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No. 2 Folding Bull's-Eye (1899)

Kodak Bull's-Eye cameras are all boxcameras, except one: the No. 2 Folding Bull's-Eye. It is not a historical important camera, nor has it any exceptional features. Its best claim to fame is that it is a pretty little instrument.

Some facts:

  • introduced in 1899
  • discontinued in 1901
  • 8000 were produced
  • it uses daylight loading rollfilm
  • it takes square 3.5 x 3.5 inch (9x9 cm) pictures
  • price $ 10

Its settings are as simple as those of the No. 2 Bull's-Eye box, that took the same size of pictures. The lens and shutter are enclosed in the wooden lensboard. On top of this lensboard is a lever to trigger the shutter, which does not have to be cocked. On top is also a pin that can be pulled out a little to make time exposures. At one side of the lensboard is a flat metal strip that can be pulled out to select smaller aperture openings. For normal snapshot work, which was allways done outdoors, these settings were best left untouched.
On top of the body is the small screen of the reflex finder and the key to transport the film. At the back is a red window in which the photographer could watch a number on the back of the film, so that he or she knew how many exposures were made. Even more important was that the photographist new when to stop winding the key: if a new number appeared in the red window, enough film was wound.

The instrument was intended for the snapshooter who only wanted to take a few photographs of a days outing or a happy moment with the children in the garden. Because it is a folding instrument, and also daylight loading, it was especially suitable for tourists.

From: The Lantern Record, monthly supplement to the "British Journal of Photography", November 3, 1899.