Topic: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

Recently I acquired three lenses, a 2.8/35 Flektogon a 2.8/50 Tessar and a 4 / 100 Cardinar, including Werra matic rangefinder camera.

The Werra is a series of 35mm viewfinder or rangefinder cameras manufactured by the well known (for it’s lenses!) Carl Zeiss Jena factory. The Werra is named after a small German river.

The cameras offer a high degree of control with a minimum number of levers, knobs or rings. In their simplest incarnations, the Werras featured only a shutter release button on the top plate. With it's streamlined styling, one could call the Werras a design camera. Nearly all other controls were incorporated into the lens barrel.

The most unique feature of the Werra is the covered ring around the lens barrel. Twisting the ring cocks the shutter and advanced the film in one motion.
http://www.camerapedia.org/wiki/Werra

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4105/5062685975_1c06976287.jpghttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5062685975/

I've tried the lenses with the Canon EOS. A DKL Adapter (cover-Compur) helped: small mouth, nearly same register distance. I held the lenses by hand ...
There will probably never be a commercially-made adapter for Werra-bayonet-mount, because there are not enough attractive lenses: only the three Zeiss lenses.
And it is only the "Cardinar" that is really interesting, because unlike "Flektogon" and "Tessar" it is the "Cardinar" that was ONLY made for the "Werra". An exotic item, for sure!

The images with the Cardinar, all f / 4:
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4105/5064720684_808280e3fa.jpgHttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5064720684/
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4130/5064721370_222de4254f.jpgHttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5064721370/
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4083/5064108263_038fd4e01c.jpgHttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5064108263/
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4147/5064723394_b8ed665a96.jpgHttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5064723394/
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4106/5064724110_d281e12a58.jpgHttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5064724110/

Images with the Flektogon:
f / 8: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4087/5064902212_9704c4c480.jpghttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5064902212/
f/2.8 http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4108/5064289751_afe488d810.jpghttp://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5064289751/

Mechanically spoken the Werra is very well built, everything plays at a good level. A very good rangefinder optics and clever technical details make the Werra an interesting piece of photographic gear.

Since the Werra is not quite my taste in handling I will almost certainly keep nothing from the set.

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

Some pictures to show the form factor of Werra lenses. They could even be adapted to Canon EF - but there is no adapter.

Form factor of Werra equipment - size comparison
http://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5071267522/

Form factor of Werra equipment - size comparison
http://www.flickr.com/photos/praktinafan/5071266024/

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

Fascinating little camera. I only have some problems to keep in mind which viewfinder indications I need to use for the lens I have mounted. And the broken line rangefinder is clear, but not for each subject very suitable. May be because I certainly don't use my Werra III  frequently.
You made nice samples, thanks for sharing!

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

Excellent camera and lenses  , I own the same set as you : very compact though heavy and excellent view/range finder...

I am a Pentacon and kiev( MF and35 mm) user,and also :contaxII,III,IIa  ,contaflex , contarex bullseye ,voigtlander ....

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

I just added some Werra matic film shots to the flickr! set.

One of them:

chairs von praktinafan bei Flickr
chairs von praktinafan bei Flickr

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

As others have said excellent shots and a really nice little camera, but why did you "acquire" it only to not keep it?

I'm working on it!

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

My first rangefinder. I own the E type Werra-matic. Very compact and a pleasure to use. I wonder why it was built for only few years?

I opened the top cover once just to find out that the viewfinder/rangefinder combo is no less complex than a Leica M. It has got proper prisms and condenser lenses instead of half mirror set-ups in cheaper cameras. Moreover, the E type has a brilliant system to display chosen aperture/shutter combination in the viewfinder (along with an exposure meter and the rangefinder). The only issue is the lack of parallax correction and bright automatic framelines.

K.

Leica M2 + Summicron 35 v4, Summicron 50 v4, Elmarit-M 90
CZJ Werramatic + Flektogon 35, Tessar 50, Cardinar 100
Sony NEX-6 + Konica Minolta Dimage Scan Dual IV

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

Wonderful set, superb results..!

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

photoluddite wrote:

As others have said excellent shots and a really nice little camera, but why did you "acquire" it only to not keep it?

Well - I was interested how the camera is constructed.
I think that the handling and the features of a camera (and lenses) do have an influence on how you are making pictures and what pictures you make.

If the lenses would have been very nice (Flektogon aperture is broken) and the camera fully working (lightmeter is dead, ISO inscription is off) I think I would keep the set.

Maybe there will  be a "return of Werra" :-)

Last edited by praktinafan (2010-10-12 20:34:04)

Re: Carl Zeiss Jena: 3 lenses for Werra

Looks really good (as I have written on Flickr). wink

Mostly in my bag ATM: Fuji X-T1, X-E2, X-E1, Leica M8, Nikon1 V1 and several lenses...
Things ON SALE!