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Changzou Hongmei HM-1
France Version française
Photos by JM text by JM. From the collection of JM. Last update 2013-12-31 par Sylvain Halgand.

Manufactured or assembled in China from (Before) 1970 to (Circa) 1980.
Index of rarity in France: Rare (among non-specialized garage sales)
Inventory number: 2345

See the complete technical specifications
Chronology of cameras Changzou 

Hong (红- red) Mei (梅- plum) therefore means Red Plum . It is no surprise red , lucky color in China, Mei could also mean plum flower.

Produced by the Changzhou Main Camera Factory in Changzhou ( northwest of Shanghai) , Hong Mei HM -1 is a classic horizontal folding 6 x 6, but with a dual- format (4 1/2 x 6 vertical) . A small hinged mask allows you to change the format at the time of the introduction of the film. On a film 120 , 12 frames may be performed in 6 x 6 and 16  when chosing the reduced vertical format. There , on the back, two inactinic windows are protected by a single sliding door indicating 12 and 16 exposures depending on the window .

The Hong Mei camera presented here have a twin brother from another factory in Shanghai (Shanghai Camera) : the Shanghai 202 whose cover is different but the body , shutter and lens look identical . There is also a Hong Mei TLR (Hong Mei -5).

The flash shoe is offset (left when holding the camera in hand) . To the right, a cocking lever, modern, made of black plastic , like on a reflex . The viewfinder is placed slightly to the left . The cover is shiny metal , it has the shutter release button, next to the cocking lever and the button ensuring the automatic "ready to be used" ( opening the bed and deployment of the bellows ). The unit rest well when deployed , which is useful since there is a self timer , it does not need a crutch .

This device , which works perfectly and has its ever ready case, was purchased from Kunming (Yunnan ) in November 2007. Together with the Seagulls, it is a quite common camera on the Chinese flea markets , It may be found occasionally on retail sites on the Internet.

Changzou Hongmei HM-1