Chris's camera pages
Kodak Retina Reflex (type 025)
Manufactured from 1957 to 1959, this was Kodak's first 35mm SLR camera. It has a 50mm f/2 lens and leaf-blade reflex shutter. This model uses the "C" type lenses common to the Retina IIc & IIIc rangefinder models, and with this type of lens the rear group of elements were built into the shutter. As a result only the front group was exchanged.Just like the rangefinder models, this camera was available with either a Rodenstock Heligon or a Schneider Xenon standard lens, and if using one of the wide angle or telephoto lenses they must be of a matching type. Fortunately the mounts are keyed to prevent fitting the incorrect type.The two focal lengths of lens available were an 80mm, and a 35mm. Both lenses had a maximum aperture of f/4. Although it is technically possible to use the 35mm f/5.6 lens, the finder image would be quite dim and focusing would be awkward.The uncoupled exposure meter is just like the one used on the Retina IIIC camera.
One variation I have noticed is that earlier production models lack the focus knob on the knurled focus ring at the rear of the shutter housing.
The Retina Reflexes are mechanically quite complex and since they have rarely been serviced in historically recent times, they are often found in less than perfect mechanical condition, and may be suffering from a variety of problems as a result.