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Argus Serial Numbers

Subject: Revised serial number table
                                    Date: Sun, 15 Mar 1998 22:12:48 -0700
                                    From: "Phillip Sterritt"
                                    
                                    The attached is a revised version of a table taken mostly from Modern Photography Buyer's Guide issues.  There is now info
                                    from both the Dec
                                    1955 and Dec 1956 issues, as well as from what appears to be the 'Photo Dealer Camera Identification Guide' dating (I'm guessing)
                                    from around
                                    1955, and a list published by someone named Ben Miller (I just have a marginally legible photocopy of page 51 of something,
                                    with Ben Miller's
                                    name on it).
                                    
                                    We know that the ranges listed for the Argoflexes are inaccurate or incomplete, there are instances of C3s with serial numbers
                                    outside the stated
                                    ranges, and the noted discrepancy in the start of the range for the model 21, so don't bet the mortgage on any of this.
                                    
                                    Phil Sterritt
                                    
                                    ---<< Attached Table Follows >>---
                                    
                                    Argus serial number ranges per 'Modern Photography' December 1955 and
                                    1956 Camera Buying Guide section 'Photo Dealer Camera Identification
                                    Guide' ca. 1955, and Ben Miller
                                    
                                    model           start           end
                                    -----           -----           ---
                                    A:              1037            211589
                                    AA:             500000          513250 (8)
                                    AF:             5000            70138
                                    A2B:            66215           248601
                                    A2F:            22760           39031
                                    FA:             (1)
                                    B:              (2)
                                    A3:             100000          140980
                                    CC:             (3)     
                                    K:              1001            2928
                                    C:              1000            19077
                                    C2:             19077           91945
                                    C3:             0310001         03690326 (prewar)
                                    10699           Dec 1955:'above 800000 (current)' (6)
                                    Dec 1956:'above 1500000'
                                    Ben Miller: 'above 1736925' (9)
                                    21:             (5)             64785
                                    C4:             230000          Dec 1955:'above 285000'
                                    Dec 1956:'above 500000' (7)
                                    C44:            0044000001      0044006000 (Dec 1956 issue)
                                    0044085000  (9)
                                    C33:            151900101       ?  (9)
                                    C3 Autronic:    2220100001      ?  (9)
                                    
                                    A-four: (1)
                                    C20:            20000000        20003345 and
                                    1401nnnnnn      1401nnnnnn (illegible range) (9)
                                    Argoflex:
                                    -E          750501          896721
                                    -EM         10439           13591
                                    -EF         2506            30520
                                    -40         (4)
                                    19: (10)
                                    
                                    ----------------------------------------------------------------
                                    (1) none -- bears stamped date of manufacture
                                    (2) 'same range as Mod. A'
                                    (3) same numbers as A3 shown, says 'in common with A3 serial numbers'
                                    (4) None. Bears stamped date of manufacture (1st 2 digits - year,
                                    last 2 digits - month)
                                    (5) Dec 1955 guide, Photo Dealer say range starts 19218;
                                    Dec 1956, Ben Miller say 9218
                                    (6) Dec 1956 guide has note about flash synch that refers to models
                                    '...[built] After Jan., 1954 (serial numbers above 964,482)...'
                                    (7) Dec 1956 guide has note about flash synch that refers to models
                                    '...[built] After June, 1954 (serial numbers above 321,000)...'
                                    (8) From 'Photo Dealer Camera Identification Guide' ca.1955 pg. 340
                                    (9) From a realistic looking list by Ben Miller (?)
                                    (10) '19' plus 6 digits
                                    ----------------------------------------------------------------
                                    
                                    Notes:
                                    
                                    1. I have a prewar C3, the serial number of which is C322150
                                    There are also prewar C3s with the 'zero-prefix' serial numbers as
                                    referenced in the list..
                                    
                                    2. In the 'special notes' section on the Model A, it states that
                                    'Plastic camera body came in black (AB), tan (AT), and gray (AG)'
                                    
                                    3. In the 'special notes' section on the Model A2B, it states that
                                     'A2B cameras made after July 1946 came with coated lenses.'    
                                    
                                    4. In the 'Lens' section on the Model C3, it states that
                                    'C3 cameras made after July 1946 came with coated Cintar lenses.'
                                    
                                    5. In the 'special features' section on the Model C3, it lists
                                    'color-coded exposure and distance settings (in latest model only)'
                                    
                                    6. Same comment as in 5. appears with models C4 and A-four. 
                                     This feature was presumably introduced simultaneously on all models?
                                    
                                    7. The only other manufacturers appering in the buying guide for
                                    which serial number ranges are provided are Leica and Rollei.
                                    
                                    8. Ben Miller's list states that the CC 'Army variant' is 'without 
                                    meter, black, front focus, f4.5 lens'