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 Nikon Macro Copy Outfit Model PA Copy Stand

Nikon's last and most elaborate rangefinder copy stand



A copy stand in the non thru the lens viewing rangefinder era was no easy task.  Each manufacturer had to have some very precise way of replacing the ground glass viewer with the camera.

Perhaps the most elegant and over engineered was the Nikon Macro Copy Outfit Model PA of 1958 - the year before the Nikon F appeared.

The Nikon PA Copy stand is a marvel of compact engineering. Tightly fitted into the box, the stand assembled onto the reversed box, making it the base of the copying stand! 

It should be emphasized this is a professional quality unit, capable of excellent service for libraries, industrial, or professional photography use.

Nikon Rangefinder PA copy stand, with and without camera and lens.


The rare hood like 50/3.5 MICRO focusing collar is attached to easily change f/stops when the lens is mounted on the copy stand.  The mount will attach to any Nikon rangefinder, and most likely any classic Zeiss Contax rangefinder or Kiev rangefinder.

The PA copy stand has a wonderful precise sliding mechanism which quickly replaces the eyepiece used for focusing and viewing with the copying camera with just the flick of a lever.


Nikon PA copy stand with Nikon S3M, 50/3.5 MICRO lens and focusing collar ready to take pics!


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 The PA is portable, sturdy, and very easy to use.

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Without SLR ground glass focusing, the PA substituted the smoothly working system above. The mounts for the ground glass focusing eyepiece and the camera are connected.  

 Raising one moves the other into position, and vice versa.   Thus you focus on the ground glass as shown on the left, slide the camera body into position as shown in the middle pic, and then take the picture with the camera body precisely in position,

as shown on the right.  A Nikon SP with 50/3.5 Micro and focusing diaphragm collar is shown above.

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The lever at the 5 o'clock position on the camera body locks and unlocks the camera body to the copy stand. Note the built in bellows which allows 1/3 to 1:1 magnification with the 50/3.5, and the incredibly sturdy construction.

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Beneath the large micro collar is the small 50/3.5 Micro Nikkor.   The box for the PA stand is handsomely made  of beautiful hardwood.   These were the days before Nikon discovered the many joys of plastic. 50/3.5 Micro

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The box for the stand opens up, and upside down becomes the copy stand base -- thus the copy stand post mount on the side of the box.  The SP  is shown for scale.   Copy stand courtesy of Bob Knowles.



Nikon prided itself on providing Nikon customers with a complete photographic system.  Four different copy stands were manufactured for the Nikon rangefinder system, each more elaborate than the preceding. 

Nikon Repro Copy Outfit Model S - a simple small metal copy stand without bellows unit.  Introduced 1954.

Nikon Repro Copy Outfit Model SA - a simple copy metal stand with bellows unit.  Introduced 1955?

Nikon Macro Copy Outfit Model P - much more elaborate using the reversed box as the bottom of the copy stand.  Introduced 1955.

Nikon Macro Copy Outfit Model PA - the model shown above, now with a built in bellows.  Introduced 1958.  Produced until about 1962.

Today all Nikon rangefinder copy stands are rare and desirable.  The PA is generally considered the best and most desirable.

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Revised: October 23, 2019 Copyright   2016 Stephen Gandy. All rights reserved.    This means you may NOT copy and re-use the text or the pictures in ANY other internet or printed publication of ANY kind.  Information in this document is subject to change without notice.  Other products and companies referred to herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies or mark holders.