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About Wollensak

Wollensak lenses were, during their time, and still are considered to be excellent lenses. They were manufactured in America by Wollensak Optical Company between 1902 and 1972, a company which was the second to break off from Bausch and Lomb. Wollensak’s movie camera lenses included Cine Velostigmat and Raptar lines. In addition to camera lenses, Wollensak made shutters for large format field cameras.

Notably, Wollensak improved the development of the 16mm Fastax high speed rotating-prism camera (originally developed by Bell Labs) so that it could capture 10,000 frames per second. On July 16, 1945, a Fastax camera was used by the United States Army in the Trinity experiment, the first nuclear weapons test of the atomic bomb.

After World War II, the American Bolex Company also supplied Wollensak lenses, in addition to Kerns, for Bolex Cameras. Wollensak reached the height of their popularity in 1958 and were widely used by amateur movie makers (as they were less expensive than Kerns, yet still excellent in quality).

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