First Look… Yashica Pentamatic II – Finally!!!

After years of searching, we’ve finally acquired our first Pentamatic II. A rather rare camera that was only released in Japan and only for a short time. It’s estimated (by us) that less than 6,000 bodies were made. How many of those survived to the present day is of course unknown.




Much more detail about this Pentamatic coming soon.

Studio Camera: Fujifilm FinePix S9000W


Diving in Puerto Rico – 1989

I’ve hardly scanned any of my hundreds of pictures from our time living in Puerto Rico – 1988 to 1991. We lived in a big poured concrete house on top of the highest hill overlooking the Caribbean on the U.S. Naval Base at Roosevelt Roads (Ceiba). Hurricane Hugo (1989) blew out almost all of our windows – we weren’t there as we had evacuated a day before the storm hit. Our belongings were water damaged and our cars were scratched and sandblasted by the fierce winds but we were safe and our cats made it through the storm just fine (interior safe room with plenty of food and water).

We feel for the good people of Puerto Rico. It’s a tough little island and I’m sure they’ll pull through but the recovery will be slow and painful.

Here’s a photo I did find on my PC. It’s me getting ready for a dive at one of our favorite swimming spots on base.


Photo by Carol

roosey house

Our house is circled in blue with the line underneath. This area was known as Nimitz Drive and was senior enlisted base housing. It looks like the forest (jungle) has taken over.

rr big

Large scale view of eastern Puerto Rico. Our house was in the small red circle. We could easily see the island of Vieques from our upstairs windows. The large red circle is where Hurricane Maria made landfall.

Hoping that Puerto Rico can recover quickly.

Chris and Carol

Newest Pentamatic – another fine Yashica joins the family.

A recently acquired Yashica Pentamatic for our collection. This one came to us from a fellow collector here in the southeast US.

This one includes the Auto Yashinon 5.5c f/1.8 lens that puts the lens as a very late production model (maybe mid 1961). Here’s a chance to check out our Pentamatic from many angles.



The angled shutter release button is in a perfect position for maintaining a solid grip on this heavy body while releasing the shutter.


The lens serial number, No. 60521000 is unique in the fact that it’s a whole number (21000).


The cold shoe is mounted on the camera’s left side top plate. Actually a very good spot for it.


This unique lever controls the rewind knob which pops up from under the cold shoe (it moves from the “A” position).


The body serial number, NO. 126013189 decodes to: 12 = December, 60 = 1960, 13189 = 13,189th made since December of 1959.





The lever is now in the “O” position which allows the back to be unlocked.


Pulling up the rewind knob completes the opening.

Our love affair with this fine camera continues. We just can’t get over the clean lines and excellent design.

If you want to acquire a nice Pentamatic for your own collection, they come up occasionally on US online auction sites and infrequently on auction sites in Japan. Nice examples can be had for under $50. Super nice examples will go closer to $100 with some guarantee of functionality from the seller.

Seagull 4B-1

A great camera that I’ve never considered. Looks like she found a good one!

Camera Go Camera

When I return to the UK for the summer, I take my new cameras back with me. This is mainly due to the humidity here. Everything goes moldy or grows fungus especially if you leave the air condition off. There isn’t much you can do about it in Japan when there is 90% humidity for days on end. This website gives some advice if you can’t afford a special cabinet. I am thinking of investing, but for now, I am saving all the little silica packs.

Anyway, it also means I can buy new-to-me cameras to play with when I return. However, the choices are getting smaller as my blog list gets bigger. It also meant I took all my medium format cameras back, but still had some film left in my fridge. Instead of throwing or giving it away I searched for a reasonably priced 120mm camera. The Fujipet doesn’t…

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The Pippi Longstocking House – Amelia Island

Located in what is known as Old Town (Fernandina Beach) overlooking the Amelia River on the northwest side of Amelia Island. Originally built around 1870 for a harbor pilot Captain Bell and the second owner was also a river captain in 1901. Located on a high bluff at 212 Estrada Street, it overlooks the former Spanish fort San Carlos (c1811).

It’s a lovely house that’s been restored and maintained through the decades. It stood in as Pippi Longstocking’s house in the late 1980s movie “The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking”… “The house was altered and remodeled through the years. When movie producers came calling in 1987, it was its original weathered white with hunter green shutters. The house stood in for Villa Villekulla, the fictional home of Pippi, a character in a series of books written by Swedish author Astrid Lindgren. The young girl lives alone in a small Swedish village sharing the house with her monkey and horse. She befriends the two children living next door, Tommy and Annika Settergren, and they have many adventures together.”

Today it is a private residence and is not open for tours. It’s a very easy to photograph house because of the large open area in front of the house (actually Fernandina Plaza Historic State Park).


The “Pippi Longstocking House” on Amelia Island. Built c1870

If you find yourself near Amelia Island it is well worth the visit (don’t miss the 40 block Historic District of Fernandina Beach while you’re at it).


Pippi says “hi”!

Thanks for stopping by!