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  1. #1

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    Anyone know anything about the Alpa Reflex 6b?

    I just bought at a local thrift store a Alpa Reflex model 6b with a Macro-Switar 50mm f1.8. I thought when I bought it it was just another fun and pretty old European camera, but I've been informed it's a bit rare and desirable. The particular camera I bought definitely needs a thorough CLA, and the lens has some fungus and cleaning marks to the coatings on the front and rear surfaces.
    Does anyone know anything about this camera, in particular how to clean and lubricate the shutter and what it's worth?

  2. #2
    nsurit's Avatar
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    McKeown's 2005 - 2006 has it at $600-$900. Made from 1959-1963. Unless you plan on using it, you might want to clean the dirt off and resell it "as is." It is doubtful that you would recover your cost of CLA if you were to do that before reselling. The scratches on the lens and the probable fungus damage will remain even if deminished by the CLA. Having "been there and done that" I'd say, get the dirt off and resell. Bill Barber

  3. #3
    bsdunek's Avatar
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    The Alpa was an extremely rugged and excellent Swiss made camera. In it's day it was considered as good as a Leica or Contax. In the mid-50's, my cousin used them professionally with great success. The only thing I never liked was the strange off-sided cocking lever. Unfortunately, if the lens is scratched and has fungus damage, it will never be any good. nsurit probably has the right idea, unless you just want to put it in a cabinet as a collector item.
    Bruce

    Moma don't take my Kodachrome away!
    Oops, Kodak just did!


    BruceCSdunekPhotography.zenfolio.com

  4. #4
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    Can I ask how much you paid for it??

    It is written somewhere in the popular literature that the Macro-Switar 50mm f1.8 is the finest prime lens ever.

    You got a steal my friend; the fact that it was in a thrift store boggles the mind!

  5. #5

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    I only paid $30. I really want to keep it and use it, but I'm in desperate need of some money right now, so I'm probably going to sell it. I figure if I sell it I can buy a nice Autocord or something and have enough money left to fix my car.
    It's a truly beautiful camera. It came in the original fabric lined box and everything. I quite like the ergonomics of the design, especially the 45 degree finder.
    What's the best way to sell this thing? Ebay?

  6. #6
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    Yes, probably eBay, or APUG, RFF. I mean, seriously though, fabric lined box... ridiculous! I've never seen one in person, but they have a reputation and they're just down right rare.

    I wonder how one ended up in a thriftstore; that's a story I'd like to know.

    Cheers!

    p.s., post pix if you can do so easily

  7. #7
    Rol_Lei Nut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsdunek View Post
    The Alpa was an extremely rugged and excellent Swiss made camera. In it's day it was considered as good as a Leica or Contax. I
    While somehow nice & interesting cameras (with, in some cases, excellent lenses being available for them), they have a reputation for not being very practical.

    A famous quip goes:
    Alpa rep: "Our cameras are made like watches!"
    Photographer: "But why don't you make them like cameras?!?"
    M6, SL, SL2, R5, P6x7, SL3003, SL35-E, F, F2, FM, FE-2, Varex IIa

  8. #8

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    The Alpa line was until the last model totally quirkie as far as SLRs go. It, like the Exacta, went its own way in controls and use. All that said, it totally rose above the other makers is feel, engineering, construction and snobbery. it is the only camera I ever came across that makes a Leica and Rolleifleex feel like a mass produced piece. The Alpa lenses at the time were considered the best of the best but as the cost was so much for the camera and lens the company was off the radar even for reviewers. This was more than a camera for the Rolls Royce crowd as it also was THE serious camera for professions who had huge bankrolls.

    A dealer in my town loaned me a 9 with the Alpa 50 m lens (can not remember which one) for a weekend to try. It took an entire day to understand it and feel comfortable to use and the next I had an experience I do not think I've ever come close to duplicating. No way could I afford it but I learned the difference between my Spotmatic and what I lusted for thereafter.

    My advice is different from the others. You have a once in a lifetime camera. Keep it and when you can afford to do it, have the camera and lens serviced. The fungus problem may not be as bad as suggested; a competent lens repair person should look at it and advise. If you simply dump it, even at a profit you may find yourself regretting it for many years wondering if i was the right thing to do.

  9. #9

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    "Back in the day" I was told that the Baptist Mission Board here standardized on Leica M for normal and wides and Alpa for teles.



 

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