The ‘Best Of’ 2018 – the most favored pics on my Flickr page

I guess it’s required to do some type of “best of” as the New Year approaches so here’s my take on it. I thought about picking my own favorites from the year but that’s too hard – so I decided to let my Flickr friends do it for me. The following images garnered the most “favorites” during the year but not necessarily the most views. Thanks to all of the followers of my blog here on WordPress – I enjoy reading your posts and I especially enjoy your comments. Peace and Happiness in the New Year! – Chris

My Flickr page can be found here

These are in no particular order and it’s obvious that I take a bunch of pics of cameras! Do you have a favorite? Please let me know in the comments section – thank you!

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My favorite pic of me because it was taken by my lovely wife Carol.

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Thanks so much for stopping by! Have a fantastic 2019 and beyond!!! – 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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

 

Happy SUNday! – Rangefinders Rule

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A trio of 1950s Japanese 35mm rangefinder cameras. Starting from the top, the Yashica YE was made shortly after Yashica acquired Nicca in 1958. In the middle, the Nicca 3-S was one of the last cameras made with the Nicca name and last, the Tower Type-3 which was made by Nicca for the Sears, Roebuck and Company around 1951. All of these were considered to be excellent “copies” of the Leica rangefinder.

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

By the way, I’m having a big after Christmas sale in my online camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com – stop by and see if something strikes your fancy! ^.^

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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Ricoh Five One Nine – 1958

The Ricoh 519 is a 35mm rangefinder camera made by Riken Optical Industries, Ltd. of Tokyo in 1958. The 35mm rangefinder field was extremely crowded in 1958 with Yashica entering the market with its first rangefinder at about the same time. Almost every major and relatively unknown Japanese camera maker had at least an entry in the marketplace. In general, the designs of cameras during this period could range from downright ugly to beautiful – I would place this Ricoh in the beautiful category. I love its lines and thoughtful engineering details. The build quality is exceptional – everything fits nicely and the finishes are extraordinary. Who wouldn’t love the extra attention to detail with the “519” written out in a script?

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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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Minolta XG-M 35mm SLR Set

I have this wonderful Minolta set available for purchase in my Etsy shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com

The XG-M was introduced around 1981 and was Minolta’s best entry into the crowded aperture priority SLR market of the late 1970s and early 1980s.

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This set includes the original Minolta MD 50mm f2 lens as well as a Minolta MD 28 f2.8 wide-angle lens and all that you see pictured above and below.

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It’s a great little camera set with a couple of really nice Minolta lenses. 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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

 

When lens hoods “attack”!

Here’s something you don’t see every day – if ever. What happens to a rubber lens hood (lens shade) when left on for two decades? You get this…

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When I saw this lens my first impression was that it had been in a fire. I had to pry it out of the leather camera bag it was in. Not very pretty at first glance.

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Step 2 – Peeling the “melted” hood away from the lens body. What a gooey mess!

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Success! No damage to the lens and I was able to unscrew what was left of the hood.

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The lens suffered no permanent damage and after a good cleaning looks new.

I imagine that over time the “rubber” deteriorated through some chemical process with the air. Hiding out in a dark leather camera bag probably didn’t help. Lesson learned – if you own one of these monsters go check your camera bag now and toss it before it “attacks”!!!

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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

 

Sears Camera Catalog – 1952

The back cover of the Sears Camera Catalog – 1952

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Of interest, the box that’s depicted for the Tower Type-3 rangefinder (far left, bottom) is not what the box looked like in 1950 and 1951 so I’d guess that it was changed sometime in 1952. 

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Here’s an example of a “modern” Tower blue box. (Detail from a larger web image)

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It’s a wonderful catalog filled with great references and illustrations of the cameras and accessories available in 1952. The full front cover pictured below.

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The Tower Type-3 was made by Nicca for Sears and in the catalog, it’s known simply as the Tower 35.

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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

New reflex mirror in my Rolleicord Ia Type 3 from 1938

After 80 years of use, the original mirror had lost most of its reflectivity and the view available in the viewing hood was greatly diminished.

I ordered a replacement mirror from hugostudio.com and I couldn’t be happier with the service and the quality of the product.

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With the viewing hood and focusing screen removed the view internally shows an abundance of the dirt and grime from 80 years of use. It’s pretty nasty in there!

There are only 4 screws to remove to be able to access the mirror chamber. The mirror essentially slides out from the 4 tabs that hold it in.

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Old and new mirrors side-by-side.

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The mirror chamber with the original mirror removed. A quick dusting and it was ready for the new mirror installation.

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Before and after. What a difference the new mirror makes.

I highly recommend that you change out the original reflex mirror in your TLR if it shows signs of significant deterioration – the view in the focusing hood will be made much brighter and that will lead to more accurate focusing on your part. Most mirrors can be had for around $10 and there are a few sellers on eBay to choose from. The key is the accuracy of the cut as there’s little room for error. If in doubt trace the outline of the mirror that you are replacing and send that (or just the measurements) to the seller.

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Thanks for stopping by and good luck with your project! – 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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Yashica 35 YL – 1959 Rangefinder

A classic 35mm rangefinder film camera from Yashica. This one was built in November 1959. I like the feel of this camera – it’s a tad heavy at just over 700 grams with no film loaded and it feels “heavy” in your hands. It’s “chunky” design with the prominent black top plate is either a love it or hate it feature. I will say this, the view through the large viewfinder is outstanding. Bright and clear with an easy to focus double image focusing spot.

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I kinda like the feel of the odd and different black plastic rectanglar shutter release button – it has a nice touch. The film advance lever is silky smooth and it’s easy to load a film cartridge – lots of space in there for chunky fingers.

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If you’re looking to get into using a late 1950s Japanese made rangefinder I highly recommend the YL or its similar cousin the Yashica 35 YK.

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 © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Fujicarex II by Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.

Unique – Odd – Quirky – Ugly – Gorgeous – Cool – Modern – Sexy – Sophisticated – Clunky – a failure?

Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd. – Tokyo 

Fuji’s first 35mm SLR

Originally released as the Fujicarex in 1962 and sold only in Japan (it listed for ¥25,000). An updated model was released in the United States in July 1964 (in Chicago) as the Fujicarex SLR 35 and for other overseas markets as the Fujicarex II. It listed for around $150 USD without a case. It came with a Fujinon-S f/1.9 5cm lens with an additional f/4 35mm wide angle lens and a f/2.8 80mm portrait lens available.

Billed (advertised) as the “World’s easiest-to-use SLR 35mm camera” – Electric Eye with Cluster Control!

What do you think of its design?

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According to a very reliable Japanese source, the Fujicarex II was available in Japan as a replacement to the original model and that the model II was destined for other overseas markets beyond the U.S. (like Europe). This would lead one to believe that the Fujicarex SLR 35 was only available in America. I haven’t been able to verify that as I’ve never seen the “plain” Fujicarex logo.

So was it a failure? Well, it got Fuji Photo moving in the right direction but I think overall it was just overdesigned and a bit hard to use. A bit like the Yashica Pentamatics – neat cameras that didn’t catch on. From what I understand it was only sold for about three years or so. The next 35mm SLR from Fuji didn’t appear until 1971.

No matter what, this unique camera is seldom seen in today’s collector marketplaces. It would make a wonderful addition to any vintage Japanese SLR collection since it was Fuji’s first SLR. Thanks for stopping by!

Chris

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I’m thinking that this is the original Fujicarex logo (close to the cold shoe).

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This should be the U.S. Fujicarex SLR 35 as there isn’t the “II” under the “Fujicarex”.

 

 

Yashica’s L AF – good things come from plastic rectangles

A true plastic fantastic from Kyocera-Yashica. Released around 1986, this little gem is a modern classic. It gives much better-known (and much more expensive) point & shoots a run for the money.

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Poor man’s T* Series with Zeiss lenses (I’m pretty sure these lenses are Zeiss without the coating).

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Not much control over this camera – it was designed to take pictures without much fuss – and do it well.

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It says Yashica lens but I’m sure it’s a Zeiss – why wouldn’t it? By the way, the 32mm f/3.5 lens is as fast as the other T* Series lenses – with the exception of the Kyocera T Scope (Japanese market T3) which is f/2.8

Good condition Yashica L AF’s are not common on online auction sites but nice ones still go for less than $40 or so. This nearly mint one went for $20!

Sharp contrasty lens – quick but not super quick AF but excellent auto exposure – perfect pics nearly every shot!

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Images were taken on Fujicolor Superia color negative film. No post-production on any of these outside pics.

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Headed our way from Japan!

Thanks for stopping by!

Chris