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Ernemann, Heinrich Ernemann A. G. Dresden

Ernemann Bob I

Erneman Bob I

The Ernemann factory got part of Zeiss Ikon group in 1926 but this Bob I is old enough that it has no connections to Zeiss. I have not succeeded to trace this camera exactly though it has been in my fathers custody for years. Now it is too late to ask him anything.

The lens is Ernemann Doppel Anastigmat, ERNON "1= 6,8 Nr.0c. F=80mm. Lens number is 34479 and the camera serial is 347700. Shutter speed are marked , O, Z, 100, 50, 25, 10, 5, 2, 1. In spite of the fact that this camera has been in my hands even in my childhood I have never seen anybody taking pictures with it. I used it as a toy and in my imagination it was an awesome and aggressive tank. You could get 16 6x4cm exposures on a 127 format film but it is really hard to find. It is avalable but not in the common markets.
Otherwise the camera is in good working condition. The shutter sounds OK but times are hardly accurate. After some test shots you could certainly get acceptable pictures if not... the film format.


It weights is about 310g and the size is 120 x 60 x 25mm (closed). The camera is made of wood and aluminium. Some metal parts are nickel plated brass. Animal friends and other anomalists :The black covering is genuine leather, so you are welcome to spray on it. After that I promise to serve you a huge Finnish grilled sausage or two.

In 1889, Heinrich Erneman and Wilhelm Franz Matthias established a company which got a name "Dresdener photographische Apparate-Fabrik Ernemann & Matthias". Everything started by a production of varous wooden cameras. The volume of production raised rapidly after the new building complex was consecrated and in 1907 the company started also a lens production. In addition to rolli film and plate cameras (perhaps the most famous is Ernemann-HEAG 1900-1927), they manufactured also film projectors. In 1903 the "Lightgöttin" ("Goddes of Light") become a registered trademark for Ernemann products.
The Ermanox camera with the fastest lens so far the Ernostar 1:1,8 was presented in 1925 as a proof for the the ultimate optical skill of the Ernemann AG.
The entrepreneur Henry Ernemann was an outstanding personality. He understood the importance of good working conditions and embraced social improvements such as profit-sharing for employees, holiday allowances and bonuses. The economic invention that led 1926 under a special operation by Carl Zeiss Jena establishing the Zeiss Ikon AG. It was created by the merger Heinrich Ernemann AG, the ICA AG, the Institute of Optical CPGoerz AG Berlin and the Contessa-Nettel AG Stuttgart.Today ERNEMANN CineTec GmbH produces and assembles products with relation to cinema projection, mainly 35 mm cinema projectors.

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©2004 Reijo Lauro