) It might also be related to the company Fuji Kōgaku, which made an Elka accessory rangefinder c.1936.

Notes Edit

  1. "Kokusan shashinki no kōtei kakaku", type 3, sections 3A and 4A.
  2. The name is hardly legible as 伴野豊治商店. This might read "Tomono Toyoji Shōten" as well.
  3. "Kokusan shashinki no kōtei kakaku".

Bibliography Edit

  • "Kamera no kōtei kakaku kanpō happyō" (カメラの公定価格官報発表, Official announcement of the set prices of the cameras), November 1941. Extract of a table listing Japanese camera production and setting the retail prices, reproduced in "Bebī Semi Fāsuto 'Kore ha bebī wo nanotta semi-ki da'" (ベビーセミファースト"これはベビーを名乗ったセミ機だ", Baby Semi First, 'this is a Semi camera called Baby'), an article by Furukawa Yasuo (古川保男) in Camera Collectors' News no. 277 (July 2000). Nishinomiya: Camera Collectors News-sha. P. 27. Type 3, sections 6A and 7A.
  • "Kokusan shashinki no kōtei kakaku" (国産写真機の公定価格, Set prices of the Japanese cameras), listing Japanese camera production as of October 25, 1940 and setting the retail prices from December 10, 1940. Published in Asahi Camera January 1941 and reproduced in Shōwa 10—40nen kōkoku ni miru kokusan kamera no rekishi (昭和10〜40年広告にみる国産カメラの歴史, Japanese camera history as seen in advertisements, 1935—1965). Tokyo: Asahi Shinbunsha, 1994. ISBN 4-02-330312-7. Pp.108—9. The Napoleon does not appear in this document.

This camera is not listed in Sugiyama nor in Kokusan kamera no rekishi.

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