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Thread: Review: the Petal Subminature....... a TINY little Camera from the late 1940s

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Review: the Petal Subminature....... a TINY little Camera from the late 1940s

    (parking next week's review thread here in Mod's room)

    This week, we're featuring a camera about the size of a 50cent coin made in the late 1940's in Occupied Japan.

    This camera is part of Mr Kuan Kee's extensive collection of old mechanical cameras

    The Petal camera was made by the Sakura Seiki Company in Japan and continued the then Japanese fascination and love affair with minature cameras.



    In my hands, it felt like a little pewter jewelery piece and comes with a cute little red ribbion tied to it.


    An ad for the Petal Camera ..... (image courtesy of www.vintagephoto.tv)



    The dial seen on the front of the camera is used to select either 1 shutter speed (I could not accurately estimate the speed but guesstimate it at around 1/90sec ) or a bulb exposure.

    The film is circular in shape and film advancing is done by ROTATING the film ...... you rotate the film from one number to the next (the numbers are engraved along the circumfrence and a it needs to match up with a red colored dot.

    Opening up the back of the Petal Camera there is nothing much to see but for a little hole at the 11o'clock position. Thats the exposure frame . Once an exposure is made, the round film is rotated to the next unexposed segment of film.

    There are numbers 1 to 6 so I am guessing this camera takes 6 exposures per disc of film

    At the top of the camera you will see a small little round hole ..... this is the optical viewfinder ..... no glass.

    The Front of the camera has the words Petal Patented engraved and the Back of the camera is engraved with "Made in Occupied Japan"

    The Petal Camera came with its own Patel Film that comes in a square paper wrapped package that reads " Patel - Patel Film , Panchromatic, Daylight Loading".
    Last edited by ed9119; 31st August 2011 at 08:22 PM.
    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review: the Petal Subminature....... a TINY little Camera from the late 1940s

    The Petal Camera also came with a user manual ...... (courtesy of www.vintagephoto.tv) http://www.vintagephoto.tv/petalinstr.shtml

    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review: the Petal Subminature....... a TINY little Camera from the late 1940s

    Other information on the Petal Camera

    - It was sold as an export set
    - it sports a tiny 12mm, f2.6 lens
    - Exposures taken are about 6mm in diameter
    - DIAMETER of the main camera body is about 28-29mm
    - Rarely seen on eBay ..... last couple of specimens fetched between US$700-800 in various conditions
    - The film is 25mm in diameter and fits into a small custom cassette
    - The film that you see in the image is with a pre-loaded cassette
    - The shutter is triggered by activating a little button on the top right
    - There is no need to **** the shutter as it is 'everset' (it re-cocks automatically when triggered)

    There is a SECOND variant of the Petal Camera...... its Octogon in shape and sold as the Sakura Petal with 1/25sec shutter speed
    Last edited by ed9119; 31st August 2011 at 03:55 PM.
    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review: the Petal Subminature....... a TINY little Camera from the late 1940s

    Notice the viewfinder above the body and the lens located in that tiny little hole below it


    dangling from the ribbon this little camera epitomizes minature and cuteness all rolled into one
    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review: the Petal Subminature....... a TINY little Camera from the late 1940s

    the back cover has the engraving "Made in Occupied Japan"


    With the back cover opened ..... a little twist and the back cover unscrews open



    how small is this camera ? next to my watch and a couple of coins.... i think my watch face is larger than the camera lolzz


    there must be a misprint with the word Patel
    This is the film which is used on the Petal Camera
    Last edited by ed9119; 31st August 2011 at 08:33 PM.
    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review: the Petal Subminature....... a TINY little Camera from the late 1940s

    thread released for viewing....
    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

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