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Thread: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

  1. #1

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    Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    Hello all you knowledgeable people with nothing better to do. Maybe you can help me. I've got an Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 lens in a Copal #3s shutter. I've had if for a while and kind of forgot about the thing. I can't remember what I paid for it now but it was dirt cheap. The lens had a ding in the barrel around the filter threads. I've repaired it so filters now screw on it like it was brand new.

    I've done some research on the internet and some claim that Osaka Commercial is the same as the Commercial Congo. The problem I have is that a 360mm Commercial Congo came in a Copal #3 shutter and not the smaller #3s shutter as my Osaka Commercial. The 360 Commercial Congo has an image circle of 415mm. I'm wondering if the Osaka Commercial is the same. Both are Tessar lenses and said to be copies of the 14" Kodak Commercial Ektar. One thing said was that quality control wasn't the best so individual samples vary. Yeah, I know, I have to shoot it and find out for myself.

    So I am wondering if it does indeed have an image circle of 415mm and if any of you know more information about this lens. Thank you all in advance.

    Alan

  2. #2

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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    It's a great lens. I love mine. Just put it in front of my 7x17 camera the other day and it fully illuminated the ground glass. Seemed sharp in the corners when I stopped it down. It was billed as a 10x12 lens. I find it's image quality superb. As far as I know the Commercial Congo and the Commercial Osaka are the same.

    Why don't you shoot with it and find out.

  3. #3
    New Orleans, LA
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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    I have a 360mm Commercial Congo and it is in a Copal 3s shutter. One of my favorite lenses on the 8x10 but never thought to try it on the 7x17. Thanks for that tip Karl.

  4. #4
    Do or do not. There is no try.
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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    The nomenclature surrounding Copal 3 and 3S shutters is inconsistent and sometime misleading.

    Sitting on the desk in front of me are three lenses mounted in Copal 3S shutters. Two of the shutters are marked "Copal 3" and the third says only "Copal". But all are Copal 3S, as confirmed by measurements, which is the only reliable way. It's very possible the (scanty) online Osaka Commercial literature simply omitted the "S".

  5. #5

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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    The lens was made by Yamasaki Optical, was rebadged Osaka by Bromwell Marketing. What little information about Congo lenses exists online is here: http://web.archive.org/web/201204192...o/index_e.html

    Yamasaki says its in a Copal #3. They might or might not be mistaken/confused but since the firm has closed I'm not sure there's anyone there we could ask.

    Bromwell Marketing's site is still up. Perhaps Ted can shed some light. http://www.bromwellmarketing.com/

  6. #6

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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    Thanks Karl, I'm going to test it against my 14" Kodak Commercial Ektar which is my favorite lens. It should have plenty of coverage for my 8x10.

    Thanks Thom, The shutter with my lens is plainly marked Copal-NO. 3S

    Thanks Steve, I believe you are correct and there is some confusion about Copal 3 versus 3s. I have seen Copal 3s shutters marked Copal 3. I was just trying to confirm that this is the same lens as the Congo. It is said to be a Commercial Ektar copy so I will test it against my 14" Commercial Ektar and see which I like better. I do like the shutter better than the old Ilex #5 but the Kodak has a little larger image circle at 444mm. If I do decide to sell this lens then the more information I have on it the better.

    Thanks Dan, I found that Congo information last night. That's how I determined the 415mm image circle for the 360mm Congo. I'll have to shoot Ted a message to see if he has more to add.

  7. #7
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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    I wouldn't trust any information in the Congo web pages. Both my 90mm f/6.3 and my 150mm f/4 soft focus take 40.5mm filters, contrary to what's claimed in the tables. There's no telling what other discrepancies may exist. The lenses themselves seem fine, but accurate documentation doesn't seem to have been their strong point.

  8. #8

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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Goldstein View Post
    I wouldn't trust any information in the Congo web pages. Both my 90mm f/6.3 and my 150mm f/4 soft focus take 40.5mm filters, contrary to what's claimed in the tables. There's no telling what other discrepancies may exist. The lenses themselves seem fine, but accurate documentation doesn't seem to have been their strong point.
    Thanks Steve!

  9. #9

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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    I have a couple Congo lenses in my 4x5" arsenal and think highly of them.

    Someone once told me that Congo lenses were made by former Nikon optical engineers who decided to leave to start their own business. Can anyone here confirm that?

  10. #10

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    Re: Osaka Commercial 360mm f/6.8 info

    Terry, Yamasaki Optical was making lenses before WW II. I think you're been misinformed. There's a similar story about the Norita 6x6 SLR.
    Last edited by Dan Fromm; 12-Jul-2017 at 01:13.

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