The Iloca Rapid III was produced during the late 1950's and is a development of the earlier Rapid I and Rapid II range. This model came equipped with a built-in exposure meter as standard.
In other respects, the Rapid III shares the same features as the earlier Rapid II L model including built-in rangefinder, and coupled aperture and shutter settings based on the light value reading from the built-in exposure meter. However, the controls in the new design appear to be more integrated along the front and top panels, and the shutter button has shifted to the front. The Rapid III continues to use the conventional film advance lever operated by the right thumb. This particular model has the Steinheil München 50mm F2.8 Culminar as opposed the Cassarit lenses used on other Rapid models.
In order to determine the correct shutter and aperture settings, you first need to set the ASA (or DIN) scale to match the film speed. Then, take a meter reading from the appropriate light value scale (there are two light value scales - the outer scale for use with the meter cover closed, and the inner scale with the cover open).
You then match the light value reading on the shutter ring with the indicator dot on the aperture ring - achieved by pressing the tab on the spring-loaded aperture ring towards the camera body and rotating the ring until the correct light value lines up with the dot. Then allow the aperture ring to spring back into place. The aperture and shutter rings are now coupled - in other words, an increase in shutter speed will result in a corresponding decrease in aperture. This may sound a bit complicated - but in practice it is quite convenient and easy to use once you get used to it. Otherwise just manually estimate appropriate shutter and aperture speeds and set them accordingly.
Like other Rapid cameras, the Rapid III model is quite pleasant to hold and has a nice, solid feel to it, and the design of the front panel is more integrated than the previous versions.
One tip for opening the back on these cameras - slide the lever on the back panel in the direction of the arrow. This will cause the rewind knob to pop upwards to its full extension. Then twist slowly clockwise and the springloaded mechanism should release the back. The back on these models is not symmetrical and only fits one way.
A good quality camera capable of producing nice sharp images. Like its earlier Rapid counterparts, it has a nice feel, and seems to be well built and robust.
Specifications: Iloca Rapid III
Camera Type: 35 mm Rangefinder Camera
Format:135 film format producing image sizes 24mm x 36mm
Shutter:Compur–Rapid with speeds 'B', 1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250, 1/500 sec, or Synchro-Compur with speeds 'B', 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1,30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250, 1/500 sec, with M, X Flash settings, and V (Delayed Action setting)
Lenses:Steinheil München Cassarit 1:2.8 / 50 mm, focus range 3 feet (0.9 meter) to ∞, or Rodenstock Ysarex 1:2.8 / 50mm, focus range 3 feet (0.9 metre) to ∞
Aperture:F2.8 to F22
Delayed Action:Approx 10 seconds
Flash Capability:PC Flash Contact
Frame Counter:0 to 36
Other Features:Accessory Shoe, Tripod Mount, Leather Camera Case, Instruction Manual, Box