The Pentacon Six System
Lens Data Summary
Novoflex Lenses and Focussing Grips
for the Hasselblad
The Novoflex Fast-Focus grip and lenses on a Hasselblad 1000F or 1600F
Dimensions for using the grip and lens heads on other Medium Format cameras
are shown in the table below the drawing.
Dimensions & Potential Camera Mounts
In August 2019 I received from Martin Grahl of Novoflex further fascinating information on the Novoflex fast focus grip and lenses for medium format cameras. A company drawing shows the dimensions for the pistol grip and its camera mount.
The diagram at the top of this page shows the dimensions of the Pigriff 6×6, along with the necessary depth for the camera mount. In the drawing, the 500mm Tele-Noflexar lens (here labelled “KS - 500”) is shown in its pistol grip focussing mount mounted onto a schematic representation of a Hasselblad 1000F or 1600F. Dotted lines show how far forward from the grip the 240mm Noflexar lens (here labelled “K-240”) would extend.
The key dimensions are:
Of all the cameras listed, only the Praktisix is marked with a note. The English translation of that note is:
“Instead of the adapter ring the 6×6 bellows unit mounted upside down can also be used.” In the event, Novoflex decided to redesign the bellows, which would no longer need the extra two rails at the bottom with the focussing slide. (You can see the standard Novoflex 6×6 bellows here.) In the Novoflex marketing, these special bellows received the name “TISBIG–U”. The company internal name was “BAL–U 6×6”.
Martin Grahl comments, “The attached drawing shows us that in fact the Praktisix has been the only camera for which it was feasible to build these special bellows. Even though there have been cameras with a slightly shorter flange distance.” Of course, lenses and bellows that fit the Praktisix also fit the Pentacon Six.
|A Novoflex Follow-Focus Grip for Hasselblad
500C and other Medium Format Cameras without a Focal
We said here the following:
“Novoflex lenses and Follow-Focus grips did not have a built-in shutter, and they were therefore only suitable for SLR cameras with focal plane shutters. Since the 1960s this has included nearly all 35mm-format SLRs. For Medium Format cameras, only those with a focal plane shutter could use the Medium Format Novoflex system. This included the Praktisix, Pentacon Six, Norita, Bronica, Asahi Pentax 6 × 7 and the Hasselblad 1600F and 1000F, but of course not the Hasselblad 500C, which was introduced in 1957, after which the 1000F was discontinued (the 1600F had been discontinued earlier).”
However, Novoflex company records reveal that there was a proposal to make a Novoflex Follow Focus version of a long lens with a built-in leaf shutter. This would have been suitable for the Hasselblad 500C, the subsequent Hasselblad 500C/M and other camera bodies from Hasselblad and possibly from other manufacturers that did not have a focal plane shutter in the body, and so required a lens with a built-in leaf shutter. (Decades later, Hasselblad gave to this range of cameras the designation “Hasselblad V-type cameras”.)
However, the lens heads for the subsequent fast-focus systems, PIGRIFF-C and D versions, had a large enough image circle to cover the 6×6 format so this newer system was offered for some medium format cameras that had focal plane shutters. Unfortunately, by that time the Pentacon Six was no longer being marketed in Western countries and people in communist bloc countries, including East Germany, would never have obtained the Western currency necessary to buy these items in the West, so NOVOFLEX does not appear to have offered a Pentacon Six mount for the new grip.
I am grateful to Martin Grahl of Novoflex for the information given here and the images and text reproduced below. I give my translation below.
Translation of the above text:
“The Novoflex 6 × 6 C f/5.6 400mm fast-shooting lens on the Rollei-SL-66. With this, many friends of Medium Format can also use the advantages of a fast-fire lens.”
Translation of the text to the right:
“The Novoflex 6 × 6 C f/5.6 400mm fast-shooting lens in use on the Hasselblad 2000 FC.”
“[These lenses] can be supplied under the following code words with fixed mounts for various 6×6 and 4.5×6 cameras:
For Medium Format cameras like the newer models from Rollei and some other cameras, which do not have a focal plane shutter, there are no fast-shooting lenses from Novoflex.”
For more details of the PIGRIFF-C system for medium format cameras, see the publicity sheet reproduced below.
Novoflex leaflet on PIGRIFF-C courtesy of Martin Grahl of NOVOFLEX, Memmingen
|The lens advertised here is
the 400mm f/5.6 triplet. It is shown with the
Hasselblad 2000F, which has a focal plane shutter.
Unfortunately, for the reasons indicated above, this lens
and grip were never offered with a Praktisix/Pentacon Six
We see here the official NOVOFLEX English-language terminology for these lenses: “Rapid-Follow-Focus-Lens”.
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© TRA February 2022 This page includes some
information that was previously elsewhere on this website.