Yashima (Yashica) Brochures – 1956

Yashica Bro 1956

Cover image from a Yashica brochure dated December 1956. The brochure introduces the Yashicaflex model C (pictured), Yashica Rookie (also know as the Yashicaflex R), and the Yashicaflex model A-2. I’m sure this lovely model was photographed in the mountains just north of the Yashima factory in Nagano Prefecture. I believe it was shot on Fuji color film. The brochure contains about 23 pages and covers all aspects of medium format (6×6) photography. It also highlights the modern production facilities at their factory in Suwa. One of the best vintage photographic brochures I have ever seen!

Yashima Bro 1956

This is a different brochure from 1956 – it’s actually been dated by a previous owner in the upper left corner.

Both of these brochures are quite rare outside of Japan and I would hazard a guess that they are becoming quite rare even in Japan.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

New In the Shop – 11.8.2019

Hello all! Lots of new items have been added to my camera shop this week which can be visited at http://www.ccstudio2380.com – everything is on sale and some come with FREE USA SHIPPING!

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Thanks for stopping by and feel free to check out my entire inventory at http://www.ccstudio2380.com – Thanks, Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

random scans from Japan

Every now and again I’ll find the time to scan a bunch of camera brochures for easy future reference. Here’s my latest batch fresh from Japan.

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Buy, sell, build or renovate your home!

Tokyu Lines, Minatomiral Line Route Map (current).

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Canon AE-1 Instruction Book (below) from March 1981. Definitely a different cover from the English Edition.

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Asahi Pentax Slide 501 (below) automatic 35mm slide projector/viewer. No date on the brochure but I’m guessing that it was released in the mid to late 1970s (around the time of the Pentax ME).

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From inside the brochure a rather surprising graphic. Can you imagine if something like this was inside your Kodak slide projector instructions in the US??? But Japan takes a more mature approach to nudity and the graphic is quite funny to see the reactions on the catoons faces.

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The Minolta TC-1 (below) from a brochure dated 1999. The TC-1 is a compact point and shoot 35mm film camera that still commands a strong price in the used market. Mint and near mint examples regularly sell from $800 to $1,200 USD on sites like eBay and Yahoo Japan Auction.

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The brochure that I scanned this from shows a list price of  ¥148,000 and an actual selling price of ¥122,000 (about $1,140 USD).

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28mm G-Rokkor f/3.5 lens – kinda slow for the money IMO.

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Fujifilm X-T1 / X-T10 brochure dated May 2015.

Nikon F80 (N80 in the US) brochure dated August 29, 2001.

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Fujifilm X-Pro2

Thanks for stopping by and some of these brochures can be found in my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com – Chris

New In the Shop – 10.10.2019

Lots of goodies were added to my camera shop this week as I continue to list items from my personal collection and some recent acquisitions from other collectors.

My shop is always open and can be found at http://www.ccstudio2380.com

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The Sony tripod is in mint condition and it’s rather cool – it features a built-in remote control right in the handle! The Nikon F book is from 1971 and it’s also in mint condition – these are getting much harder to find this nice after all these years.

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The Fujifilm Fuji DL-7 is awesome as it’s still brand new in the box – never used! The Fuji Zoom Cardia is as close to an SLR slayer that you can get in a 35mm compact point and shoot camera. How about the Minolta Six medium format camera from around 1936! It’s the very first one to carry the Minolta name.

Lots more to see in the shop so pop on over to http://www.ccstudio2380.com

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

 

Yashica TL-Electro

The TL-Electro was one of Yashica’s longest-running models in the very successful TL Series of 35mm single-lens reflex (SLR) cameras. Don’t confuse this model with the better known TL Electro X or TL Electro X ITS. It’s a totally different camera but equally important to Yashica’s success during the 1970s.

By analyzing serial numbers my good friend Paul Sokk ( YashicaTlr.com ) and I have determined that the TL-Electro was in production from April 1972 to February 1978. There’s still a chance of finding a few cameras outside of these dates but at this time they look pretty accurate.

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Original undated sales brochure for the TL-Electro.

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Essentially the TL-Electro is an updated version of the Yashica TL which was first produced in November 1967. The TL used a meter needle centering system vice the lighted arrows in the TL-Electro (same side and location in the viewfinder display).

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Cover of the instruction booklet dated 1974.

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From the instruction booklet. These exact batteries are no longer made (due to mercury) but there are replacements available that may do the job. The alkaline replacement is APX-640 or PX-640A (at 1.5v). The batteries only power the exposure meter system and not the shutter.

Yashica TL-Electro Box Logo

Original box that was with a camera that was produced in July 1973.

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Below is the Yashica TL from late 1967. The TL was the second camera in the TL Series right after the TL-Super (1966).

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The very basic but highly functional Yashica TL from an undated sales brochure.

The Yashica TL and TL-Electro are almost exact matches with the exception of a few placements of the dials and levers. Of course, the TL uses a mechanical meter display system where the TL-Electro gains the IC Brain and lighted arrows for metering. I haven’t had the opportunity to weigh each body to compare them yet but I would guess that they are pretty close.

When shopping for the TL-Electro or TL obviously choose the best looking and most functional cameras that your budget will allow. The TL, Electro AX and the FFT are the hardest to find in good condition even though plenty were made over the years. All of Yashicas cameras during this period used M42 screw-in lenses so it’s easy to mix and match.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Yashica 35 – Yashima’s first 35mm camera!

Yashima Optical Industries Company, Limited (Yashima) released their first 35mm rangefinder camera in April 1958. The camera was in development for at least a year (no proof of that but it seems reasonable to assume that an established TLR camera maker didn’t just pull this camera out of thin air). It could have been developed totally in-house as there is only speculation that Yashima received outside assistance in its development.

Here’s my earliest example of this historic camera. Note that the lens is marked “Yasinon” vice “Yashinon”. Yashima released at least two months of cameras (April and May 1958) with those markings before changing to what we now know as Yashinon.

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My recently acquired Yashica 35 with 60 or more years of dirt! Straight from an online seller in Japan. Note the unfamiliar “Yasinon” lens. These super early examples are rather hard to find since there were only two months of production.

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The good news is that it appears the camera lived most of its life in its leather case so there’s no damage to the surfaces of the body and lens. The bad news about living in a leather case is that it tends to support the growth of mold and fungus on the glass elements of the lens and in the rangefinder.

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The dirt is mostly made up of dust and fibers from the felt lining of the leather case and not soot and finger grime – which is a good thing. Sometimes this type of dirt actually keeps the surfaces protected from metal corrosion as long as it’s been stored in a dry environment.

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What it looked like on the Japanese auction site.

After some initial cleaning of the exterior (see below) with a bunch of Q-tips and some Windex, the camera is looking a whole lot better.

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I use Q-tips and a bit of Windex to gently clean the surfaces of the camera. The Windex leaves no residue and doesn’t harm the leatherette, metal or glass (I’ve safely used that for years). I use the super soft toothbrush to gently clean those hard to reach crevices and to polish the surfaces to a nice sheen.

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Looking sharp but not perfect. If I want a totally clean and usable camera I’ll have to remove the top plate and clean the rangefinder and viewfinder elements. The rangefinder is accurate and focus is easy to obtain but it’s just a little dim inside. If you look closely at the center of the lens you will see the patch of fungus. Unfortunately, that is not cleanable.

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The serial number, No. 843945, decodes to 8 = 1958, 4 = April, 3945 is the production sequence number 3,945 since production began in April.

This is one of the earliest examples of this fine camera having been built sometime in April 1958. Yashima used quality materials and production techniques as the fit and feel of the camera are of a much more expensive camera.

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Earliest sales brochure for the Yashica 35. The serial number of the camera pictured is just a bit earlier than my new camera. Here it’s No. 843002 and mine is No. 843945.

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Same brochure as pictured above. The f1.9 lens model is on the left. The serial number on the lens is No. 18275. Mine is No. 20254.

If you look closely, the lens is described as a Yashinon F1.9 even though the lens says Yasinon. Yashima was in the process of changing over or was it them catching a mistake?

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BTW, 17,000 JPY was about $47 USD in April 1958

By the way, it’s generally believed that these two lenses were made for Yashima by Tomioka Optical. Yashima did have a relationship with Zunow Optical by there’s no proof that these lenses are from Zunow.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Earliest Known Yashima Guaranty Doc

An exciting find from Japan. This is the earliest known Yashima (Yashica) guaranty document. The “29” is the Showa year (1954). Other documents that were with this camera puts the date of sale as May 5, 1954, at a camera shop in Yokohama.

Yashima Flex Guaranty Card

The translation of the writing on the lower left. “For cameras manufactured by us with this inspection knowledge attached, we will repair free of charge for spontaneous failures that occurred within 5 years after the acceptance of the user card. Attach the main unit when repairing.”

I believe that the pink paper is a receipt from the camera store that sold this Yashima Flex. It does show that a guarantee period begins on Showa 29.5.5 to 30.5.4 (1954 May 5 to 1955 May 4).

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Back in 1954, the camera shop listed on this receipt says “Onuki Katsura Materials Store”, Yokohama, Noge-machi. Noge-machi is a very popular shopping street in Yokohama and features an exciting array of shops, restaurants, and bars.

This camera shop has been in business since 1934. It’s moved to a different location in Yokohama and is still going strong today. You can visit them here.

Camera Onuki Yokohama

Part of the fun of collecting classic cameras like this Yashima Flex is discovering unexpected documents from when the camera was sold. Understanding the early history of Yashima (Yashica) is important to understand how a startup camera maker in a small village (Suwa) in Nagano Prefecture made its mark on the world by the end of the 1950s.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Who IS this guy? Part 2

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Yashica advertisement from 1959.

In a previous post, I had asked who this gentleman was since he appears in a few ads from this period and has appeared on the cover of a Yashica camera instruction booklet.

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Same image as above except this time in color.

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Now dressed as a “cowboy”. Same time period, late 1959. Sales brochure in German.

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My first thought was that he was a television star or movie star of some note but no solid leads.

Apparently, the bowler hat, pipe, and wink are all part of his act.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Yashica’s Tokyo Headquarters – 1974 and 2019

Yashica opened its new Tokyo headquarters officially in the Summer of 1974. Here’s a before and after picture.

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Yashica’s headquarters as it appeared in August 1974.

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Yashica headquarters building from April 2019. Photos courtesy of Paul Sokk.

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The current building is known as the Kyocera Harajuku Building located at 6-27-8 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo

Kyocera acquired Yashica in 1983 and for the most part, Kyocera continues to operate in many of Yashica’s former properties.

For more about Yashica’s history please check out Paul’s excellent site here.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Yashica 1958 & Yashica 2019

The title is a bit misleading – well actually very misleading as Yashica (the original Japanese company) no longer exists. Yashica was acquired by Kyocera in 1983 and killed off by 2004. My good friend Paul Sokk and I have been on a quest to find some of Yashica’s old factory buildings and because Paul has a sharp eye for details, he was able to find Yashica’s factory in Shimosuwa (Nagano Prefecture) while conducting some research.  The first image below is a scan from a sales brochure that I have from 1958.

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Yashica’s main office building located on the factory campus in Shimosuwa, Nagano Prefecture, Japan in 1958.

Yashica shimosuwa office day

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The same building as seen this April (2019). The company that currently operates from the building (Mutoh) has no ties to either Yashica or Kyocera. Photo courtesy of Paul Sokk.

Notice in the current picture that the building has had an addition added to its near side (enclosing a previous carport) and received a rather mundane paint job especially compared to what I’m sure was a very colorful design originally.

By the way, the current occupant, Mutoh Industries, Ltd., makes large format printing machines. More can be found here.

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Aerial view of the Yashica factory campus with the office building (viewed from behind) in the center.

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The Yashica gym and auditorium as seen today. Look at the aerial view in the image above this one to see the gym as it appeared in the late 1950s. Photo courtesy of Paul Sokk.

Many thanks to Paul Sokk and his wife Kathy for sharing photos from their most recent trip to Japan. Paul is the creator of THE site for anything about Yashica TLRs and early Yashica history the site can be found at www.yashicatlr.com

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.