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Thread: 12" Goerz Dagor?

  1. #1

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    12" Goerz Dagor?

    I have a 12" Goerz Dagor lens that I use on rare occasions. I am aware that there are a number of variations of the lens but I don't know the differences. There's a red dot, a gold dot and no dot at all. Some have a gold ring, some don't. Recently I have noticed a wide disparity in the value of these lenses.

    Can someone give me cliff notes about the various versions of this lens and how to tell whether mine is one of the $100 ones or one of the $1000 ones? I'm not considering selling it at this time but it might help me decide a later date.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Mark Sawyer's Avatar
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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    Later coated Dagors are the best performers and worth the most. Pricing is iffy as there were many iterations of the Dagor, and of Goerz itself, mostly overlapping.
    "I love my Verito lens, but I always have to sharpen everything in Photoshop..."

  3. #3

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    Note: Goerz "red dot" lenses are Apochromatic Artars; process lenses, not the Dagor formula.
    You should look on the front page of this site, which contains a lot of info on older lenses, including some Goerz data unavailable elsewhere. You might also post your serial# or a pic of the nameplate ring to help others identify your lens. And you might do a search on "Dagor" on this forum, there's a lot of information (and a hell of a lot of opinionating) here. More than I could summarize, even if I was an expert (which I am not). Best of luck!

  4. #4

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    Dagors have gone up and down in the 13 years I've been shooting LF. Any Gold dots or rims helps their value. But since I hadn't watched them in the past 4-5 years I just went on ebay, completed sales. That tells you what things are currently going for.

  5. #5

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    I think the best bargains to be found out there for Dagor formula lenses are Goertz Double-Anastigmat lenses. Very same Dagor optic formula but without the label of "Dagor". Intern they tend to go for (way) less money. Long ago acquired a 14” (350mm) f/7.7 GOERTZ DOUBLE-ANASTIGMAT ILEX 4 for a fraction of the price of essentially the same optic with the word "Dagor" printed on the front of the lens.

  6. #6

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    The Dagor lens design was in production for about 90 years, by numerous manufacturers, not just the various Goerz companies. So their story is long and complicated; probably no one knows all the variations.

    (pure opinion) The ones that seem to be the most valuable, these days, are the 1960s "Gold Dot" and "Golden" versions made by the Goerz American Optical Co., and the later 1970s-80s versions made by Schneider (although manufactured by Kern in Switzerland).

    When I first asked about Dagors at the (sadly-departed) NYC store Lens & Repro, in the late '80s, I was told "they're cult lenses, collector's items; they're all going to Japan". Perhaps they were right. What it meant, at least that on that day, was that they didn't have a used 8-1/2" Dagor in stock. As it happened, I never did buy one.

  7. #7

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    The early Schneider Symmars were dagor designs rather than plasmats, too. I believe they came in 12"/30cm focal lengths.

  8. #8

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    I thought we didn't do valuations here. Lol.

  9. #9

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    Quote Originally Posted by karl french View Post
    I thought we didn't do valuations here. Lol.
    A Dagor that is a superior camera lens will likely be more desirable than a lemon.
    I think a search would come up with the info the OP seeks.
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
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  10. #10

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    Re: 12" Goerz Dagor?

    My thoughts as well. So many threads on the variations of Dagors.

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