Yups, the dust may look ugly, but the fingerprint on a lens is a no-go. I doubt if invisible or very hardly visible haze would have the power to really reduce contrast much, and it would be worse or better depending on light direction. Here, it's not the case. Unlike the developer that lacked the time or the power to really rise and even out the curve, which could worsen the situation quite evenly...
What's funny, here: http://www.sovietcams.com/index.php?-1424201095 they write about Jupiters. Mine version, apparently, is not there, I have PT3080 body, but with markings in cyrilic, from 1968 (I've got it with a body with matching date). Should I report it to those folks? I seriously doubt if it's rare, it looks totally normal, though the screw they've used in the leather case is really obnoxious, so maybe I have a kind of "leftover camera"...
I guess if we're into dating lenses and talking about contrast, this Zorki is a keeper?
If you plan to shoot some more soon, makeshift DIY lenshood may be of interest:
Mine would be a 3110, except there is no "Made in USSR" marking, and "Jupiter" is in Cyrillic; focus distances are in green and the front ring & aperture scale are screened not engraved. I've found others from the same year, same marking schema, for sale so they're common - the one (3110) with Roman markings and the "Made in USSR" is likely an export version of what I have.
I have to confess, I've caught an unhealthy fascination with the FSU lenses and cameras. I'm trying to figure out a way to put a Helios 103 in a screwmount, also a Industar-61 LD in a collapsible barrel from an I- 10/22/50. Not having the lenses in hand yet, it's all speculation... probably end up buying a Kiev to get a Helios. :laugh:, I miss my Contax II.
Edit - for the OP, it's good to keep in mind that these cameras and lenses are anywhere from 25 to 50+ years old. They'll need servicing, and likely shutter curtains sooner or later. Getting another one when/if yours gives up is false economy, these cameras if properly serviced will go on taking pictures for quite a few years.
Any older camera will need service, I recently bought a Nikkormat FT from 1966, one of the cleanest looking I've seen, still has the stickers on it. It's working, and working well at room temp., but not in cold weather - after 47 years, it's earned some maintenance!
My second Zorki arrived today, a Zorki-3C from 1956 with an older, silver Jupiter-8. The camera is in very good shape aesthetically but it does have some slow speed shutter issues. With a shutter setting of 1 second the front curtain typically won't complete it's travel across the frame. The remaining slow speeds work but the front curtain was noticeably slow to begin but has improved a bit with use. It will still hang on occasion. Slow shutter times appear to be about 1 stop slower than indicated. On the B setting, in the beginning, the front curtain usually did not complete its travel and I would have to wind and shoot again. With use it is more likely to complete it's travel than not but it still hangs on occasion. 1/25th just appears slow. In the film compartment the toothed sprocket for the film does not rotate freely and has considerable drag when set to rewind, as if there was thick cold grease in it. I can return this item but I would rather try to repair it myself or have the seller reduce my cost and get it repaired. Thoughts?
Attachment 78284 Attachment 78285
Showing front curtain hung:
Gears with dirt/gunk:
Regarding your statement E.; I understand completely now. These little cameras are intriguing. Kind of like having an old car to tinker with.
Originally Posted by E. von Hoegh
Well, if you forget machining marks visible on the inside, this camera has some excellence to it. "Old" times, beveled viewfinder and rangefinder windows (it's harder to stick a finger in it that way, believe or not), vulcanite, rather than leatherette, and you can wear it on a strap. Even the winding knob will hurt your fingers less (Barnack-like first models of FED and Zorki have silky film advance BTW). Pity there's no self-timer.
Despite dragging curtain, I'd "waste" a piece of film, load the camera and shoot 3-4 frames to check for leaking light and evaluate the lens. In case of the lens needing a service as well, I'd return it.
What you're describing is a typical state of a camera after nearly 60 years of occupying a place on a shelf, only being used every now and then, and that's what I'm usually afraid of buying. So yes, thickened grease is what it looks like, it'll need some C, L and maybe A afterwards.
As I've said earlier - either it's an opportunity, or a waste of time to service it on your own, depending of who you are (patience level), and how much time you have on your hands or how much will to get your hands dirty and learn to service stuff, rather than making photos. Those are fairly simple cameras to repair (there are simpler models though), but some basic experience is needed regardless. I'm not good in terms of service myself, I do only the stuff I know. In a similar case, I've taken out the shelf of the lower half of the camera, cleaned the couple of big wheels at the bottom of the camera and added some fresh lubricant everywhere I could reach with a thin screwdriver with a drop of machine oil at the tip (did I write you only need a Swiss Army Knife to service it?). From "sticking" it progressed to "slowing down in the cold", so I've repeated lubrication, and finally it's working in sub-freezing. Not an ethical practice, but I hope to be able to pay for a complete CLA of all my cameras in a couple of years, and DIY lousy service is all I can do now.
So, I think what you have is 90% a problem in curtain drum and rollers. All needs fresh oil. You don't need to disassemble the top of the camera to make it all work, I think, just the lower part. For a preview of what CLA looks, google for "Zorki 4 CLA" or download Meizenberg's book, where he writes: Zorki 3C - same as Zorki 4, but without a self-timer... The sprocket wheel, if it's stiff, will also need some grease to go inside it, as well, as whole set of wheels going from the film advance knob, you see it when you look from the bottom of the camera towards the top.
If you have any thin lubricant (just not dare to use vegetable oil, please) and a small brush to clean the wheels, simple cleaning and lubrication it's worth trying, I think. It'll take one to two hours doing it the first time, and you'll have the opportunity to really clean the camera, as it looks mighty dusty.
What's a meaningful lesson, I think, is that the manual describing the service of every popular FSU camera prior to the date of publication is comparable in size to service manual of Pentax LX alone. Those are cheap, but reparable cameras, and that's why there's so much of it on the market, unlike fancy SLRs.
Contax II is the ultimate camera for me! I'd give my three analog SLR cameras (Ricoh XR-1s, borked and corroded XR-1, Carena CX-300) and four lenses (including two Pentax lenses and two of unmentionable brands), plus Moskva 5 (needs CLA, but the bellows, rangefinder and faster speeds are OK), Zorki 4 and beaten up to death and not quite sharp Industar 61 L/D, for a Contax II (or a Leica II or III, for that matter) in good condition, with a standard lens. I'm serious. If someone is up for a swap and is willing to pay for all the shipping/customs to/from Poland, please PM me. I'll add 1m long Kaiser's release cable and a bag of random spare parts if it's still 2013. I can make photos. Else I'll just continue living with what I have and maybe some day I'll buy one.
Originally Posted by E. von Hoegh
I've been working for some short time on a Kiev 4am with a Helios 103. What can I say... The camera had some clunk-clunk factor to it, and it suffered from uneven frame spacing issues, prolly due to same reason the Zorki puts sprockets into the image (or the other way around...). It's still a "pro" camera compared to amateur-oriented Zorkis, even if it's usually horribly machined and assembled after '60s or 70s.
The lens was good though. I like the Sonnar look of my Jupiter more, esp. how dreamy and soft it gets wide open, but that's a matter of aesthetics, and I guess I don't have the best sample in the world. The Helios looked like every other lens, which is a compliment for something 30 or 40 years older, than "every other lens"... Shooting Helios some years before, I'm kinda used to how Biotar heritage renders the image, that's the norm for me, like a bread and butter.
As for frankensteining some lenses, either it's an exercise in machining your own gear, or just being wasteful in terms of both time and gear, but it sounds like you know what you're doing. Having a lens, I'd rather use it as it is. But if you're skilled and you have a lathe, I guess there's nothing stopping you really. Collapsible Industar barrel is something like 19mm wide, there's no space for anything close to f/2 or even f/2.8 diameter, it''l be interesting to watch how you overcome that issue.
Your best bet is to find an early Kiev say pre '60 and fix any worn bits.
Originally Posted by q_x
The Contax IIs are similar and also have light leaks and uneven frame spacing... Only the name plate is significantly different, but they are pretty.
Leica II are well expensive, Contax II a lot cheaper.
Any of these cameras will need work, if only a cleaning, due to their age. You can get a Contax II w/o lens, in need of CLA and shutter tapes for ~ USD 100, there's one on feepay BIN for USD 75 right now. A Leica II or III will cost more, say ~USD 150-225, needing CLA and curtains. If you are able to do this kind of work, there's a lot of bargains out there.
Originally Posted by Xmas
Having seen first-hand what sometimes passes for a CLA, I'd not purchase a camera advertised as freshly CLA'd unless the seller could document the work was done by a skilled and reputable person - then I wouldn't buy it anyway, because I can do the work myself and I'm cheap.;)
Originally Posted by q_x
I have access to a toolroom, with a Hardinge lathe and a Moore jigborer, so I can machine whatever I need, to whatever tolerance is appropriate, with the exception (for now) of metric threads - there are some ways around that, though. It looks like the focussing mount (inner helicoid) from a late J-8 can be bored out to accept the optical cell of a H-103. I like the Helios because it's a typical clinical-looking double Gauss, just like my 50/2 Nikkor H's.
As for the collapsibel I-61, it may be possible to remachine the I-10/22/50 focussing mount and fabricate a new barrel to accept a (possibly remachined) optics cell from the I-61. I'll most likely end up with examples of these lenses anyway as users, once I do five minutes with a dial caliper will tell me what's possible... maybe a collapsible H-103! :laugh:
The there are all those M42 Soviet lenses...:blink:
For what it's worth - http://forum.mflenses.com/helios-103...on-t53684.html
Looks like the body and lens are the same year - a good sign, possibly the original lens for that body.:)
Originally Posted by Lamar
Xmas, Contax is said to have internal parts chromed, I doubt any Kiev will have it, and finding Kiev assembled from Contax gears in Poland is like hitting needle in a haystack three times in a row. Hence the original Contax. Migrating lens designs was way harder due to different glass available on Russian market, so they had to change every single design as soon as they've run out of Zeiss glass. I can hit either a good body with an inferior lens (Early Kiev) or the other way around (late Kiev). So for now I'm sticking to Zorkis as long as I'm able to service it myself.
Disassembling the shutter and replacing anything in Leica shutter in it is way beyond my comfort zone, E. I'd cruise European flee markets to find a serviceable piece. I haven't yet taken a Kiev apart.
Leica or Contax, doesn't matter. It may be a different story in some years though, servicing Zorki 4 is a learning experience in my case. At least I got mine up ad running. I'm not missing much to really dis- and reassemble whole camera, but I'm afraid to do this and I won't without a good reason and a quality lubricant. And a spanner wrench, costing more where I live, than four Zorkis 4 with their lenses on.
I've seen somewhere I61 in Contax mount. Looking forward for more bizarre lenses made this way.
And yes, that's the softness of Jupiter I've been praising that much. It's not lack of sharpness common in Tessar clones, it's more like the bokeh only ends where you want it to end. For sharp results, I have Pentax M 50/1.7, pretty badass lens for the price, it almost never leaves the body.
Here the Helios is far from "clinical":