Sociedad Ibero-Americana de la Historia
de la Fotografia Museo Fotográfico y Archivo Historico "Adolfo Alexander"
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A tribute to an undervalued American Classic
The Clarus model MS-35 camera was made and sold by the Clarus Camera Manufacturing Company of Minneapolis, Minnesota USA between 1946 and 1952. The MS-35 was the only camera model manufactured by Clarus. After a management change, the camera was sold under Wescon name . They also prepared a lower priced central shutter model and its original flash received a golden reflector.
It used the most perfect formula of the era, always using the typical American tooling facilities die cast molding, instead of pressed parts:
- Its departure was from the Leica II concept with an enlarged body in order to be easier assembled by unskilled American technicians.
-Adopted the Praktiflex type shutter design to speed production alignment handcraft.
- Used a sturdy body aiming a large market and consumers catching several other market niches,
- Was sold at a low price level to be placed everywhere.
Immediately, it suffered an unjustified attack and kept the fame of being unreliable and a poor performer.
Today surviving units prove they were superior to famous makes of the era.
Three lens outfit at ebay
With Wollensak-Raptar 3.5/35 wide angle and finder
With Wollensak-Raptar 3.5/101mm Telephoto and finder
With Elgeet 4.5/4” Telephoto and shoe synch
Telephoto finder corrector detail from rear
Telephoto finder corrector detail from front
Top mounted Flash
Bottom mounted flash
October 1948 ad at Popular Photography. Directory issue.
Compare Clarus potentialities against top known cameras.
Montgomery Wards 1951 catalog
Tag and lens tissue from camera package
With the Clarus Raptar wide angle
Wescon with Alphax shutter and 4.5 lens. The low price end model
Wescon focal plane Same body parts.
Wescon – Clarus type views and eveready cases Clarus and Wescon