Everybody dreams of a Universal Camera … well that’s what Kodak said in an advertisement for their new camera, the Kodak Tourist. The Tourist line (ok, a line to two models) were the last of the folders that they produced. The first model was in production between 1948 – 51.
In my opinion, they were big and ugly … but many Kodak cameras were no deigned to be awesomely attractive … after all, they are primarily a film company. Both were designed with an aluminum body, a plastic top cover, and covered on the outside with Kodadur leather (yeah, they had their own special brand of synthetic leatherette).
Both were medium format folders that used 620 film and produced eight 6×9 exposures. FYI, 620 is the same stock size as 120 except that it wound on a thinner spool. Different variations different shutter and lens combinations … Kodon+Kodet, Diomatic+Anaston, Synchro-Rapid+Anastar. The ones I happen to have came with the Kodon shutter that had a three settings, I, B, and T. the I was about 1/60s. The aperture ranged from f/12.5 to 32. The Kodet lens is a fixed focus single element 86mm focal length.
The models that I have received came with a fixed focus single element Kodet 86mm f/12.5 lens in Flash Kodon shutter app. 1/50 sec plus bulb and time
The “universal” thing about the camera was the adapter kit … “4 picture sizes with 1 camera”. It allowed the camera to shoot in different formats and even use different film … Bantam 828 film, half 620, square 620, full 620.
As you can notice in the image (that one to the left), the film back can be removed because it is double hinged.
The second model, which happens to be called the Tourist II had some slight modifications … made between 1951 – 58, and was the last of the Kodak folders.