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Vintage Zeiss Nettar II 518/16 IH 120-Format Film Camera, Very Early Example
01223 242684 /ArthurRankHospiceCharity @ArthurRankHouse @arthur_rank_hospice
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  • Vintage Zeiss Nettar II 518/16 IH 120-Format Film Camera, Very Early Example 1
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  • Vintage Zeiss Nettar II 518/16 IH 120-Format Film Camera, Very Early Example 3
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  • Vintage Zeiss Nettar II 518/16 IH 120-Format Film Camera, Very Early Example 4
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  • Vintage Zeiss Nettar II 518/16 IH 120-Format Film Camera, Very Early Example 5
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Description

Though better-known as a manufacturer of lenses, German firm Zeiss has produced a number of cameras over the years, mostly under the Zeiss Ikon brand - a subsidiary formed by the merger of the Ica, Contessa-Nettel, Ernemann and Goerz, while the Carl Zeiss brand continued to produce lenses and other optical components. After the Second World War when Germany was split into West and East, the Zeiss corporation was also split - the factories in the west continued under the names Carl Zeiss and Zeiss Ikon, whereas those in the east became Zeiss Jena; this example is a West German Zeiss Ikon Nettar, part of a range of horizontally-folding cameras first introduced in 1937 and sharing many similarities with a range of vertical folders, also called Nettar, which predates the horizontal folders by three years.

This particular one is a Nettar II, produced in a number of variants between 1949 and 1959; this 518/16 variant fitted with a Novar-Anastigmatic 75mm f/4.5 lens and Velio shutter (known as the IH type) was made and sold new between 1953 and 1958. However, the serial number on this one provides us with a hint that it may be an oddity: the stamped number is U81420, which corresponds to manufacture in early 1952 when the letters U, V and X were all used, which suggests it's a very early example - in fact, as the code is so indistinct (the U looks far more like a J but can't possibly be as J corresponds to 1938 and 1939) it may even be a pre-production sample, perhaps made for inspection by potential vendors in Britain as the distance scale on the focus ring is marked in imperial measurements.

Also known as the Signal Nettar and Nettar IIb, it features an optical viewfinder with an unusual double-exposure indicator in the form of a little red panel which slides halfway across the viewfinder when the shutter has been fired, then retracts when the film is advanced. The Nettar range was designed to be a more affordable alternative to the more upmarket (and expensive) Ikonta models (if you ever find a Nettax, it's basically a Nettar with a light meter - and rare, and worth buying) but, being a Zeiss, it's most certainly not low quality. In fact, they share many of the same parts including bodies and the folding struts as the Ikontas, and that definitely shows in this one: press the button to extend the lens and it pops out silkily smooth before stopping with a satisfyingly solid clunk, then retract it (press downward on the struts) and it folds up neatly with no resistance at all before the door latches back into place.

Everything else is working as intended too - cock the shutter using the little lever on top of the lens barrel, wind the film advance so the red panel slides back, press the button and it works every time. Shutter speed (1/10, 1/25, 1/50, 1/100, 1/200 + B) and aperture (f/4.5, 5.6, 8, 11, 16, 22) are also in full working order, as is the focus ring which extends from 4 feet to infinity. There is no dust nor fungal growth within the barrel and the lens is clean and free of scratches; the viewfinder is a little hazy though not nearly to the point at which it becomes unusable. We don't have any 120 film to perform a full test, but there is no evidence of light leakage in either the body or the bellows

It's in very good cosmetic condition with only a minimal amount of paint loss to the corners of the shell, no scratches or corrosion to the exposed metal parts of the body and no peeling of the leather (or leather-effect) outer skin, though there is a small scuff on the bottom and some very minor damage to the knurled part of the film advance knob. Both logos are clear, distinct and unworn, as are the details on the back, and the tripod bushing appears to be unused. The camera is supplied with its original brown leather case, made specifically for this range, but this is in quite poor condition with loose stitching along the bottom, a previous owner's details written on the inside and a broken strap.

The camera came to us with a Gossen Sixon light meter made at about the same time as the Nettar II (production began in 1952 and it was one of many meters made by Gossen with names involving "six" - there was also the Sixtus, the Digisix, the Lunasix and several others). It's a very typically 50s style with chrome sides and a concertina cover and is in full working order, complete with its original metal strap (with a clip on the end to attach it to a pocket or camera strap), green case and green velour-covered box. We sold an identical meter for £30 recently but, as the two items have presumably been together for a long time, we've decided in this case to include it with the camera at no extra cost.


Specs and Details
• Made By: Zeiss Ikon
• Model: Nettar II 518/16 (IH type)
• Serial: U81420
• Type: Horizontal folding
• Format: 120
• Produced: 1953-1958 (this example appears to be 1952 - see description)
• Made In: West Germany
• Lens: Novar-Anastigmatic 75mm f/4.5
• Shutter: Velio
• Shutter Speeds: 1/10, 1/25, 1/50, 1/100, 1/200 + B
• Aperture: f/4.5, 5.6, 8, 11, 16, 22
• Features: Tripod mount, cable release socket, original leather case

Due to the nature of this item it is not always possible for us to identify any missing parts.
For this reason we ask that you please check the pictures carefully, as these show everything that is included.

This item has been very kindly donated to the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity.

Arthur Rank Hospice Charity supports people in Cambridgeshire living with an advanced serious illness or other life-limiting condition and those who need end-of-life care. Our ‘Outstanding’ services are provided free of charge to patients and their families. Our aim is to provide the highest quality care, helping them to make every moment count.

100% of the money raised from this sale will go to the charity.

Our sales team do their best to check each item and ensure that the description and pictures provided are as accurate as possible.

Feedback is extremely important to the charity so if you are not fully satisfied with your purchase please give us a chance to resolve any issues by contacting us prior to leaving feedback.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us via eBay messages, we will make sure that your message is responded to promptly, usually within three working days. Messages sent over the weekend will be responded to on the next working day.

If this item is not quite what you were looking for but you would still like to help our cause, please consider providing us with a donation which can be done via our eBay Charity Profile linked below.

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If when you receive your order you are not completely satisfied, you may return the items to us within 30 days for a refund. Returns will be processed within three working days once the goods have been received by us.

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We try very hard to ensure that you receive your order in pristine condition. In the unlikely event that your order arrives damaged or faulty, please contact us via eBay immediately, this will be given special priority and you can expect to receive a response within 48 hours, Monday to Friday. Arthur Rank Hospice Charity will cover the cost of domestic return postage for any incorrect or damaged items, subject to the cost of the chosen return method being reasonable. Please contact us before proceeding if unsure.

About Arthur Rank Hospice Charity

Arthur Rank Hospice Charity supports people in Cambridgeshire living with an advanced serious illness or other life-limiting condition and those who need end-of-life care. Its ‘Outstanding’ services are provided free of charge to patients and their families. The aim is to provide the highest quality care, helping them to make every moment count.

Around 4,000 patients are cared for each year at the Hospice in Cambridge, the Alan Hudson Day Treatment Centre in Wisbech and in patients’ own homes via the Arthur Rank Community Team. This care supports people to improve their quality of life and fulfil their end of their life choices.

Alongside the care provided by the Inpatient Unit, Living Well services and Hospice at Home teams, patients can access: patient and family support; lymphoedema care; complementary therapy; medical and pain outpatient clinics; and advice from the clinical nurse specialists within the Specialist Palliative Care Home Team. Programmes are practical, holistic and tailored to the individual patient, family member or carer and may also include rehabilitative support, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and psychological support.

It will cost £10.5 million in 2021/2022 to run services, which are provided free of charge to patients and their loved ones. Contracted services from the NHS are budgeted at £6.98 million, meaning that £3.52 million needs to be raised through donations, fundraising activities and trading. The Charity is extremely grateful to the local community for the continual dedication, commitment and generosity they show in supporting towards meeting this target.