Rare cameras are often very old, or specialist cameras, for the simple reason that less of them were probably made. Antique cameras may also not survive or not survive intact.

I am most interested in very early cameras and these tend to be made of wood and brass. Sometimes woodworm is a problem but brass also deteriorates with age and use. Wooden cameras can also be subject to alterations that detract from the authenticity of the camera.

One example from my collection is a Pyne wood and brass bellows camera. It started life as a stereo camera but at some time had been cut through vertically to make a mono camera. The result was a fully operational mono camera that was left with tell-tale signs of having been adapted for a different sort of use, possibly to make the camera more economical.

The important thing is to know what you have and what, if any, change shave been made. Lenses and lens mounts have frequently been changed and unlike my camera, mono cameras are often converted to stereo cameras as the demand for stereo cameras is currently high.

I am keen to buy very old cameras and camera equipment. Selling an antique camera to me would save you a great deal in charges, such as auction costs. I am looking to add to my collection of early cameras, including daguerreotype, sliding box, wet plate and wood and brass cameras.

I can be contacted on 07435 963403.

Graeme Swain