Franke & Heidecke Rolleicord IId Vintage Camera
Franke & Heidecke Rolleicord IId Specifications
|Manufacturer:||Franke & Heidecke|
|Country of Origin:||Germany|
|Camera Type:||Twin Lens Reflex|
|Dimensions (cm):||7.5 x 13.5 x 9.7|
|7.5 x 19.6 x 9.7 (viewfinder open)|
Franke & Heidecke Rolleicord IId Review
The Franke & Heidecke Rolleicord IId was introduced in 1947 as the latest edition to the Rolleicord line, the more affordable version of the Rolleiflex line of premium TLRs. TLRs or Twin Lens Reflex cameras are uniquely equipped with two lenses that do different jobs: one is connected to the viewfinder for composing while the other one exposes the film and takes the photograph.
The vast majority of TLRs are designed to be used with their built-in waist-level viewfinders but many models also include mechanisms that convert them for eye-level use. For some TLRs, this means that part of the viewfinder hood folds away to reveal a square-shaped hole that you can look through but the mechanism in this Rolleicord IId actually engages a second mirror to give you a proper eye-level viewfinder. In short, it’s fantastic.
The Rolleicord has a Heidosmat 75mm f/3.2 finder lens and a Triotar 75mm f/3.5 taking lens made by renowned German lens companies Schneider Kreuznach and Carl Zeiss, respectively. The high speed Compur-Rapid shutter was made by F. Deckel, the famous German shutter manufacturer and has a range of 1 to 1/500 seconds. To focus, you rotate the metal knob on the side of the camera between the two lenses which moves the front plate (not to be confused with the wider film advance knob which is higher up). Around the taking lens are rotating tabs that control shutter speed and aperture while the shutter button is directly beneath it. The brass plug you see in the corner by the taking lens is a sync terminal for flashes.
I had always drooled over Rollei TLRs and I couldn’t afford a ‘flex so I bought this ‘cord on eBay for $65 back in 2004. This then means that the Rolleicord IId has the special distinction of being the first camera in my collection that I’ve ever paid any “serious” amount of cash for. Still, money well spent.
Want one for yourself? Find your very own Franke & Heidecke Rolleicord IId on eBay.
McKeown, James M. and Joan C. McKeown’s Price Guide to Antique and Classic Cameras, 2001-2002. (Grantsburg: Centennial Photo Service, 2001), 582-583.