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A Nikkor for a Tenax II
Old 10-07-2016   #1
wes loder
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A Nikkor for a Tenax II

Wanted a wide-angle for my Tenax II. The 2.7cm f4.5 Orthometar is so rare (302 made) that I could wait a long time. But maybe there was enough room to mount a F mount Nikkor. After finding the mount for a Tenax-mount Sonnar missing its optics and a K3 ring, I made a trip to my local machine shop. They built me an adaptor. Next, I bought an old 28mm f3.5 Auto Nikkor-H, filed off the rear projecting flange and I am in business. The 2.7cm Zeiss finder for the Tenax works perfectly. A little front heavy and no rangefinder coupling, but depth-of-view works. Cheers, WES
28 on Tenax copy.jpg
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Old 10-07-2016   #2
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Well done, Wes. It is a 2/3 frame camera or so. Right?
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Nikkor to Tenax
Old 10-08-2016   #3
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Nikkor to Tenax

The 28mm Auto Nikkor feels light until you compare it with the small original lenses for the Tenax II. I just wish it was a bit smaller. My 105mm f2.5 Auto Nikkor also mounts and works fine, but does vignette slightly. The 28 covers the 24X 24 frame. Will post pictures when I get them back from my processor. WES
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Old 10-08-2016   #4
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I have a Tenax II with the Sonnar normal lens. It may be a 40/2.
Mike Elek has a good write-up on it.
http://elekm.net/zeiss-ikon/tenax_ii/
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Old 10-08-2016   #5
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My example looks like a new [shiny] camera. It has been taken care of very well over the years. Lenses are simply too costly to get for the Tenax II, so what Wes has done is to breathe some new life into this camera.
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Old 10-08-2016   #6
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<In fact, the Tenax II is definitely scarce, if not rare.>
Simon Worsley estimates that Zeiss Ikon produced about 8500 Tenax II between 1937 and 1940. While scarcer than a Contax, this would make it a lot more common than the Super Nettel, Nettax or the pre-war Contaflex. The version with the 40mm f2 Sonnar is more common than the one with the 40mm f2.8 Tessar. The auxiliary lenses, 75 and 27, are definitely hard to find.
I have never seen the mounts for the Werra, 24X36 Altix or the Vitessa T, so cannot comment on how close they are to the Tenax II mount.
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Old 10-08-2016   #7
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That the 105 vignettes - I guess this must be some sort of mechanical vignetting since the lens definitely covers 24x24 mm.

I still haven't gotten around to sending my Tessar-equipped Tenax off for the CLA, but I am always on the look-out for a second one in good condtion, perhaps with a Sonnar.
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Old 10-08-2016   #8
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ebay right now has zero auctions for Tenax II cameras
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Old 10-09-2016   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radi(c)al_cam View Post
The cameras I mentioned have a large flange focal distance (e.g. Kodak Retina, Voigtländer Bessamatic, etc., are 45.7 mm), and they're built for a behind-the-lens-leaf shutter, so a lens adaptation should work.
Maybe-maybe-not. The Nikon F flange to focal-plane distance is 46.5mm. This was just enough. The challenge is not the mounts so much as the optical flange projections coming out of the nikkors in the back. This limited the clearance.
If one wonders as to why the Germans used so many different lens mounts, remember that Germany had strong patent laws. The camera industry constantly had to be figuring out different ways to do things because of patent restrictions. WES
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Old 10-09-2016   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raid View Post
ebay right now has zero auctions for Tenax II cameras
The upcoming Tamarkin auction lists one Tenax II, plus there is one on ebay in Germany. One or two Tenax II cameras seem to show up on ebay every other month.
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Old 10-10-2016   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radi(c)al_cam View Post
Patents are a reason, but: why oh why did the merged Zeiss Ikon/Voigtländer company produce nine (or even more?) camera families having completely different mounts during less than a decade?

Contax, Contaflex, Contarex, Icarex, Icarex TM, Contaflex 126, Prominent, Bessamatic/Ultramatic, Vitessa T…?
Well, that list spans actually more like four decades of mount design, from the Contax I to the Rollei era. And neither the Contax nor the Prominent were still in development at the time of the merger (the only - joint - rangefinder designed after the merger was a never produced Contax IV prototype with Ultron lens). Corporate introspection probably is to blame for the SLR mess - they ignored all competition outside their own house, and designed cameras according to their corporate layout of multiple branches with plenty of internal animosities. They started out into SLRs with the intention to be more complex than the Contax D they had left behind in the GDR, invented separate pro (FP) and consumer (leaf shutter) lines (the latter presumably as they owned the two biggest leaf shutter makers in the Western world), added a third line through Voigtländer, and spun down to a fourth and fifth in their last attempts to modernise and merge both consumer lines to catch up with the Japanese competition - and finally got picked up by Rollei, who had just released a more modern SLR with yet another mount...
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Old 10-11-2016   #12
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kudos to OP for his Nikkor Tenax.

here's my 21st century "Tenax"

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Old 10-11-2016   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radi(c)al_cam View Post
This is true of course, but I meant: AFAIK, models of all these very different systems — of basically one (1956) and the same (after 1965 at least) company — were purchasable as «new» during say 1959–69, and this abundance of lens mounts resp. the incompatibility issues were certainly VERY annoying for a lot of customers.
Well, they were a major handicap for Zeiss Ikon. But as far as customers were concerned, they probably were happy that ZI were still supplying that many already obsoleted mount systems with cameras and lenses. The mess of ZI systems is more due to ZI never introducing anything attractive enough to compete with the Japanese - as they had no new system that grew enough market share to abandon the old ones, they had to hold on.
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Old 10-11-2016   #14
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Does anyone have an old Cooke and Perkins catalogue? I know they made the Contax 50mm) to LTM adaptor for many years but wonder if they had a go at any of the others?
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Old 10-11-2016   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radi(c)al_cam View Post
Excellent! Is that a custom-made adapter, or did you buy it somewhere?
cheers its custom made Sonnar optics module to Leica thread mount focusing base (taken probably from some FSU lens). I bought the lens as is, so dont know the technical part how it was made.

LTM-M and M-FE adapters to fit it Sony are quite easy to find.

unfortunately don't have many pics to show, as I put my "Tenax" together only recently. am planning to use it in my next trip.
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Old 10-14-2016   #16
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Here area couple of quick shots from our place taken with the 2.8cm Auto-Nikkor mounted on the Tenax II. Wish I knew how to upload bigger images. Originals are much sharper than they appear here. Cheers, WES
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File Type: jpg BackyardSept16 copy.jpg (55.6 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg Gate9:16 copy.jpg (64.1 KB, 13 views)
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