Kodak Retina type 117: One of the most important cameras of 135 photography history!

Posted: March 25, 2012 in WaLL Museum!
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Retina type 117

Last time, we introduce the history of roll films developed by Kodak [link]. Up till now, 135 format is still the most popular film size format and is defined as the standard.

For this article, we would like to talk about the 135 roll film old friend:   Kodak Retina (Type 117), product of 1934-1935!

The Retina cameras were manufactured at Kodak A.G. in what had previously been the Dr. August Nagel Camerawerk factory (acquired by George Eastman, owner of Kodak in 1932) in Stuttgart, Germany. The first Retina camera, Retina type 117, was introduced in the summer of 1934 along with a new 35mm film Daylight Loading Cartridge (DLC). Therefore, Retina 117 is the world’s first camera to use 135 DLC film after it was created by Kodak.

Since then, Leica and Contax fans stopped to use the special hand-loaded-in-the-darkroom cassettes, and most of the 35mm cameras use the same 135 DLC cartridges, even currently.

The Retina type 117 was replaced by the Retina type 118 within a year, the total production number is around 60,000.

Kodak Retina type 117 - folded front

Kodak Retina type 117 – folded front

Kodak Retina type 117 - folded side

Kodak Retina type 117 – folded side

Kodak Retina type 117 - folded back

Kodak Retina type 117 – folded back

Kodak Retina type 117 - bottom

Kodak Retina type 117 – bottom

Kodak Retina 117 DoF scale

Kodak Retina 117 DoF scale

Retina 117 unfolded

Retina 117 unfolded

Kodak Retina 117 - Lens and Shutter

Kodak Retina 117 – Lens and Shutter

Kodak Retina 117 unfolded - side

Kodak Retina 117 unfolded – side view

Kodak Retina type 117 unfolded - side view

Kodak Retina type 117 unfolded – side view

Details of the Camera:

Camera model – Retina type 117

Year built – 1934-1935

Lens – f3.5 Schneider Kreuznach Xenar (SN: 706994)

Shutter – Compur

Shutter speed – T, B, 1sec to 1/300 sec

Total quantity built: ~ 60,000

Made in Germany

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Comments
  1. Ali Radwani says:

    I realy like old kits,,.

  2. Thanks Ali! I love old cameras too so much!
    Next time we will share out Retina 118, and some photos taken by Retina 118..
    hope you will like as well.

    Cheers

  3. I’m extremely impressed with your writing skills and also with the layout on your blog. Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself? Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it is rare to see a great blog like this one nowadays.

  4. Mickey Oberman says:

    Wu and Lu,

    Thank you for this splendid presentation of a historic camera.
    It is so lucid, detailed and complete.

    Mickey

  5. […] Kodak Retina type 117: One of the most important cameras of 135 photography history! […]

  6. john ellis says:

    I have one in better quality ,How much are they worth ?.

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