Mamiya 135

This is another of my collection of very similar rangefinder cameras. Like the GAF Memo 35ET and Chinon 35EE it has a brightline viewfinder fitted with a superimposition rangefinder coupled to the focus ring on the lens barrel. It is also fitted with a very similar lens to the GAF being a 38mm f2.8. The shutter is the same as fitted to the GAF and I suspect the Chinon 35EE too. The metering and battery arrangements are the same as well on all three cameras. The Mamiya 135 is fitted with a leaver-operated self-timer mounted in the traditional position on the front of the camera body alongside the lens. One slightly annoying feature is the flashmatic system setting which does not have the guide numbers engraved on the control ring, it merely provides four detents marked with a dot. The camera does not feature a B setting for the shutter but at least this means that the user cannot set it by accident as one can on the GAF Memo 35ET.

In use the camera is a delight. It is very well made and finished. The shutter makes a quiet but definite click. The viewfinder is excellent and fast to use. I like this camera very much.


The camera was bought as a non-functioning example via ebay. Its cosmetic condition was good and the shutter would fire at about 1/30th second at full aperture but the meter would not respond. I suspected that the problem would be the corrosion of the battery contacts and that cleaning these and a new 675ZA zinc air cell would solve the problem. I used a very small piece of very fine wet or dry abrasive paper fixed to the top of an old pencil to remove the thick layer of corrosion, grinding it back to bright brass. However, fitting a new cell didn’t result in a working meter and shutter. The next thing to do was to remove the bottom plate by unscrewing the three small screws on the base. This gave access to the inside base of the battery well and I could then unscrew the pair of screws which held the lower battery contact in place. This came straight out and I could immediately see that the problem was caused by the contact wire, which conducts the power to the metering system, having detached itself from the battery contact plate. This was because the wire itself had corroded in the lower quarter inch. I therefore cut back the wire to a good section about one half inch from the end and added a short extension wire made from some telephone cable. This was soldered in place and the join insulated with a short piece of cable sheath. The battery contact was then soldered to the wire and put back in place. I had to readjust the slightly longer cable so that it didn’t foul the shutter mechanism but this was quite straightforward. The other items that needed replacement were the foam rubber light seals and this was done in the same way that I had approached the seal replacement in the GAF Memo 35ET. The seals in both cameras are exactly the same.


Specifications Mamiya 135 Made in  Japan
Camera Type 35mm EE zone focusing camera with between-the-lens shutter
Film Format 24x36mm
Lens Mamiya Sekor 38 mm f/2,8 (4 elements, 3 groups),
Filter Size 46 mm
Focusing Range 1 m to infinity
Shutter Speeds 1/30th second to 1/650th second. Automatic programmed aperture & speed selection
Exposure Meter Type Single CdS cell located above the lens element. Programmed aperture & speed selection
Film Speed Range ISO 25 (DIN 15) to ISO 400 (DIN 27)
Viewfinder Information Brightline frame, Parallax correction mark
Focusing System Rangefinder focusing in viewfinder
Synchronization Flash Built-in "X" synchronization @ 1/25 Second - "X" contacts in Hot Shoe and PC socket  Flashmatic system with aperture determined with the selected GN (10 - 40 in Meters) and the focusing distance. No GNs marked on the setting ring though.
Loading Film Standard 35mm 135 loading
Advance Film Single-stroke, Built-in double exposure prevention
Self Timer  Yes
Battery One 1,35 volt Mercury battery PX675 - Use 675ZA (1.4v Zinc Air)
Dimensions 113 X 73 X 54 mm
Weight 420 g


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