Ticka camera (1905-1914)

Toronto. If you enjoy a mystery set in the 20s, Frankie Drake on CBC fills the bill. In some episodes, she or her team use a tiny spy camera called a Ticka. The Ticka was sold from about 1905 to 1914 – the eve of WW1. It is a British camera made by Houghton and is a licensed copy of the Expo Camera made in the Big Apple (NYC).

The tiny marvel takes 25 16x22mm shots on a small strip of film. The simple meniscus lens in the “winder” is about f/16 with a focal length of 30mm, or slightly telephoto in effect. The rudimentary shutter offers I (instantaneous – about 1/25 second) and T (time). It’s basically a box camera.

The camera was generally chrome-plated with a special solid silver version (expensive). A rare focal plane shutter model was made at one point (even more expensive). The tiny film demanded its own enlarger. Like any expensive collectible, Tickas were counterfeited and sold to gullible collectors.

This entry was posted in camera and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.