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  1. #21

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    The uncoated Sonnar is an interesting lens to experiment with - not for everyone, and not for all subjects, but it can make very nice effects and is good for personal photography (family shots, friends, holiday, travel shooting, etc. - as opposed to say technically excellent work demanding best sharpness and contrast). The lack of coatings makes it prone to flare of course, and because of this it seems to do good in softer light - watch out for bright Sun, particularly backlit situations. It's a really impressive lens considering how old it is - it was very advanced for the time. It is really nicely made too mechanically - German technology at its best (for the 1930's).

  2. #22
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    Indeed, the uncoated Sonnar is great for B&W. With a proper hood and You wont need coatings, flare or haloing is going to be nonexistent except when shooting straight towards the Sun - but who really shoot like that and how many lenses, even coated ones can hold it up with such light?!...
    Zeiss Ikon Contax II is probably the best in the 35mm department, a lot improvements since Contax I, also its build way more solid, technologically, than even Leica.
    It might not be as elegant on the outside but its a beast under the hood.

  3. #23

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    Yes George, that's a good summary - it does not look as good as it works and handles, which is wonderfully. Zeiss really got it right with this system, and it got even better on the post-war models which are right up there with the Leica M's in quality and performance in my view (I own a Leica M too!).

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by brucemuir View Post
    I believe it. From what I gather they are all good unless they've been abused

    I could be wrong but your lens in those photos is marked Opton T which makes it post war from Oberkochen.
    I think they changed serial # series when they moven to west germany...perhaps that's why you are dating that example to 1936?
    Pretty much thats the official story the restart the numering but honestly, those times are a grey shaded area.
    I happen to have Zeiss-Opton Nr. 26***, non coated, on camera made 1938.
    Also, some of the post war Opton have issues with the canadian balsam.
    Years ago, I was cleaning a Super Ikonta Opton (Tesar) lens for a friend, one cemented group had a tinny bits of fungus on the side.
    Around that post WWII time, Leica had similar issues with, again, canadian balsam, M2, M3 prisms, Summicrons an we can go on up until late 50's.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by georg16nik View Post
    Pretty much thats the official story the restart the numering but honestly, those times are a grey shaded area.
    I happen to have Zeiss-Opton Nr. 26***, non coated, on camera made 1938.
    Also, some of the post war Opton have issues with the canadian balsam.
    Years ago, I was cleaning a Super Ikonta Opton (Tesar) lens for a friend, one cemented group had a tinny bits of fungus on the side.
    Around that post WWII time, Leica had similar issues with, again, canadian balsam, M2, M3 prisms, Summicrons an we can go on up until late 50's.
    I have a CZJ T* dec/1945 and there is some funky things going on in the rear inner elements. I can only surmise is either separation or some internal coating issues.
    This anomaly hasn't effected IQ from what I can tell so far. It is also quite dusty.

  6. #26
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    Some of the problems start from that dust..
    You might need some alkaline solution to wipe that dust, since its, most of the times degraded grease/oil, mold and so on.
    Usually Ammonia or hydrogen peroxide 3% or activated water pH ~ 10, then ethyl alcohol > 90% does the job.

  7. #27
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    Thanks George,
    Yes, the CZJ is quite dusty but the later Opton 1.5 is in decent shape al arround.

    The CZJ also has aperture oil and from f/1.5 tof/2 is a bit stiff but is okay at smaller apertures.
    The Opton has mild oil and aperture is smooth but they BOTh need looking after.

  8. #28
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    What's the best way to deal with the haze on these lenses? The usual lens cleaning fluid helped a tiny bit, but there is still a bunch more.
    --------------------
    "Everytime I find a film or paper that I like, they discontinue it." -Paul Strand

    www.glasskeyphoto.com

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by tjaded View Post
    What's the best way to deal with the haze on these lenses? The usual lens cleaning fluid helped a tiny bit, but there is still a bunch more.
    Usually Ammonia should deal with haze nicely, I kind of don't like the smell and just use electro-activated water ~10pH, since I always have that at hand.
    With same success I have used a quarter teaspoon baking soda dissolved in a cup with distilled water, after that I finish with ethyl alcohol > 90% or mixed with distilled water.
    You basically need something alkaline to clean the oily traces, it apear as haze but it degraded oil/grease as I wrote above.
    Even some baby soaps mixed with distilled water should do the job.

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