Had to get a Kiev

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by desertrat, Sep 25, 2005.

  1. desertrat

    desertrat Subscriber

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    OK, Now I've done it. Finally gave in to temptation and got seduced by the Russian Hasselblad based cameras. I resisted for quite awhile, telling myself I didn't need one, what with a couple of medium format folders and a perfectly good Pentacon 6 with two lenses already at hand. But I knew it was coming. Visiting the Kievaholic Klub didn't help any, either. Even with all the fair warnings from "Top 10 things to do with a broken Kiev", "Kiev Truths" (It will break), and the "Lighter side of owning a Kiev", I was not deterred. I wanted one even more. Maybe the warnings were carefully crafted reverse psychology. I started watching Kubanoid's auctions carefully, because he is well regarded at the Russian Camera Forum. I've bought Russian rangefinders from FSU sellers in the past, but not from him. I won a Kiev-80 from him, and it arrived last Tuesday. It's very similar to the Salyut-S that came before it and the Kiev-88 that came after. Kubanoid was true to his word, the thing works, even at the dirt cheap price I paid for it. There is some lore surrounding the metal shuttered versions of this camera that the shutters won't work properly at 500 or 1000 and this can't be repaired or adjusted. I'm happy to report that on this example, these speeds work well and the frame is evenly exposed. The 1000 speed is, if anything, fast instead of slow. I found myself picking it up and fondling it, winding and firing it just to hear the sound. I started packing it around the house and setting it down where I was sitting or working. It is beautiful in some ways, rude and crude in others, but that makes it even more desirable somehow. Maybe I'm just trying to emulate the examples of Kievaholism.. :tongue: Like every other Russian or Ukrainian camera I've bought from sellers in the former Soviet Union, the focus needs some minor adjustment, but I think this can be done without sending it out. I made a makeshift focusing screen by attaching a small piece of Scotch magic tape to a scrap piece of film and installing it in the magazine. This was used to observe the focus at the film plane through the peephole in the film magazine. After determining a "fudge factor" to correct the focus from the finder screen, I got some beautifully sharp images on film of the objects I was focussing on. IIRC, some older 35mm SLRs have little tabs that the mirror rests on when down for viewing, and the mirror can be adjusted by bending the tabs slightly. There are tabs like this in the Kiev-80 body, but they're too heavy duty to bend easily, and I don't want to break anything, so I'm leaving them alone 'till I get a repair manual. Also, if I raise the mirror slightly, which I will need to do to correct the focus, the plunger that operates the lens diaphragm retracts slightly, so I'm not sure this is the correct way to adjust the mirror. Anyone have experience with this?
     
  2. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

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    Congrats! I think cameras are kinda like that old song... "any love is good love, so I took what I could get..."

    Good, bad, beautiful, or ugly... we love them.... we buy them! :wink:
     
  3. sunnyroller

    sunnyroller Member

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    Congrats

    I bought a Kiev 88cm back in March. I LOVE IT and not just for the optional way cool leopard skin cover it has either! Good luck with it.

    Sunny
     
  4. gnashings

    gnashings Inactive

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    I want one of those red snake skin ones... because of (insert list of blow hard, gargon laden, I-know-what-I-am-talking-about reasons here :smile:).

    But... I still can't carry that enthusiasm to the bank - so for now, the money is getting saved up for an RB67... but who knows how steadfast I remain... after a few emotion-laden posts like this one...
     
  5. Kevin Roach

    Kevin Roach Member

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  6. sunnyroller

    sunnyroller Member

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    Thanks for the article on the lizard skin

    Kevin--
    Thanks for the article on how to DIY a cover. It is great to have for a future reference. I see red leather in the future--if my Kiev is a hassy copy I need to stay up with hassy fashions! Note: No actual leopards were harmed in the making of my camera cover! :smile:
     
  7. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

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    Kevin!
    How cool!!!! Thanks for posting this for us! :smile: I am looking at my cameras now saying 'hmmmmm I wonder....' :wink:
     
  8. sajianphotos

    sajianphotos Member

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    Welcome to Kiev-Ville. It's a wonderland of both bliss and grief where hope reins (reigns?) supreme. In fact the residents here in the land of Kiev are the most hopeful people on earth. We are filled to overflowing hope that the frames don’t overlap too much; that the light meter isn’t off by more than 2 stops; that the mirror bounce doesn’t get in the way at the speed we’re set at; that when it says “shipped from the Ukraine” it really does get here – o yeah you already read the Kievaholic web site – no need to go on.
    Really, though, mine have always been dependable, if not a little quirky, and they are genuinely fun to shoot…er…take pictures with. Mine have put up with a lot of banging around.
    A guy once told me “a friend is someone who knows all your faults and accepts you anyway”. I know the faults of my Kiev and it really is like a friend.
    Good grief, where is it I put that therapists number?
    Anyway, if you can’t have fun with a Kiev, better get out of photography.
    Here’s wishing you many fun days ahead.

    BTW, I’m no pro but here are a couple of shots from my Kiev 60.
    http://www.apug.org/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=9273&cat=500&ppuser=7384
    http://www.apug.org/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=9262&cat=500&ppuser=7384
     
  9. desertrat

    desertrat Subscriber

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    Sample Pics

    Thanks all for the encouragement. Jeanette, thanks for the kind words about the older cameras we love. I visited your gallery, and noticed you use the "real thing" for some of your b/w work. Fine images! Sunny, the leopard skin must really turn heads. Gnashings, I must admit, for serious photography, the RB67 is a more sensible choice. I'm a recreational photographer who wants someday to make some exhibition quality prints. I'm fully in the grip of Kievaholism, with the delusion that I can get the beast "dialed in" to make those images. An (almost) perfectly good Seneca 8X10 languishes while I tinker and fiddle with the Kiev-80. Kevin, I bookmarked you article, to eventually put a new "skin" on one of my older cameras. Jim, thanks for the encouragement and images from your Kiev-60. Here are two sample pics from my second roll through the Kiev-80. The prints are a little dark. Drydown got me again...
    http://www.apug.org/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=9360&cat=500&ppuser=7639
    http://www.apug.org/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=9355&cat=500&ppuser=7639
     
  10. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

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    Ooooo! I really like those cacti! :D I love my Hassy! I'll bet you feel the same way about it's 'cousin'. :wink:

    I just recently added rbrian's Foldex Folder to my small collection! He sent me a roll of color film which I went out & shot... I think I'm in love. :surprised: hahaha
     
  11. sajianphotos

    sajianphotos Member

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    REALLY good start with the Kiev! Are you gonna have fun or what?
     
  12. phatcactus

    phatcactus Member

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    Awesome. This thread is just what I was looking for, having been researching Kievs for the past few months. I've got a guitar or two I need to sell, then I think it's a Kiev 88 CM MLU for me. :D
     
  13. MattCarey

    MattCarey Member

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    I once owned a Salyut-C from Sam Sherman. It had the metal shutter. It also had a small pinhole in the shutter (which Sam warned me about before I bought it). I too loved to play with it, cocking it and firing the shutter to hear the clockwork sounds of the mechanism...until the shutter ripped.

    Ah well, one quick trip to NY for repair (and a few calls starting with "Hello, this is Eddie from Camera shop") and it was great. I wasn't really using it, so I passed it off to my brother.

    Matt
     
  14. herb

    herb Member

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    You will have some experiences with Kiev. I had one for a while, and did not like the mirror bounce, so I got a hartblei, which is a Kiev with a detail job, has mirror lockup and some other niceties. It is easier to use, and will take Hasselblad backs. They have a web site.