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Non-Leitz reflex viewfinders for screw-mount Leica


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#1 Pecole

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 12:18

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I had two types of reflex viewfinders for screw-mount Leica, both non-Leitz : one was German, the Megoflex by Meyer & Co, the other American, the De Mornay-Budd. Frankly, their use was quite complicated, their size prohibitive and their exactness approximate, to say the least.

Here are some images, first of the Megoflex. The unit with folding cover-viewing case, was linked to the Elmar lens' front ring by a kind of arm, supposed to follow the distance setting. I had the two versions of the Megoflex, the second one having a different system of locking to the camera's accessory shoe.

The De Mornay-Budd was similar in concept yet more "modern" in design. The "cam" linking to the Summitar's front ring could be disengaged and turned 45º to the side.

 

Attached File  Megoflex et De Mornay Budd - a copie réd..jpg   44.13KB   4 downloads

 

Attached File  Megoflex - c copie réd..jpg   63.16KB   4 downloads  Attached File  Megoflex - d.jpg   62.48KB   4 downloads

 

Attached File  Megoflex - f copie réd..jpg   51.92KB   4 downloads

 

Attached File  Megoflex II (left) and I - a copie réd..jpg   54.56KB   4 downloads  Attached File  Megoflex II (left) and I - c copie réd..jpg   59.68KB   4 downloads

 

Attached File  De Mornay Budd - a.jpg   59.56KB   3 downloads  Attached File  De Mornay Budd - k copie réd.jpg   42.78KB   2 downloads

 

Attached File  De Mornay Budd - g.jpg   51.97KB   2 downloads

 

 


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#2 jc_braconi

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 16:02

Bonjour Pierre 
My humble participation with the Megoflex , the Budd and Morney and the Flexameter.

Attached Files


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#3 spydrxx

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 16:42

fascinating.


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#4 romanus53

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 18:14

had the Flexameter once, compared to the other ones even uncoupled, big device with dark screen, so a failed innovation.

#5 sandro

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 02:13

Pierre and JC, thank you so much for sharing these images and information with us. Did any of you use these systems? Did they more or less function as they were supposed to? Only by studying the photos I can get a feeling what Pierre means by stating that the exactness was approximate.

Lex


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#6 alan mcfall

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 06:25

For beauty it is hard to top the Megoflex. The flexometer does not track the lens focus so you manually set the distance.The DeMornay Budd has serial numbers, mine range from 10757 to 12611 so, at least 2000 or more made. For me, the Megoflex is so much brighter and easier to use.  The other two are quite dim. I have leather cases for all but the Megoflex.

My collection:

 

Attached File  IMG_0393.JPG   108.68KB   1 downloads

 

The Megoflex brochure states that it is from the Hugo Meyer U. Co.    Goerlitz

Sole distributor: A.O.Roth,85 Ringstead Road, CATFORD, LONDON, S. E. 6

I guess this was for England and other distributors were in other countries.


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#7 alan mcfall

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 06:41

Just observed that the first post mentions that the Megoflex had two different attachment mounting methods. Checked mine, it seems to be different than that shown in the first two posts.  Here is a photo of that second mount device. The brochure shows the first type.

 

Attached File  IMG_0394.jpg   129.89KB   2 downloads


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#8 Pecole

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 10:51

Bonjour Pierre 
My humble participation with the Megoflex , the Budd and Morney and the Flexameter.

 

Super! Your Megoflex seems to be in top condition, and the leather case for the De Mornay Budd is quite interesting (and rare). I knew about the Flexameter, but never did try to get one.


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#9 jc_braconi

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 16:20

Just observed that the first post mentions that the Megoflex had two different attachment mounting methods. Checked mine, it seems to be different than that shown in the first two posts.  Here is a photo of that second mount device. The brochure shows the first type.

 

attachicon.gifIMG_0394.jpg

The first mounting, as mine illustrated, is for IA, IB, IC, as you have to insert it from the front of the camera


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#10 jc_braconi

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 16:27

Super! Your Megoflex seems to be in top condition, and the leather case for the De Mornay Budd is quite interesting (and rare). I knew about the Flexameter, but never did try to get one.

Thank you Pierre, the Mego is in quite new condition


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#11 Michael Hiles

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 16:40

Interesting as collector items.
 
But… what is the point? Is this actually useful to a photographer (i.e. someone who wants to make pictures) ? If I want to make picture from waist level, I think I would look for an old Rolleiflex in good condition.
 
And how do you make pictures in portrait orientation without hiring a contortionist?

Michael

I would like to manage to prevent people from ever seeing how a picture of mine has been done. What can it possibly matter? What I want is that the only thing emanating from my pictures should be emotion. - Pablo Picasso

#12 luigi bertolotti

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 18:06

 

Interesting as collector items.
 
... If I want to make picture from waist level, I think I would look for an old Rolleiflex in good condition...
 

 

... but with Megoflex you have "best of both worlds"... :P , and a 36 shots autonomy (for which, indeed, F&H provided the well-known Rolleikin... ;) )



#13 willeica

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 21:09

 

Interesting as collector items.
 
But… what is the point? Is this actually useful to a photographer (i.e. someone who wants to make pictures) ? If I want to make picture from waist level, I think I would look for an old Rolleiflex in good condition.
 
And how do you make pictures in portrait orientation without hiring a contortionist?

 

 

You are right that the main current interest of these items is as collector's items. The Megoflex appeared before the II Model D, ie before Leica had a camera with a built in rangefinder, so this was an advance at the time. You have to look from back then forwards, rather than from now backwards when judging these things. To your second point, I believe that the Megoflex had a rear window as shown above. Alan or JC can confirm. I recently purchased an old Rolleiflex and I found the learning curve to be steep, particularly with the reversed images, although with square images no contortion was required for portrait mode.

 

William


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#14 jc_braconi

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Posted 14 February 2018 - 12:27

... but with Megoflex you have "best of both worlds"... :P , and a 36 shots autonomy (for which, indeed, F&H provided the well-known Rolleikin... ;) )

With the Rolleikin you can make easily only Vertical pictures, Horizontal need some contorsions, if I remember well (used mine one time only)


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#15 jc_braconi

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Posted 14 February 2018 - 12:42

There is a lever on the left side of the Megoflex which rise a mirror to 45° inside the opened folding top and you use it at eye level through the magnifying lens at the rear leaf.
What you see is upside down and left to rear but the focusing is clear, never tried to know if it is accurate with the lens on the camera


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