Quote Originally Posted by Nicholas Lindan View Post
Nevertheless, Exaktas were the only SLR for a long while and were well established in the early 50's.
Not really true Charles Noble (an American of German origin) took over KW - Kamera Werkstätten Guthe & Thorschin in 1938 swapping it for his US business with KW's Jewish owners. The company already made 127 & 120 SLR's and the first thing Noble did was have an SLR designed which they released in 1939.

So the Prakiflex was only 3 years after the Kine Exacta, after WWII it evolved, to became the Praktina in 1952 and as a camera system was superior to the Exactas, the first full 35mm SLR camera system with a motor drive. They are rather collectible cameras people building up complete systems.

The Communists stole the company & put Noble & his son in Buchenwald after WWII, the son being sent on later to a Soviet labour camp, John was only released in 1955 after the US Presidents intervention with Stalin. KW later merged with East German Contax becoming Praktika, then taking over Exacta a few years later.

After the collapse of the Berlin wall John Noble was given back one his fathers factories, and began making Noblex panoramic cameras, the company went bankrupt and was bought by the employees.

I like my Eaxcta Varex IIb though, possibly the best of the Exacta's and need to get my Exa 1a fixed.

Ian