Hansa Self-Timer from the 1950s and its relationship with Canon

Before built-in self-timers were available on cameras there had to be a way to remotely trigger the shutter so that the photographer could get into the picture or to prevent camera shake when shooting at slow shutter speeds. That’s where this little gizmo came in (and dozens more like it).

They’re very popular with classic camera collectors and this gem sold within 24 hours of listing it in my camera shop (www.ccstudio2380.com).

More than likely only a few manufacturers made these things for other companies and collecting all of the different models and versions can be a whole fun branch of camera collecting.
They simply screwed into the shutter button just like a cable release and with the action of a mechanical timer would fire the shutter. Usually anywhere from 5 to 10 seconds or just enough time to get in the shot.
Hansa refers to the Omiya Photo Supply Company. Please see http://camera-wiki.org/wiki/%C5%8Cmiya

Interestingly back in 1936 the first Canon camera made after their name change from “Kwanon” had the word “Hansa” engraved on the top of the camera and that camera is commonly referred to as the “Hansa Canon”. To my eye the way Hansa is written on the case of this timer is the same as Hansa was engraved on the Canon. The “H” and “A” being slightly modified by the 1950s. Certainly the “S” is spot on. For more about this bit of interesting Canon history please visit https://www.canonrangefinder.org/Canon_Hansa.htm

So if you’re looking to collect something different from the 1950s and it’s related to photo gear, then these self-timers can provide hours of fun searching and researching. Heck, I’ve seen the Hansa timer in about every color case you can imagine from this striking green to blue, and yellow!

By the way, the little “Hc” in the circle just may relate back to “Hansa Canon”. Something to think about.

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

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