Vest Pocket No. 2
posted 4-28-'03

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How to Make Photographs
with the Ansco Vest Pocket No. 2

Do-not open or close or in any way tamper with the mechanism of the ANSCO V-P No. 2 until you read these instructions, unless its workings have been explained to you by the dealer. It is a finely adjusted instrument and works easily, smoothly, and with precision. If any part sticks or refuses to work, it will be a sign that it is not being handled properly. Do not try to force any part.

The ANSCO V-P No. 2 takes a film cartridge for six exposures. The film is designated as 4A ANSCO SPEDEX, which is a standard size in all makes of film and may be obtained all over the world.

Loading with Film
Open the back of the camera by releasing the hinged catch at one end and removing the metal back, so as to have access to the spool chambers.

Next, insert film spool in the spool holder at the end of the camera opposite the winding reel, swing spool holder into position, cut label on spool and unwind enough black paper to insert into slot of empty spool in the winding chamber; give the winding key a few turns to secure the paper and to keep it as taut as possible. The black paper must be threaded straight and should be started absolutely even, for if the paper does not wind true the film will overrun the
To replace the back of camera, hold its body with the left hand, and with the right hand hook the back on the dowels at one end, then close down and fasten the hinged catch. Next, turn winding key to the right until the figure 1 appears in front of the little ruby window.

The Shutter and Lens

The ANSCO V-P No. 2 is furnished with two different kinds of lens equipment, and Extra speed Bionic Shutter. It is necessary to become thoroughly familiar with the working of the shutter before attempting to make exposures if success is to be expected.

The shutter controls the rapidity with which the picture is taken, and the rapidity must vary according to the strength of the light and the size of the opening.

The graduated plate at the top of the shutter indicates the various exposures of which the shutter is capable, expressed in fractions of seconds. The speed is regulated by moving the pointer to the desired position on this scale. The letters B and T. standing respectively for bulb and time, also appear upon this plate, and are explained under the proper headings for bulb and time exposures.

The graduated plate at the bottom of the shutter is for the purpose of regulating the size of the opening of the lens by moving the pointer to the desired position. Moving the pointer from F 11 to F 16, indicates that the lens opening has been reduced one-half, thereby necessitating double the length of exposure, as only one-half as much light can then reach the film. The next larger number indicates an increased diminution of one-half, or to one-fourth the size of F 11 opening, requiring a corresponding increase of exposure time, and so on.

The relation between the larger openings is expressed in the following table:

F6.3 is 1.6 times as large as F8
F7.5 " 2.3 "       "      "    "    F11 
F 8 "   2      ``       ``            F 11

Exposure time should be calculated accordingly. Each of the remaining stops, 11, 16, 22, 32 is just one-half the size of the one immediately preceding it.

The lens equipments are:
F 7.5 Modico Anastigmat
The Modico Anastigmat lens is a lens of general application, which is somewhat faster than a rapid symmetrical lens and the equal in definition, flatness of field and freedom from astigmatism of the most expensive anastigmat lens. It has a working speed F 7.5.

F 6.3 Ansco Anastigmat
The ANSCO Anastigmat lens is an anastigmat of the highest quality. There is no one lens that will do every kind of work equally well, but the ANSCO Anastigmat will do the greatest number of things best. It is of as nearly universal application as possible. Its working speed is F 6.3.
Extra speed Bionic Shutter

This shutter is self-setting, of efficient construction, with concealed and well-protected mechanism.
In addition to time and bulb it has the following range of exposure 1-10, 1-25, 1-50, 1-100 and 1-200 second.

This maximum speed is sufficient for photographing successfully rapidly-moving objects.


Extra speed Bionic Shutter

The diaphragm openings with Modico Anastigmat lens are F 7.5, 11, 16, 22 and 32  With ANSCO Anastigmat lens they are F 6.3 8, 11, 16, 22 and 32.  The shutter is operated by a finger release which may be worked in any position, and in additional has a flexible wire plunger release.  For the benefit of those persons who are unfamiliar with the F (focal) system of lens markings, the following table of Universal System equivalents is given:

F 6.3 equivalent to U. S. 2.6
F 7.5 "                 " U. S. 3.5
F 8 "                    " U. S. 4
*F 11.3 "             " U. S. 8
F 16 '`                 " U. S. 16
*F 22.6 "             " U. S. 32
F 32 "                  " U. S. 64
(The decimals are omitted from the scale on the shutter, on account of lack of space.)

Bubbles in Lenses

It is practically impossible to eliminate small air bells or bubbles in the manufacture of optical glass for anastigmat lenses, because of the fact that in the process of manufacture various chemicals must be fused together a given length of time at a certain temperature. At the critical moment the process must be stopped whether all the air has been driven out or not. This is necessary in order that the optical qualities of the glass may be retained.
The small bubbles are caused by the air left in the glass, and should be taken as a guarantee of quality rather than a detriment to a lens, for the actual loss of light is inappreciable, and the bubbles even when near the surface, have little or no effect on the optical quality of the image or the speed of the


Before making an exposure with an ANSCO V-P No. 2, either time or instantaneous, be sure of four things:

First - That the shutter is set for the proper exposure.
Second -That the diaphragm stop is set at the proper opening.
Third--That the camera is focused.
Fourth--That an unexposed section of film is turned into position.

1. Instantaneous Exposures
All exposures the length of which is less than 1-25 second, which is the slowest possible speed for satisfactory results when the camera is held in the hand, are known as instantaneous exposures.
In making instantaneous exposures, or "snapshots," the following rules apply:

FIRST--Set the top pointer at 1-25, 1-50, 1-100, or 1-200, according to the time of the instantaneous exposure desired.

Note..--If very bright light, set the pointer at 1-200 or l-100, according to the Subject. If less bright light, set it at 1-50 or 1-25, but do not attempt to make any instantaneous exposures below 1-25 second.

SECOND--Set lower pointer at F 11. This lever controls the iris diaphragm, and F 11 is the proper opening for ordinary instantaneous exposures. For instructions concerning the use of stops or diaphragm openings, see page 13.

NOTE. - For instantaneous exposures - when the sunlight is unusually strong and there are no heavy shadows, such as in views at the seashore or on the water, use diaphragm F 16. With light clouds or slightly smoky atmosphere use F 8 at 1-100, or F 11 at 1-25 or 1-SO. With heavy clouds do not attempt instantaneous exposures.

THIRD - Press the release. This makes the exposure.

2. Time Exposures

All exposures made in slower time than 1-25 second are known as time exposures, and it is necessary in all cases to have the camera supported upon something solid, to prevent any movement of the camera, which would result in a blurred picture.
To make time exposures the following rules should be observed:

FIRST - Set top pointer at T (time). This adjusts the shutter for time exposures.

Exposures of 1-10 second can be made automatically by setting the pointer at the point indicated on upper scale of the shutter.

SECOND - Set the lower pointer at F 16, 22 or 32 as desired. For instructions concerning the use of stops or diaphragm openings, see page 13.

THIRD--Press the release. This opens the shutter. When time is up, again press release. This closes the shutter.

3. Bulb Exposures
The term "bulb exposure" is given to time exposures which the operator desires to control by holding the shutter open at will, a single pressure of the release opening the blades of the shutter, which remain open until the pressure is removed.

The following rules govern the making of bulb exposures:

FIRST - Set the upper pointer at B (bulb). This adjusts the shutter for bulb exposures.
SECOND - Set the lower pointer at F 16, 22 or 32, as desired. For instructions concerning the use of stops or diaphragm openings, see page 13.
THIRD - Press the release to open the shutter, and remove pressure to close it. This makes the exposure. The shutter will remain open as long as the pressure is maintained.

NOTE -- Do not oil any part of the shutter. In case of accident return the shutter to your dealer for repairs, or to Ansco Company Binghamton, N. Y.

As a general rule make exposures by pressing the wire plunger and not with the finger release, as the wire release is less likely to jar the camera.


Instantaneous Exposures-- - "Snapshots"
To take instantaneous pictures the object must be in bright sunlight, but the camera should not. The sun should be behind the back or over the shoulder of the operator.

Opening the Front
Holding the camera in the left hand, draw out the bellows with the thumb and middle finger of the right hand. When full extension is reached, the side arms will snap into place,  automatically locking the front at that point.  Open the watch-cover lid that protects the lens by releasing the spring snap at the top of the camera. Attach the wire release by threading it into the socket provided for it, which will be found beside the finger release. The ANSCO is then ready for focusing on the subject.

The ANSCO V-P No. 2 is equipped with a micrometer focusing device consisting of a milled disk and flange which permits accurate focusing for distances of 6, 8, 10, 15, 25, 50 and 100 feet. A small window at the top of the camera contains the focusing scale and pointer. The figures on the scale indicate the distance in feet. If it is desired to use an ANSCO V-P No. 2 as a fixed focus camera, the scale should be set at 25 feet and the diaphragm at F 11, or F 16.

In photographing objects which are at a distance of 25 or 50 feet, it is not necessary to estimate the distance any more than with approximate accuracy. For instance, if the focus is set at 25 feet - the usual distance for ordinary street work - the sharpest part of the picture will be the objects at that distance from the camera, but everything from 15 to 65 feet will be in good focus. For general street work the focus may be kept at 25 feet, but when great sharpness or definition is required on any specific object the exact distance should be ascertained and the pointer moved to the required point on the scale. The best rule to follow in this case is to pace off the required distance. The average person's step is about 3 feet. Do not try to photograph any object nearer the camera than 6 feet, nor moving objects at a shorter distance than 25 feet from the

To photograph a high building at close range, it is necessary to secure a position in an opposite building which will permit the camera to be pointed at the center of the perpendicular lines of the building. If attempt is made to photograph a high building while standing near by pointing the camera upward, the side lines of the building will converge toward the top in the photograph, thus spoiling the picture.

If the object be low down, like a small child or a dog, the camera should be held down level with the center of the object.

Locating the Image

The ANSCO V-P No. 2 is equipped with two brilliant view finders, one for horizontal and the other for vertical pictures. Locate the image in the finder and aim the camera at the object to be photographed. For vertical pictures the camera should be held upright after the focus is set, and the image located in the vertical view finder. Always look into the finder from directly over it, never at an angle.

To make an instantaneous exposure it is simply necessary to press the finger or wire plunger release which opens and closes the shutter with one movement.

After making the exposure be sure to turn a new section of film into position. Turn the key in top of camera slowly to the right until the next number appears before the red window. Three or four turns will be sufficient to accomplish this. The warning hand appears only before No. 1. Repeat the foregoing operation for each picture.

Time Exposures - Interior
To make interior time exposures with the Ansco V-P No. 2, set the camera in such a position that the finder will embrace the view desired. The camera should not be pointed directly at a window, as the glare of light will blur the picture. If all the windows cannot be avoided, pull down the shades of such as come within the range of the camera. The camera should be placed on a table or other firm support. Center the object in the finder and set the shutter at T. One pressure of the release will open the shutter, and another will close it. The length of exposure is largely a matter of practice and judgment, and is governed by the amount of light on the object to be photographed. The length of exposure is also controlled by the size of the lens opening, or diaphragm, used.












NOTED--When the Ansco V-P NO. 2 is to set on a table in upright position, bring down the extension footrest, which is located behind the shutter at the right side of the camera, as shown in illustration on page 10. When the camera is to stand on its side to make a horizontal picture, bring down the lever or footrest located beneath the shutter at the bottom of the camera as shown above.








Time Needed for Interior Exposures
The following table is figured for exposures made between the hours of 10 A. M. and 3 P. M., using diaphragm F 16. If stop F 11 is used, give only one-half the time. If the stop or diaphragm F 32 is used, give four times longer exposure. The smaller the stop, the sharper the picture. F 16 gives the best results for interiors.

White Walls and More than One Window

Bright sunlight outside 4 seconds
Hazy sun                    10 "
Cloudy bright              20 "
Cloudy dull                 40 "

White Walls and Only One Window

Bright sunlight outside 6 seconds
Hazy sun                   15 "
Cloudy bright            30 "
Cloudy dull ,             60 "

Medium Colored Walls and Hangings and More than One Window

Bright sunlight outside 8 seconds
Hazy sun                    20 ''
Cloudy bright             40 "
Cloudy dull                80 "

Medium Colored Walls and Hangings and Only One Window

Bright sunlight outside .....2 seconds
Hazy sun                         30 "
Cloudy bright                  60 "
Cloudy dull                     120 "

Dark Colored Walls and Hangings and More than One Window

Bright sunlight outside 20 seconds
Hazy sun                    40 "
Cloudy bright             80
Cloudy dull 2 minutes 40 "

Dark Colored Walls and Hangings and Only One Window

Bright sunlight outside 40 seconds
Hazy sun                    80 "
Cloudy bright 2 minutes 40
Cloudy dull    5 "           20 "

To Make a Portrait

Place the sitter in a chair partly facing the light and turn the face slightly toward the camera, which should be at the height of an ordinary table. Center the image in the finder. For a three-quarter figure the camera should be from 6 to 8 feet from the figure, and for a full figure 8 to 10 feet. The background should form a contrast with the sitter.

To Obtain a Larger Portrait

Use an ANSCO Portrait Attachment, which consists simply of an extra lens that slips over the regular lens and in no way affects its operation except to change the focus, thus enabling the operator to work closer to the subject. This makes it possible to obtain a larger and sharply defined image on the film.

For all cameras which are fitted with a focusing arrangement the following table applies:

With Focusing Indicator set at

6 ft. place subject at 2 ft. 2 in. 
10                `` '` " " 2 ft. 6 in. 
25 '`  "     "       "      3 ft.
100        "      "     "  3 ft. 6 in.

Time Exposures in the Open Air
Time exposures in the open air may be made provided diaphragm No. 32 is used. Exposures must be a little shorter than for interiors, as

Diaphragm No. 32.
With sunshine                1-5 second
    " light clouds from      1/4 to 1
"     heavy "        " 2 " 5 seconds

Use of Diaphragms
F 6.3 or F 7.5 for exposures at 1-25 second on cloudy or dull days and for speed pictures at 1-200 second.

F 8 for instantaneous exposures on cloudy bright days.

F 11 for all ordinary instantaneous exposures at 1-50 or 1-100 second when the sun shines.

F 16 for instantaneous exposures when the sunlight is unusually strong and there are no heavy shadows, such as in views at the seashore or on the water; also for interior time exposures, the time for which is given in the preceding table.

F 22 for interiors; never for instantaneous exposures.

F 32 for time exposures outdoors. The time required on cloudy days with this diaphragm will range from 1-5 second to 5 seconds, according to the light.

Closing the Camera
Before attempting to close the camera be sure that the milled disk which operates the focusing device is turned to the left to the limit of motion (beyond the mark 100); that the lens cover is closed, and that the footrests, if used, are back in place, otherwise the camera will not close properly.

Remove the wire release by unscrewing it from the camera. Take hold of the side arms with both hands and pull them outward. This will disengage the front and allow it to be pushed back into its proper place flush with the body of the camera.

Removing the Film

No darkroom is required for changing the spools in the ANSCO V-P No. 2. The operation should, for absolute safety, be performed in a subdued light.

I.  When last section of film has been exposed, turn the key five half turns.

II. Provide an extra spool of film to fit the camera, and take a position by a table as far as possible from any

III. Remove the back from the camera as directed on page 1.

IV. Holding the black paper taut, so as to wind tightly, turn the key until the paper is all on the reel.

V. Fold over half inch at end of black paper (so as to make subsequent breaking of the seal easy) and then seal with the gummed sticker that will be found on the empty spool.

VI. Swing winding key with spool holder outward and remove the exposed roll by springing out the ends of the spool holder.

VII. Wrap up the exposed film immediately to prevent the possibility of admitting light.

VIII. Take the empty spool from the spool holder and place it in the other holder to form the winding reel. The slotted end of the spool should first be placed upon the end of the winding key and then the other end inserted on the spool pin.

IX. Reload as directed on page 1. The roll of exposures can now be mailed or taken to the dealer for finishing or you can do the developing and printing yourself.

Developing and Printing
The ANSCO FILM BOOK is a complete treatise on the art of making perfect negatives.

The CYKO MANUAL is a 64-page handbook on print making.

These books are both free on application at any ANSCO store, or to


ANSCO SPEEDEX FILM--The Film which combines speed and quality. Obtain an Ansco Speedex Film Booklet for complete directions in making perfect negatives.

CYKO PAPER--After the negative comes the finished print. The Cyko Manual is a complete text book on the art of producing perfect prints.

YOURS FOR THE ASKING  - If you have neither of the above mentioned books and your dealer is out of them, write to us for one or both.

ANSCO CHEMICALS--For best results on Ansco Speedex Film and CyRo paper use Ansco chemicals. They are carefully standardized and compounded under the supervision of expert chemists.