I don't know about you, but sometimes I follow interesting auctions on eBay just to find out what will happen. So look what just sold for a respectable $3,000:
(Note: the link won't be permanent.)
The Apo-El 105 is one of the very few true apochromats available to photographers, and one of the few fully diffraction-limited lenses money can buy. It's arguably the very best enlarging lens for medium format to 6x6, especially if you're working in color, and no slouch for 35mm, either. (Rumor has it that Uncle Arthur K. has one of these cast in lucite on his desk. I've never seen a picture to prove it, though, and the Old Aviator has been known to pull a leg or two.) Somewhere, some darkroom worker is rejoicing over the acquisition of a treasure.
Chances are Ctein will have an interesting comment on this post. If he chimes in, I'll post it.
Featured Comment by Roger: "Don't forget that Art also proclaimed that his 105 would be buried with him. I suspect that he meant it...."
Featured Comment by Arthur Kramer: "I'm not dead yet. In fact my entire WW II crew of the B-26 Willie the Wolf are all gone now. I am the last man standing of that brave crew."
344th Bomb Group
Bombardier on B-26 Willie the Wolf
England France Belgium Holland Italy Germany
Mike replies: Hi Arthur! So what about that lens...do you really have one cast in lucite? I should remember, but it's been a long time since those days on CompuServe.
Art Kramer standing by Willie the Wolf, from his website.
It was the 344th that led the 9th Air Force into battle on D-Day.
Featured Comment by Walter Dufresne: "My top five most vivid pictorial memories from a quarter century ago include focusing oil-mounted Kodachrome transparencies—including Helen Levitt's—in Frank Tartaro's dye transfer shop in New York City. Frank used Apo El Nikkors in several focal lengths. Studying the projected transparency through a high-resolution grain focuser was thrilling. Thank you, Frank, Helen, and Nikon."