Antique & Vintage Photographic Equipment

New Special Sybil Rollfilm Camera

Newman & Guardia

Name: New Special Sybil Camera
Type: Folding Rollfilm Camera
Manufacturer: Newman & Guardia Ltd
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Construction: Folding bed rollfilm camera, fitted with trellis style side struts to support the lens standard (as with other Sybil models).
Production Period: 1913 - 1935 (possibly later)


Plate / Film Size: Eight, 2 5/16" x 3 11/16" exposures on 120 roll-film
Lens: Ross Xpres 112mm f4.5 No 116088
Shutter: N & G spring powered rotary sector type with pneumatic regulation. Speeds 1/2 - 1/150, B, T
Movements: Rising front, cross front
Dimensions (w x h x l):  
Date of this Example: c1930
Serial Number: Serial A1175 stamped onto focussing slider along with patent dates and inside rear of camera.
  • Common [ ]
  • Uncommon [ ]
  • Hard to Find [x]
  • Scarce [ ]
Inventory Number: 652


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Rollfilm variant of the New Special Sybil, serial A1175. The camera has a black leather covered aluminium body, with black leather bellows. The serial number is marked on the inner edge of the baseboard and inside the back of camera.

Generally the camera is in very good condition; the leather is in very good order. The lens is fitted with a pull out lens hood.

The New Special Sybil was introduced in 1913, but was apparently available over a long period. The date of this example based upon serial / date data on on the Early Photography web site, and the fact that this is a high number in the sequence based on an estimate of 1300 made.

The camera came with its original instructions, although these have split along the fold lines.

The camera is complete with its hide case, lined in green velvet, bearing a Lizars retailers badge inside the flap. The inner leading edge of the baseboard is also inscribed with "J. Lizars, Edinburgh".


The camera also came with a letter to the owner from Wallace Heaton, dated 28 Nov 1941, offering £7 for the camera and stating that "… there is not much demand for these cameras at the present time."

Details of the the shutter layout, components and operation can be found on the Early Photography web site on the page dedicated to providing descriptions and technical details about shutter mechanisms.