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Thread: Identification of vintage Rochester Optical Co. Camera

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    31

    Identification of vintage Rochester Optical Co. Camera

    Hi, I have an antique Rochester Optical Co. camera that looks like a Carlton but is different in several respects and is also like the Universal model. I was hoping someone could positively identify it. The side brass hardware is like the Universal but it has the rotating tripod base which only the Carlton had. One difference is I've never seen one where the front bed has a large square brass plate on it and the tightening knob is on the left side of the camera and not on the bottom of the camera like other Carltons. Also the back is different as it it has two brass levers on the center top and bottom. I have not seen this on any other Rochester cameras I have. It also has an interesting mask that fits inside the back to make it 5x7 instead of 6 1/2 x 8 1/2. Has anyone seen a back like this? I would be interested to hear from someone who knows more about the different R.O.C. models. I am including some pictures of the different features. Thanks.

    http://www.rncameras.com/ssl/020820/f1.jpg
    http://www.rncameras.com/ssl/020820/f5.jpg
    http://www.rncameras.com/ssl/020820/f6.jpg
    http://www.rncameras.com/ssl/020820/f8.jpg
    http://www.rncameras.com/ssl/020820/f9.jpg
    http://www.rncameras.com/ssl/020820/f91.jpg

  2. #2
    (Shrek)
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Montreal
    Posts
    1,708

    Re: Identification of vintage Rochester Optical Co. Camera

    There were 2 variants of the Universal. My early 1st version has the rotating tripod ring and a 2-way spirit level on the top. Yours has a knob protruding from the bed about in the middle, not sure what that does (locks the tripod ring?), and you have a little piece on the back in the center of the leaf spring to hold the frame as you insert a holder. Besides those, which I assume are improvements to the design during its production life, they're identical. And my spirit level could be an addition by the 1st owner.

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