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DUCATI - OD 6406.2 - ARGON 28mm / 4
(OD 6406 - ARGON 26mm / 4)
The Argon lens in the Ducati documentation was referred to as a: "Broad-field objective for architecture, landscape and group projects".
This lens was present in the earliest Ducati documentation of 1946 and shown with a focal length of 26mm / 4 (Ducati code OD 6406). It had an optical scheme consisting of three elements with anti-reflective coating. The lens was of the retractable type and it was coupled directly with the rangefinder of the Dream, but the field of view did not correspond perfectly to that visible in the camera’s viewfinder so a separate sports/view finder was produced.
In the first price list of 1948, the 26mm (non-commercially produced Argon version) was quoted at a cost of 32,000 lire and was not accompanied by any accessories.
In the 1949 price list the Argon lens was shown with the different focal length of 28 mm, and was given the Ducati code OD 6406.2, and was also slightly modified. Also, it was suggested to use the lens with the newly designed viewfinder OR 2403.1 in order to have a correct view of the framed field, which was 56 °.
It had a minimum focusing distance of 0.80 meters and the diaphragm could be adjusted by choosing from 5 possible aperture openings (4-5.6-8-11-16).
This new Argon included various accessories (refer to table), most of which are in common with Vitor 35 / 2.8.
We have never observed specimens of Argon with a focal length of 26 mm, and it is likely that this model was never manufactured commercially. The Argon 28/4 lenses that we have observed all had Ducati code OD 6406.2, and most are with a serial number that started with the number 3, which suggests that they were produced after 1948. Only a very few we have seen with a serial number starting with 0, so they were probably made in a very small quantity in 1947, and are to be considered quite rare.
Observing the serial numbers of a number of these lenses from those that we have been able to find, we are able to estimate that between 90 to 100 may have been produced. Refer to our table below for the data used for these estimates.
Availability: This lens is rarely seen for sale, perhaps once in several years.
Also manufactured was a version of the Argon 26mm / 5.6 lens with diaphragm and fixed focus for use in the Enlarger (OE 6201).
The Ducati Sogno 28mm Argon Lens is the rough equivalent of a 35mm lens on a 'normal' full sized camera. This makes it a great choice for "Street Shooting" but can be used as a 'normal' lens by those that like a wider view.
*The Gelatin Filters were only mentioned in the earliest documentation, and no pricing was mentioned. They are in various “Bright” colors, more intense than the normal glass filters, and much rarer.
Original text and tables above by D. Consonni, with permission. Translated by MasterpieceCamera. © 2018
The following table is a list of known Argon Lenses with the Serial Number and possible number produced in our estimate. Please help us in our efforts to expand this list by sending us any lens serial number/s not in our list so that it will be as accurate as possible, thank you!