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06-23-2011, 02:51 AM   #1
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1958: when Sears sold Asahi




Tower 22 = Asahiflex IIA
Tower 23 = Asahiflex IA or IIB
Tower 26 = Asahi Pentax - the original "AP" or Asahi Pentax S, the only difference being the shutter speed sequence

Tower 26 with f/2.4 preset Takumar went for $165.00

Sears also sold the following Takumars:
35/2.5 $48.50
58/2.4 $58.50
83/1.9 $78.95
135/3.5 $58.95
500mm/5 $198.50

06-23-2011, 08:54 PM   #2
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The Bellowscope cost US$17.50 then! I paid US$21 for mine last year! I was robbed!

We should note that Sears also sold Canon and Agfa and Ricoh gear, rebranded. Not to mention all those nifty Tokina and Tomioka lenses. 'Yay Sears!
06-24-2011, 10:12 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
We should note that Sears also sold Canon and Agfa and Ricoh gear, rebranded.
Not always rebranded! See these scans from the same catalog on Jussi's Flickr account:

Sears, 1958 (Kodak and Ricoh!)

Sears, 1958 (Kodak, Ansco(Agfa), Minolta, and Zeiss!)

Sears, 1958 (Canon!)
Back then and well into the 1970s, Sears sold an extensive range of name-brand cameras in addition to their Tower and Sears house brands that included the above as well as Leica, Rollei, Voigtlander, and Nikon.


Steve
06-24-2011, 11:15 AM   #4
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Indeed I've posted Leica/Nikon range finder / Contax ... and Rollei... and the Tower 35 Nicca Leica clone, all from '58. Once I'm done with that catalog, I have another one, seems like it may be from '61. (for some reason Sears didn't put the year anywhere easily visible) It is interesting to see the camera market move over the 3 or so years.

06-24-2011, 03:11 PM   #5
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Very cool!

Interesting that I am going through a year's worth of 1958 Modern Photography + a December 1957 Modern Photography + January 1958 Popular Photography and there is no mention of Tower.

However, I bought these specifically for the original Asahi Pentax and what were available in the year of it's introduction and it's interesting to see the state of 35mm then.

06-24-2011, 03:46 PM   #6
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Fantastic! I enjoy reading these old magazines - and posting the ads on flickr - just to see what the trends and ideas of the time were. That's a GREAT stack O magazines!
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