Antique & Vintage Photographic Equipment

Koi Xit Camera

J F Shew and Company

Name: Koi Xit Camera
Type: Strut Camera
Manufacturer: J F Shew & Co
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Construction: Strut camera of leather covered mahogany construction.
Production Period: Unknown


Plate / Film Size: ¼ plate
Lens: Goerz
Shutter: Koilos T, B, I (1 - 1/85)
Movements: None
Dimensions (w x h x l):  
Date of this Example: c1907
Serial Number: No  obvious serial
  • Common [ ]
  • Uncommon [ ]
  • Hard to Find [ ]
  • Scarce [x]
Inventory Number: 461

<Photographs to be added>


The Koi Xit is an unusual leather covered ¼ plate strut type camera with black bellows, but essentially the same as the normal Xit. This example has top and side mounts for the additional (separate) viewfinder. Round patent badge on solid side strut reveals the name of the camera. Channing & Dunn [2] identify that this model dates to 1907 and that it is fitted with a Goerz lens, but curiously the lens itself is unmarked. The Koilos shutter is very attractive as the aluminium face carries etching marks.

The ground glass is split in two, but appears to be a neat split rather than a breakage - curious! It has two double slides with it, both numbered 9 / 10, carrying no obvious makers mark, but look to be contemporary to the camera. It has a tripod mount and its original good quality hide case, carrying a retail badge for Ross Ltd, 31 Cockspur St, London.

The finder is in good condition and appears contemporary to the camera. There is also a 2 way spirit level that is also probably original.

The camera came with a separate colour filter to go over the lens and a box of VP plates with one contact print (the box is for "Taking Screens for Paget Colour Photography").


The camera was advertised as a Xit-Day, the only leather covered variant described in McKeown, but is clearly identified as a Koi Xit on the label.