120folder.com          Voigtländer Bessa 66

The Voigtländer Bessa 66 is a 120 film folding camera, 6x6 format, built
between 1938-41 and 1945-50 by Voigtländer& Sohn AG, Braunschweig, Germany.

The camera shown is an early Voigtländer Bessa 66 with a Voigtar F3.5 and its hinged cloud filter. It's the smallest of the 6x6 folders I have. Compared to the top range full featured rangefinders, it's only half the weight, 470 g.

Size (mm): 129 x 86 x 43
Weight: 470 g
Lens: Voigtar 3.5/75, closest focus 0.8 m
Shutter: Prontor II B T 1 - 1/175, F 3.5 - 16
Finder: simple foldable frame finder
Film advance: via red window

Here are some photos of the camera. There is a short introduction to the use of it and how it feels at the bottom of the page.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8422.jpg
Camera front closed. Top: frame finder folded,
film advance knob, release lever retracted in camera bed.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8423.jpg
Seen from the back. Red window in the middle.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8424.jpg
Seen from above. Film advance, folded frame finder, depth-of-the-field scale..

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8425.jpg
Seen from the bottom. Opening button, tripod socket with extendable stand.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8428.jpg
Camera front open. Folds sideways.
Left of the lens: shutter cocking lever, right: self-timer.



jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8429.jpg
Lens, yellow cloud filter open.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8436.jpg
Frame finder unfolded

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8427.jpg
Seen from above.
Distance scale around the lens barrel.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8430.jpg
Left side, camera open. Aperture setting lever near the bellows, aperture scale, speed scale, shutter cocking lever, speed setting ring.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8426.jpg
Seen from the bottom, camera open.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8432.jpg
Camera back open.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8433.jpg
Film chamber.


jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8435.jpg
Original leather case.

jpgbessa/bessa66_IMG_8434.jpg
Leather case open.

Handling a 
Voigtländer Bessa 66 is easy, it's just like other folding cameras. Loading film is fine, both spools sit in hinged cradles, no fiddling with pegs. Open the camera back, you will have to unfold the stand as it protects one of the opening buttons. Retract the film advance knob, swing the cradle out and put the take-up spool into place. Same procedure for the film spool. Insert the film paper backing into the take-up spool and advance it using the advance knob until it's well engaged. Close the camera back. Advance the film via the advance knob until the red window shows "1".
 
Open the camera.
Cock the shutter, set speed and aperture. Set focus by turning directly the front of the lens barrel, focusing moves the lens out. Press the shutter release lever. That's it. To close the camera, grab the red buttons at hinges of the struts and slide in the direction of the arrows, it will fold easily whatever distance is set. Turn the film advance knob until the next number is shown in the red window.

The 
Voigtländer Bessa 66 is a nice and simple camera, easy to use, with a good lens and a simple, but reliable shutter. It lacks automatic film advance and a rangefinder, but it's a nice camera nevertheless. It's extremely lightweight. A good choice if you want to start with a basic 120 film folder and spend next to nothing.

Voigtländer Bessa 66470129 x 86 x 43NoRWVoigtar 3.5/75 | 0.8Prontor II B T 1 - 1/175 | 16hinged cloud filter

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