Ihagee Dresden macro bellow

In order to be able to adapt a microscope objective on my camera, I’ve purchased an Ihagee Dresden macro bellow. I’ve chosen this one on the advices of Charles Krebs because we need a very rigid macro bellow to get good result with a microscope objective and because it allow a rotation of the camera very useful for framing.

Ihagee dresden exakta macro bellow

Ihagee Dresden Exakta macro bellow



This bellow is built like a tank and very heavy.Mine looks very old, made of cast iron with a beautiful green paint and nice knobs.

Unfortunately, the mount are Exakta bayonet. The front and the back part of the bellow can move on the rail and the tripod mount can also move on the rail to keep the centre of gravity over a tripod.

How to connect this Exakta macro bellow to a more common mount.

To connect the Exakta bayonet mount of the bellow to my Panasonic GH1 (micro four third mount), I’ve found a rather cheap adapter on eBay, this part is the easiest.

For the other side (between the front of the macro bellow and the microscope objective) it’s a little bit more tricky. As I want to put a tube lens and maybe a diaphragm between the objective and the bellow, the more natural way would be to find an adapter from M42 lens to Exakta bayonet mount. I’ve not found any of these adapter on eBay, I think the market is well too low for this kind of adapter.

Here are some tracks I’ve considered :

  • Finding on eBay an adapter for a M42 lens to Exakta bayonet mount : impossible.
  • As the front plate of the bellow  is fixed with 4 screw, it’s possible to replace it with a plate with a M42 female thread. It’s one of the solution used by Charles Krebbs
  • Using the Exakta extension tube set (I’ve already bought one on Ebay for a song). According to Charles Krebbs, the thread of this adapter is M40 x 0.75. It may be used directly with a Mitutuyo BD objective.
  • Using a 42mm step up ring. A 40mm male to 43mm male exist on eBay. But I don’t now what to do next with this 43mm thread.
  • Finding the camera Exa 1B and try to adapt the front lens mount to the bellow, as this camera allow the mounting of M42 lenses (see Wrotniak chapter « lens adapter »). A shame even if 35mm film camera can be considered as pure collectable item today. On the other side, these Exa 1b camera can be rather cheap on eBay. The position of the 4 screw on the Exa 1B lens mount plate seems to match the Ihagee macro bellow.
  • Trying to find a guy who can realise a made to measure adapter.
  • Finding a step up ring or adapter from Exakta bayonet to something else. I’ve been lucky to find in a photo flea market in Cormontreuil one adapter from Exakta to 49mm female thread. As there is no adapter or step down ring from 49mm to M42, I bought a step up ring from 49 to 52 and a step down from 52 to 42 !


  • Charles Krebbs and various different setting using an Exakta macro bellow.
  • Captain Jack’s has a page on Exakta close up equipment with considerations on the Exakta extension tubes and the macro bellow (mine looks like the white Vielzweck / Kolpofot shown on his web page.
  • Pacific rim camera : a page on Exakta / Ihagee bellow
  • A thread initiated by Krebs on photomacrography.net and some discussion on how to restore and fix the macro bellow.
Ihagee dresden exakta macro bellow

Ihagee Dresden Exakta macro bellow


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