BOLEX. Juan Carlos Rosero. AUTO CINE A 16mm Camera 1928. AUTOCINE A.
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The Auto Cine A was the first camera produced by Jacques Bogopolsky under the Bolex name. He had previously patented the Bol Cinegraph in 1924; a combination 35mm motion picture camera and projector that could film, as well as project both still and moving images.
16mm film had become an increasingly popular gauge among amateurs since its introduction by Kodak in 1923. In 1928, Bogopolsky introduced the Bolex Auto Cine which accepted 50ft daylight loading spools of 16mm film.
PRECISE SPEED: Exposures are made at 16 frames per second.
RELEASE BUTTON: Finger tip release allows for continuous exposures.
SHUTTER: Speed of each exposure is 1/40th second.
FOOTAGE COUNTER: built-in; indicates the amount of film run through the camera.
MANUAL CRANKING: could be accomplished on later versions of this model, as well as backwinding. Two sockets on the side of the counter allowed for hand cranking at different rates; one turn progessing 8 frames or two turns progressing 1 frame.
By 1930, Jacques Bogopolsky had sold the Bolex patents to Paillard of Yverdon Switzerland; a manufacturer of Hermes typewriters and other products. Paillard-Bolex was formed as the cine division of Paillard.
The Bolex H-16 was introduced in 1935. The design appears to have been loosely based on the Bolex Autocine B. However, it was a radically different camera. Among the most notable improvements was the addition of a three lens turret and variable speed dial.
THREADING: Automatic threading and loop forming throughout the entire mechanism.
MOTOR: Constant speed, spring motor mechanism; governor controlled. Large winding handle folds downward and attaches to camera when not in use. Spring cannot be over-wound. 8:1 external drive shaft permits the attachment of an electric motor.
TURRET: Rotating turret accommodates three interchangeable C mount lenses. The top position allows for critical focusing through a groundglass screen on later versions of this model.
The 9.5mm gauge, introduced by Pathe' in 1922, never caught on as an amateur format. Perhaps because of this, the H-9 appears to have never been sold by either the American Bolex company or Paillard Products of New York.
The H9 is otherwise similar in construction to the H-16.
The Bolex reflex used a semi-reflecting prism located behind the lens and in front of the shutter. The advantage was flicker-free viewing during filming. However, it produced a slight loss of light diverted by the reflecting prism (approximately 25%).
Bolex Cameras in the H16 Reflex Series: H16 Reflex, H16 REX, H16 REX-2, H16 REX-3, H16 REX-4 and H16 REX-5.
Identifying features: The first model of H16 Reflex is often mistaken for the later H16 REX. An original first model H16 Reflex can be identified as such by looking at the viewfinder; the control knob for eyesight adjustment on this model is located on the side of the finder. The most distinguishing feature, compared to later reflex models, is that it does not have a variable shutter control lever.
THREADING: Automatic threading and loop forming. The end of the film is simply placed in a channel leading to the feed sprocket. The release is pressed and the film is then automatically threaded throughout the entire mechanism.
MOTOR: Constant speed, spring motor mechanism; governor controlled. Large winding handle folds downward and attaches to camera when not in use. Spring cannot be over-wound. 8:1 and 1:1 external drive shaft permits the attachment of an electric motor.