Leo does Leica

Leotax version of a Leica screw mount camera post WW2

Toronto. After WW2, the Japanese optical industry tried to get in to the mighty American retail market. One option was to copy German cameras at much lower prices. This was the choice that Showa Kogaku made (later this maker became Leotax before disappearing in the early 1960s).

Showa Kogaku had practice – its cameras were first manufactured during WW2 copying the Leica II and III. The Leotax  camera shown here is in the 2000 serial number range and is marked ‘Leotax special’ by ‘Showa Kogaku’ on the top plate.

The lens body and mount imitate the design of the f/3.5 5cm Elmar. The lens is engraved as the ‘Letana Anastigmat’ with same speed and focal length as the Elmar. A worthy addition to collections featuring Leica copies. Don’t have one? Terrific! There is one in the Port Colborne auction this weekend, complete with a leather case needed for its strap (no strap lugs on this version).

NB. The auction is in the memory of the late John Kantymir whose collection is the source of the pieces to be auctioned.

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