Travelling Bessa III returns from it’s first tour

Phil Ramsden has just returned the Bessa III to us after spending a delightful 2 weeks wandering the Northern Beaches and city of Sydney in search of scenes to photograph.

Bessa travels 1

Phil checks out a scene accompanied by his faithful pal Vegemite.

The Adventures of the Travelling Bessa III

My it’s a long way from Tokyo to Sydney but I made it and was delivered to Scott at Mainline. He is a lovely boy and the Store Manager, Rufus is so kind.

They gave me to an old codger named Phil who said he uses film and like a wannabe he started fiddling with me without reading the instructions.
Fortunately I am easy to understand and use and we managed to ingest a roll of Foma ISO 100 easily enough.

Then it was off to Balmoral to see the sights. Phil brought his dog Vegemite, a black Lab who was very interested in everything, she probably thought I was food. It is certainly different to Tokyo. All this sunshine and so warm and it is supposed to be winter. We passed an Asian family taking “images” with one of these new fangled digital things, they giggled when they saw Phil with me. At least I make proper pictures.
Next trip was over to Bondi. Funny place, full of backpackers. The sun was behind the clouds this time but great for beach pictures, Lots of surfers on boards awaiting the perfect wave.

Phil took me around to show me to his friends, he seems to know a lot of proper photographers who use film.
I was greatly admired. Makes me feel good to know people like me.
Thanks  Cosina & Mr Kubiashi.

One thought on “Travelling Bessa III returns from it’s first tour

  1. The travelling Bessa II finished her holiday in Brisbane a couple of weeks ago and then winged her way northwards for some more Queensland lifestyle time.
    Bessy stayed with me for two weeks. She got along fine with the German residents here and in turn they liked her name. We went for long walks in the sunshine together before retiring poolside for margaritas. Bessy is still a little new to this Aussie lifestyle and so only had a bubbycino with sprinkles and extra froth. Perhaps she was still full from her long lunches of Astia, Portra, and Neopan.

    I thought that I would type a few user impressions for those interested.

    Fit, finish and handling:
    Smooth matt black, dare I say the equal of the black chrome on my Leica M. Controls are smooth and have just the right feel for me. Absolutely nothing to complain about. Grey/black rubber like grip is functional and, well, grippy. With the lens and bellows extended I found the right side actually slightly cramped to hold. A good indication of how compact the package is though. Focus by tab and very familiar to a Leica M user. In fact, your left index finger reaches it comfortably while you are holding the camera left side. The finder is huge, bright and undistorted. Again the rangefinder might be straight from Solms. 6×6 and 6×7 frames easily visible in both portrait and landscape hold for me, as is the shutter speed display. Aperture priority or manual, what more do you want?

    Results:
    The nice folks at Horsham Colour processed my Colour neg for me and a roll of Neopan. Thank you Michael. I got back a pile of very generous sized proofs (8×10 paper!) as well as a CD of scans and my negs of course. Worth letting your processor know if you send a mixed set of 6×6 and 6×7 as I did.
    The detail is crisp and the image are smooth, exactly as you would expect from a high quality fixed lens on medium format film. Seems to me that this would be an awfully attractive minimalist landscape kit. I largely used it like an M7. An M on steroids!
    It is possible to provoke flare if you try hard. I suspect that the accessory lens shade would make that a complete non-issue for any reasonable situation.
    Out of interest I shot a roll of Neopan in an old 6×9 Voigtlander folder as well. That one went back into the bottom drawer. This camera I would happily take anywhere and be confident of the quality of the results. Now if I could only figure out where the SDHC card goes, I’m good to go.

    Thank You Scott . I want one!

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