Héard & Mallinjod
Rare! 1925 Héard & Mallinjod Hémax. CLA’d, Freshly Serviced!
Cleaned, Lubricated & Adjusted. Ready for immediate use
This is a rare brown leather 6x9 Hémax camera produced by the French firm of Héard & Mallinjod in circa 1925. Héard & Mallinjod was a French company and although information about them is sparse, they appear to have been in business from circa 1920 to 1929. They produced cameras under their own Hémax label but also produced them for a few other companies as well. The most notable was Photo-Plait of Paris, who were well known for the quantity and quality of their offerings. Simply put, if you were going to purchase a camera in 1920’s Paris, the odds are high that you would have visited Photo-Plait.
Although Héard & Mallinjod produced various plate and roll film cameras in black leather, the brown leather variants are by far the most appealing to collectors. They are also the most difficult to find. The brown cameras were covered with fine brown leather and fitted with nickel trim. Although this gave them more panache than the plain black ones, the primary reason for this was to make them more resistant to tropical climates. As more and more well-heeled individuals were traveling to exotic destinations aboard steamships, the demand for cameras that could better deal with the heat and humidity increased. The brown leather used on tropical cameras was specially developed to meet this need.
Although this camera is fairly simple compared to later designs developed in the mid 1930’s, it is definitely an eye catcher and it looks great in a camera collection. As I mentioned previously, the Hémax is also pretty rare, which always adds to its appeal, especially among collectors. Another thing that adds to its appeal is that it uses 120 roll film, which of course means you can still use it if you’re so inclined.
This 1920’s era French cameras in fine condition. And thanks to the careful attention we’ve given it, it’s ready to be put to work. The real leather covering is in excellent condition. The bellows are completely light tight. Additionally it’s been carefully cleaned, lubricated and adjusted. The quality Compur dial set shutter works smoothly and all speeds (T, B, & 1 sec – 1/250th ) are appropriate. The slow speeds buzz along smoothly and the fast speeds are clean and snappy.
The lens is a 6.3/105mm Anastigmat Magir Hermagis, Paris It’s a classic design based on the Cooke triplet with three lens elements in three groups. The glass is clean and clear. There are no scratches, just a few light cleaning wisps. (But you’ll need a magnifier to see them.) There are no separated elements, crystallization or other problems and it’s capable of producing lovely photos with modern color and B&W films.
All in all, a lovely vintage camera. An enjoyable companion in the hunt for that perfect shot. You know the one… the one with the Ansel Adams light breaking through the dark storm clouds that leaves you wishing you had a classic vintage camera with you.