a loopy idea

T.T.&H., Agfa, Leitz – example loupes

Toronto. I show three magnifier loupes at the left. The first is a Taylor, Taylor, Hobson brass loupe used in the late 1800s to focus a lens on the massive old field/studio cameras so that the subject was sharp on the ground glass. In the above linked post I called it a “no-name” as I missed the tiny T.T.&H. engraved on the second black rim.

In the middle is my favourite AGFA LUPE 8x that I have used for years. Bought new, the acrylic lens and base are as pure as when first made. It is ideal for checking 35mm negatives and slides. Flipped up side down I use it to look at all kinds of tiny objects. Note that Inter Ocular Devices used to replace foggy human lenses in cataract patients (like me) are also made of acrylic plastic known to be clear, flexible, and inert.

And at right is just one of many varieties of Leitz LVFOO loupes. These 5x loupes came in various finishes and where used on the PLOOT and VISOFLEX I mirror boxes as viewers to focus a lens with some precision. Initially, these beautiful all glass loupes were repurposed for use as 35mm negative checkers complete with a neck loop. They were  offered for about $299 which I thought was far too expensive.

Surprisingly, the 5x loupes are now badged Leica at even higher list prices! These loupes, coded as 37 350 were offered as recently as 2017. Different models were made. Today I see them still offered as used or remaindered at even astonishingly higher prices Рwith or without a neck strap.

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