The world's smallest subminiature photo camera.
Amazing item - but unfortunately we can't check if the camera works!!!
The PETAL is the smallest subminiature photographic camera in the world. It was manufactured in 1947 or 1948 by the PETAL Optical Company of Japan (St. Peter Optical Company) and was intended for inconspicious photography. The camera can take six exposures onto a film disc that could be inserted in daylight, but was difficult to operate due to its size and fixed shutter speed.
The PETAL camera was introduced in late 1947 or early 1948. Being slightly larger than a 2 Euro coin, it was the smallest camera in the world at the time, and this is still the case today. It can take six circular exposures of 6 mm each onto a 25 mm film disc which is pre-loaded in a special cassette that can be inserted in full daylight.
The image on the right shows a typical round PETAL. As the inscription suggests, it was made shortly after WWII, during the occupation of Japan (1945-1852) . The camera fits the palm of a hand and is smaller than the Minox Riga.
PETAL subminiature camera
The camera has a fixed focus 12 mm (f/5.6) lens. The required exposure (1 of 6) can be selected by rotating the rear half of the body of the camera. The numbers 1 to 6 are engraved in the rear half, and should be lined up with a dot on the front half, where it 'clicks' into place. When shooting pictures, the small viewfinder at the top can be used as an aid.
In the late 1940s and the 1950s, the PETAL camera became a hot item for Private Investigators in the United States. Having a PETAL, raised your profile as a successful PI . At the time, the PETAL was sold for approx. US$ 10, which was about a week's pay back then.
- Sakura Seiki :
- Numero di modello/tipo
- Petal round, rare subminiature camera made in Japan by St. Peter Optical Company, c.1947/48
- Tipo di oggetto/dispositivo
- Fotocamera spia
- Buono (usato e funzionante con segni d’uso visibili)
- N° di dispositivi principali