More Yashica – Yashica Flex S – 1954

Also known as the Yashica Flex S. I’ve put together a nice complete set of this hard-to-find early TLR from Yashima-Yashica. As you can see on the box, at this point in time the company that would change its name in 1958 to Yashica was still Yashima Kogaku Seiki Company. The instruction book is in English as the camera was marketed by the Miura Trading Company and not directly marketed by Yashima. The Model S was the first TLR with a “built-in exposure meter”. The meter was simply a light meter made for Yashima by Sekonic and attached to the camera’s left side. The selenium cells for the meter are located under the nameplate which is a flap that swings upwards.

If you would like to know more about this landmark camera then I invite you to visit my good friend Paul Sokk’s Yashica TLR site at http://www.yashicatlr.com/66ModelsPage2.html

Paul’s work on the Yashica TLR family of cameras is second to none. He’s also included a wonderful addition to his pages with additional pages dedicated to Leica, Nicca, Leotax, Minolta, and others. Give his site a read and tell him Chris sent you!

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and, while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2022 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Yashica’s J-Series of 35mm SLR Cameras from the 1960s

Regular readers know that the main focus of my collection has been centered around cameras made by Yashica. I have collected quite a few examples going back to their 1953 origins. This particular series caught my fancy a few years back when I was lucky enough to find a pristine Yashica J-3 in a pro-black finish with a matching lens. When it comes to chasing classic cameras, the J-3 in black and in pristine condition is no easy task. Here are a few images of what I’ve put together so far.

Chasing these guys has been fun, to say the least. It’s not that any one of these is rare in the true sense of the word but finding pristine examples has been the tough part.
As best as I can tell, the J-7 wasn’t the last one produced in the series as the J-4 came out just a bit later.
The black J-3 was never mentioned in any brochure which was odd considering it was Yashica’s first all-black SLR and was produced in limited numbers.
Since the cameras from Yashica were never meant to be of interest to collectors very few survive to this day in mint and better condition. The little circle on the camera’s left side front is the CdS exposure meter. These cameras did not feature TTL (thru-the-lens metering).

If you decide to collect this series you’ll find a very nice assortment of lenses to choose from as Yashica produced thousands over the years. The body accepts m42 screw-in lenses which for a time was one of the most widespread lenses made.

Here is what a complete in-the-box set looks like for the silver J-3 from around 1962.

As always thanks for stopping by – I hope I’ve shed sufficient light on this often overlooked series from Yashica. Maybe a few of you would enjoy the chase in pursuit of these mid-1960s gems. – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and, while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2022 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Ihagee Exakta Varex – rare European model, 1950

As the title states, this is a rather rare (very hard to find at least) European model of this popular camera. In the United States, this model was simply marked “V.” on the body and it was sometimes referred to as the Varex V.

35mm single-lens reflex film camera with interchangeable lenses.

The camera’s place in history is it was the first or at the very least, one of the first 35mm single-lens reflex cameras made beginning in the late 1930s in pre-war Germany and picking up again after the war in what would become East Germany (Dresden).

Here it is viewed from behind with the waist-level pop-up viewfinder opened. The small rectangular opening is an eye-level “sports finder”.
Pictured here with the prism removed. Ihagee also made an eye-level pentaprism that could be swapped out.
With the lens removed the Exakta bayonet mount is visible. The lever locked the lens flange securely to the body.
With the back film door removed. This particular camera uses yarn as a light seal. The serial is located inside just above the shutter curtain.

A few words about the serial number. As best as I’ve been able to tell, the serial numbers range from around 667000 to 692000 for this Varex. I’ve seen other estimates of somewhere between 670000 to 684000. If a reader has more definitive information I’d love to see it.

Heat stamped on the bottom plate is “Made in Germany”.
My nearly complete set with some hard-to-find accessories.

The lens. It’s a well-respected lens by Meyer Gorlitz – Primoplan Red V f/1.9 58mm. It has an impressive 14 aperture blades and is claimed to be constructed with 5 elements in 4 groups. Collectors today still chase after nice examples of the lens, especially in the M42 mount. As seen pictured above, I have an aluminum lens hood (shade) made by Cenei in its original leather case, an Ihagee Dresden 42mm slip-on blue filter in its original box, a Heliopan yellow slip-on filter in its original plastic case, and finally a 42mm push-on plastic lens cap (unmarked but made in Germany).

I’ve come to the decision that my collections of cameras have grown a bit beyond my original intent so this gorgeous set is available for purchase in my online camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com where additional images can be found and a more complete description of its features. It can be purchased directly through Etsy and it ships nearly worldwide!

Thanks for sticking around to the end of this post and as always, have a fantastic day and evening! – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Preview image – Exakta Varex

Collector condition Varex.

Hi and thanks for stopping by! Here’s a preview of a rather rare camera that will be available in my online camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (hosted by Etsy). Hopefully, it will be fully listed by mid-day on Tuesday. I’ll post additional pictures here too. – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

The magical Leica M4

In my opinion, the M4 is an interesting model to chase after but be prepared to pony up for super-sharp black versions with smaller production runs like this stunning M4 from 1969.

In this example, it’s mated with a sharp f2 35mm Summicron lens (I much prefer a wide-angle lens for the type of street photography I enjoy).

An exceedingly handsome camera from the 1960s.

I sold this camera and lens set for around $6,800. My advice is to chase after the best M4 your budget will allow and expect to have it serviced by Leica. It’s a joy to use and to just hold in your hands. I wish I had kept the one I had access to but it was a consignment piece and it was sent to auction on eBay. Offers came in from China and Japan and from many parts of Europe but in the end, they went to a collector in the US (I believe).

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Saturday singles

1951 GMC

Camera – Yashica L AF 35mm compact point and shoot (1986). Fujicolor Superia X-TRA 400 color negative film.

1986 – Yashica L AF Date.

The Yashica L AF is a sleeper of a camera to chase for your collection and certainly a camera that will exceed your expectations on a photo walkabout. The super sharp 32mm Yashinon lens is fast enough for most autoexposure situations and clear enough for making enlargements.

Yashica L AF on the left and Kyocera T Scope (T3) on the right.

If you’re looking to spend your money wisely chase after the less expensive L AF over the T3. They were made in the same factory about two years apart (T3 is from 1988). For hundreds of dollars less, you can have a fun camera that you’ll actually use.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day! – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Best Yashica ever!

This is one of the best sets I have ever run across in all of my years of collecting (well OK, it’s in my top ten at least).

Amazing complete set from Yashica. A virtual time machine from 1965.

The Yashica D twin-lens reflex (TLR) is one of the more popular models from Yashica’s line of medium format 120 roll film cameras. The camera is fully functional and looks (and works) as if it arrived from the factory yesterday! The Yashikor lenses are crystal clear.
This set comes complete with its original inner and outer boxes, inside packing materials, all papers, and its original beautiful brown leather case.
By the way, it’s a matching number set – the camera serial number matches the box and papers!

I had a buyer for this set in mind and it sold within 24 hours of my listing it in my online camera shop. It originally came from a collector in England.

Here are a few more boxed sets I was lucky enough to find in my travels.

I’m like a kid on Christmas morning whenever I find these still “new in the box” camera sets. Thanks for stopping by and have a great day! – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Kanpa! by Konica

Awesome little camera from Konica.

Konica’s “party camera” – Kanpai

Thanks for stopping by and if you’d like, Google Konica Kanpai and see what you find. – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Yashica Camera vs. Rodan!

Back in 1956, the classic Japanese sci-fi monster movie Rodan was released in color to wide acclaim. In the Japanese original Rodan was Radon (Original title: Sora no daikaijû Radon).

Something that I’ve always liked doing is whenever a camera is used in an older movie I like to see if I can tell which model or at least the brand of the camera that’s depicted. Obviously cameras sometimes just flash across the screen as they are usually just props used to enhance the story so it can be very difficult to identify the camera beyond the basics (TLR, SLR, rangefinder). In this movie at about the 41:15 mark, the young newlywed is about to take his bride’s picture while touring an active volcano. He’s clearly using a Yashima YashicaFlex Model C twin-lens reflex (TLR) camera when he sees Rodan fly towards them. In horror, he runs away while throwing the camera to the ground.

Screen capture of the YashicaFlex after hitting the ground.

The YashicaFlex Model C was produced between September 1955 and June 1957 making it a good choice for this then high-budget flick (it was the first monster movie from this famous studio to be filmed in color). I wonder if Yashima (Yashica) paid for product placement?

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0049782/?ref_=ttmi_tt

Another camera I’ve spotted in a movie is the Calypso (later Nikonos) camera Bond gives Domino in the classic Thunderball (1965). The camera apparently takes underwater shots and has a built-in Geiger counter! From my IMDb contribution to “goofs” – “When Q hands Bond the underwater camera and tells him it takes 8 shots by pressing a button, the camera is plainly seen as a black Calypso 35mm camera with has black gaffers tape covering the name across the bottom. Later while onboard the yacht, Domino is seen with the camera as she walks in the passageway while using it as a Geiger counter. The camera falls to the deck when Largo confronts her and the lens is seen popping off. We hear the sounds of the counter and see some type of gadget inside just behind where the lens was. When she bends down and picks it up, Largo takes it from her and the camera is briefly seen with the silver lens re-attached”. Another camera in a movie is the Exakta VX 35mm SLR Jimmy Stewart uses in the Hickcock thriller Rear Window (1954).

Thanks for stopping by! Do you have a favorite movie where a camera plays a part? Let me know in the comments. Thanks.

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee

Yashica Electro 35 GT

I’ve decided to sell my very nice Yashica Electro 35 GT camera. I recently purchased it from the original first owner in my local camera shop. It’s working perfectly after I installed a fresh battery and battery adapter. The meter is accurate and the lens is crystal clear. This model of the Electro 35 features semi-auto exposure shooting. What I mean by that is you obviously set the film’s ASA (ISO) rating then select the correct exposure based on the brightness of the subject and the camera will set the proper shutter speed. There are warning arrows that are visible inside the viewfinder that will warn if the scene is too bright or dark for the f-stop you’ve selected. I’m making it sound more complicated than it actually is. Let’s say it’s a bright sunny day and you’re shooting with a film rated at 200 ASA. You’d set the exposure (f-stop) to let’s say f/8. You could walk around taking shots and except for manually focusing never change the exposure settings. The camera will automatically adjust the shutter speed. It’s perfect for black & white street photography.

The Electro 35 GT features a fast f/1.7 lens which makes this camera ideal for low light situations with fast film. The Yashinon DX lens is super sharp too and at 45mm it’s perfect for 35mm photography.
Here is the new battery with the adapter. About $13 from a seller in Spain. It allows you to use a very common alkaline battery since mercury batteries are banned.
It has a simple top plate with ASA settings from 25 to 1000. The two lights warn of exposures outside the proper exposure range. The meter turns on when you advance the film and shuts off after your shot.
Super nice 35mm rangefinder camera from Yashica.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day! – Chris

Comments are always welcomed as I’ve learned quite a bit from reader feedback. As always, thanks for stopping by and while you’re at it, feel free to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com (CC Design Studios hosted by Etsy). – Chris Whelan

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, is this blog’s property and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris, Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2021 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Buy Me A Coffee