Gilde 66-17 MST Super 3D

Medium Multi–Format Panoramic Camera

Gilde 66-17 MST Super 3D Multi Format Panoramic Camera

Rare German medium multi-format panoramic film camera Gilde 66-17 MST Super 3D, providing a wealth of integrated instruments, for 6×6cm to 6×17cm exposures on 120/220 roll film, extremely solid and precise construction, with panoramic lens board and Super-Angulon 5.6/90mm XL-110°, made to customers order with tilt and shift functionality, incl. original focusing screen, motor grip, special lens hood, multi-format viewfinder, original plastic case.

Gilde subsequently developed a Super-Panorama-Format Magazine allowing formats up to 6×23cm.

Gilde 66-17 MST Super 3D range of projection and features is second to none – tilt and shift functions, enormous range of focal lengths, magazines and unique accessories such as stereo-photography and motor-drive.

Film Magazine

An exclusive specialty of the Gilde 66-17 MST 3D is the magazine which can be removed at all times – even in the middle of a film – after being closed light-tight via catches on the outside. This makes it possible to monitor the exact composition of a picture through the rear diffusing screen. The light-tight magazine shutter is secured with a permanent magnet. The extra catches usually found on other cameras are not necessary.

A large platen ensures that the film is uniformly and precisely flat.

The film is transported by means of a non-slipping film transport wheel, in order to prevent the film from being wound back and to guarantee absolutely precise transport throughout the whole length of the film. The proper film transport can be checked via an inspection glass in the rear removable panel of the magazine - the numbers on the backing paper of the 120 roll film can easily be seen.

Super-Panorama-Format Magazine 6×23

This magazine can be mounted to the camera without any modification of the camera housing being necessary – the magazine is mounted instead of the normal magazine format 6×6 or 6×17.
The Super-Panorama-Format film magazine can only be used with a Schneider Super–Angulon 5.6/90 XL lens if the full shift range of the camera is required.
The magazine is for use with 120 and 220 films. An electronic counter is required for 220 films.
In order to save space, the 6×23 magazine has not been equipped with sliding covers – the magazine cannot be removed in the middle of a film, and viewing through the diffusing screen is only possible prior to attaching the magazine to the housing.

Motor Drive

The motor drive for the GILDE camera is simply and quickly plugged into a socket specially mounted on the camera housing. The motor is attached by means of a single thumb–screw. The core of this drive motor is a finely engineered iron-free motor with precision gears, made in Switzerland. The motor housing is mounted on a 5mm aluminum bracket to prevent twisting. The motor is triggered via a button on the handle and transports 6×17 formats in less than 3 seconds; for medium format cameras this makes it a very fast motor drive - 6×6 takes 0.9 seconds.
The rechargeable 7.2 volt battery is located in the handle of the motor; one charge is sufficient for approx. 90 120 films or for approx. 60 220 films. The motor is controlled via the counter which receives impulses from a sprocket connected to the film guide reel. Film lengths exact to within 1mm are registered and formats from 6×6 to 6×23 can be used. The motor also makes it possible to select any format in the middle of a film.

Electronic counter

An electronic counter is available and this makes the use of 220 films possible.

Premiered at the Photokina 2000, with settings for all five formats – the picture number and length of the film are displayed. Magnetically controlled sensors automatically inform the counter which format has been selected. The counter could also work in tandem with the motor drive for rapid film transport, as required for aerial photography.


Gilde's shift mechanism frequently push the large negative lenses available on the world markets to their limits. When the camera is positioned horizontally (landscape format), each of the five formats can be shifted upwards or downwards. When the camera is positioned vertically (portrait format), a shift board is used (focal lengths : 72, 90, 110, 120, 135 and 150mm) to allow a shift of 35mm upwards; this board can be swiveled to allow a shift of 35mm downwards. All formats can be shifted in this manner with the exception of 6×6 – for technical reasons this cannot exceed 28mm. With this camera it is also possible to re-position smaller formats such as 6×6, 6×9 and 6×12 without using the shift board.


When the camera is positioned horizontally (landscape format), the depth of field can be extended by swiveling the optical axis 100 upwards or downwards. The film magazine can be removed at all times – even in the middle of a film – to allow precise control of the picture through the rear diffusion screen. When the optimal tilt position is reached, it can be locked by means of a locking lever. The zero position is secured via a ball–catch and additional screw–in locking device.


The viewfinder is composed of two parts, an optical viewfinder and a mechanical frame. Two bubble levels aid the horizontal or vertical positioning. The viewfinder allows all focal lengths and formats to be set and shift movements to be simulated.

Stereo photography

Stereo blocks are available for 58mm, (possible boost to 47mm), 65mm, 75mm, 90mm, 135mm and 150mm focal lengths. The stereo base is 75mm, while the aperture, shutter release and distance setting are mechanically coupled. The newly developed Synchro 3D ensures absolutely perfect synchronization of shutter release at all speeds up to 1/500 sec. The stereo block can be shifted 15mm upwards and downwards. For focal lengths of 75mm and more, one of the two lenses can be centered to allow mono-photographs to be taken with the 3D block.

Macro-Stereo Adapter for 1:1.5 to 1:1

The macro-stereo adapter format 2×56mm × 80 mm is equipped with a Rodenstock Macro Sironar 5.6/180mm. A double diaphragm has been installed directly before the lens's own diaphragm to enable a basic selection from 9 to 17mm. The base of the double diaphragm can be set externally using the lens's own diaphragm lever.
Two flashguns can be attached on the side next to the lens; their distance from the motive can be varied to achieve optimal lighting conditions. The flashguns are produced by Metz, model “mecablitz 54MZ-3”.
A viewfinder was specially constructed for this macro-stereo adapter; the variable monocular made by Eschenbach makes it possible to define the picture dimensions with great accuracy.
Exact determination of the distance is made possible by two laser pointers which are integrated in the viewfinder. The view-finder is equipped with parallax compensation for a large variety of enlargements.

Stereo slide-viewer

Stereo slide-viewer for framed 6 x 7 slides, exterior dimensions 85 x 85 mm. The oculars are equipped with high-quality achromatic lenses to cover an image field 73 x 73 mm. The slide-viewer is stylishly constructed out of wood; the lenses are set in metal and focal lengths are synchronized. 12 volt halogen bulbs are used for lighting via 220 / 12 Volt power unit.

Accessories and tips

Self–locking bellows, filter size l70×l30mm. The insert mask can be shifted 20 mm, magnet holder allows shift of the filter holder and moving it into any direction.

Rear lens clip-on filters – particularly useful for black and white photography and considerably less expensive than the wide–diameter front lens filters.

Macro extension tubes for very long focal lengths as well as for 1:1 macro photography.

Any large format camera lens can be adapted for use with Gilde but only if their rear lens diameter is not larger than 61mm.

Photo credit: © Leitz Photographica Auction