Early in 1939, Ensign Ltd. introduced what was to become one of Britain's most popular cameras. Fondly remembered by many photographers as their first camera, often bought for them by their parents while they were still children. The Ensign Ful-Vue was a design which immediately captured the publics interest, an interest that has lasted even until today as this is still camera that is widely collected, regarded by many as a design classic.
Originally designed in the Bauhaus tradition of 'form follows function' this first Ful-Vue is a simple pressed steel box camera with a crystalline enamel finish. Its large reflex view finder gave, according to Ensign, "... a better idea than ever before of what the finished result is likely to be,.."
It is equipped with the patent Ensign 'all distance lens' which enabled close-up photography down to a distance of 3 feet by means of a pull out lens mount and had a simple I.T shutter. The camera was designed to give one picture size of 6 x 6cm allowing for 12 pictures on a 120 roll film, because of this only one viewfinder was necessary and the small picture size gave more room at the top of the camera body, enabling a larger view finder to be built with a lens of almost an inch in diameter. This gave the camera one of the brightest view finders of the time, better even than some of the more expensive reflex cameras available.
The shutter works correctly and the cosmetic condition is very good with just the odd bit of missing black paint (see photos). The camera comes with its rarely found original retail box, which is in good condition apart from a tape repair on one side (see photos). The original manual is also provided, which has loose pages but is complete and useable. The original leather neck strap is also provided and in good condition.
A pre-WWII classic, which is nearly 80 years old, but is still working and full of retro charisma. A great collector's piece and will work if you fancy having fun with it.