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.
camera shown is an early Voigtländer Bessa 66
with a Voigtar F3.5 and its hinged cloud filter. Except the Voigtländer Perkeo, it's the smallest
of the 6x6 folders I have. Compared to the top range full featured
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.
front closed. Top: frame finder folded, film advance knob, release lever retracted in camera bed.
from the back. Red window in the middle.
from above. Film advance, folded frame finder, depth-of-the-field scale..
Seen from the bottom. Opening button, tripod socket with extendable stand.
front open. Folds sideways. Left of the lens:
shutter cocking lever, right: self-timer.
Lens, yellow cloud filter open.
Frame finder unfolded
Seen from above. Distance scale around the lens barrel.
side, camera open. Aperture setting lever near the bellows, aperture
scale, speed scale, shutter cocking lever, speed setting ring.
Seen from the bottom, camera open.
Camera back open.
Original leather case.
Leather case open.
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
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
take-up spool into
place. Same procedure for the film spool. Insert the film paper
into the take-up spool and advance it using the advance knob until
well engaged. Close the camera back. Advance
the film via the advance knob
until the red window shows "1".
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
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.