Yashima Pigeonflex – my oldest Yashica

Confusing title to be sure.

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Before Yashica there was Yashima and before that, there was a Pigeonflex. Yashima 1953. That’s 65 years of Japanese dirt, dust, and fuzz – purchased from a collector from Sapporo, Japan. In my eyes… it’s beautiful! The Tomioka lenses are clean and clear. The camera works great too! Made by the wonderful craftspeople of Yashima / Yashica in beautiful Nagano Prefecture along the shores of Lake Suwa.

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The original Pigeonflex on the left and the first ever TLR to bear the Yashima Flex name on the right. The Pigeonflex has been left in its “as found” condition… proudly showing its 65 plus years of dirt and grime. The Yashima Flex is also in its “as found” condition but it has lived a more protected life. Basically, these are the first two cameras that Yashica (as it has come to be known) manufactured.

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Thanks for stopping by! Be sure to visit my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com as you may see something that strikes your fancy! – 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.

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Cute 1980s Yashica Sales Brochures

Even a few Yashica-Kyocera brochures too!

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Great stuff! 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-Mat 124G Box – 1985

Just a quick post to share with you what Yashica’s last TLR box design looked like. After a long run that lasted from 1953 to 1986, this was the end of the road for Yashica (thanks to new owners the Kyocera Corporation).

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Here is the earliest box in my collection – from 1954

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Back when Yashica was Yashima Kogaku Seiki Co., Ltd.

Kyocera purchased Yashica on a dark day in 1983. This box obviously is from very near the end of the run for the Mat 124G and puts it post-takeover. By serial number, I estimate that my 124G (SN224XXX) puts my camera at being made in 1985.

This is likely the last version of the instruction booklet for the 124G.

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This one is dated 8506 (Jun 1985) 3rd printing. Notice that Yashica is now just a division of Kyocera and they were forced from their longtime head office in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo.

OK, enough Yashica trivia for one day! Thanks for sticking around! – Chris

BTW, I’ve listed a few more new items in my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com – see you there!

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.

Asahi Pentax H2 – a favorite that I just keep letting go!

Every time I find a good looking H2 I sell it! What’s up with that?

I’ve owned more than a few of these over the years – some worked flawlessly and more than a few had shutter lock-up problems. They accept M42 screw-in lenses (just like my Yashicas) and I certainly have plenty of lenses to choose from but there’s something about the Asahi Pentax SLRs that keeps me moving on from them.

I think they look great, they generally feel good in my hand, and people swear by them. So why do I keep hunting for them only to sell them off after a short while? I usually sell them for just about what I paid for them so it’s certainly not the profit angle.

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I think I know deep down what the reason is… I don’t need to start an Asahi Pentax collection and add to my already bursting at the seems camera collection. I’m not getting any younger so I should be selling, not buying!

Here are a few others that I no longer own –

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This one was still mint in its original box but I still let it go.

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A great camera that took giant negatives – I shot one roll and put it away. I sold this one about four years ago (it was so nice I was afraid to ding it).

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So when I’m bored I peek and poke around the Asahi Pentax aisles of my favorite auction sites – maybe I’ll stumble on a keeper one of these days, or maybe not. 

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

Yashica-Mat 124G

The Yashica-Mat 124G was Yashica’s last TLR in a long line of twin-lens reflex cameras dating back to 1953. The likely end date for the 124G was 1986. That’s a phenomenal run for a TLR.

Think about the cameras that were being marketed in the 1980s – the Canon New F-1N, the Canon T90 and EOS 650, a gem from Nikon like the F3, autofocus and autoexposure 35s from Fujifilm, Canon, Olympus and a host of others. TLRs were dinosaurs in a George Jetson world but there was Yashica plodding away building 124Gs for a world that didn’t need or want them.

To be fair, Yashica was also making some modern cameras too during this period that were very well received building on the successes of their pioneering electronic cameras from the late 1960s and the 1970s. But all was not well for Yashica. 1983 saw the takeover by Kyocera and except for a few surprising winners now and then, Kyocera was not committed to advancing the Yashica brand.

I believe that the Yashica-Mat 124G during this period did not suffer from its association with Kyocera. Early 1980, 1981 and 1982 124s look and feel just as good as the later 124Gs that were made during the later Kyocera years.

The “G” in the 124G indicates that Yashica used gold plated contacts in their electronic CdS light meter connections implying that it was a better way to make a more reliable connection.

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With the viewfinder hood closed power to the light meter was shut off conserving battery power. Here the shutter speed is set at 1/250 and the aperture at f16. The red meter needle is deflected to the left.

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With the hood opened, the meter is now powered and with the shutter set at 1/30th and the aperture opened up to f3.5 the red meter needle is deflected to the right. The ASA is set a 400.

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In my opinion, there’s nothing cheap about the Yashica-Mat 124G. I think it’s actually quite modern looking given that a TLR is far from advanced design and technology. Yes, Yashica switched from using chrome metal trim items in favor of black plastic pieces but have you ever looked closely at Canon’s T90 and EOS 650? Even the F3 uses plastic – done well there’s nothing wrong with it. The weight difference between my venerable mid-1960s Yashica-Mat EM and my 124G is about one ounce.

In summary, if you want to experience medium format photography at its best you can’t go wrong with either a classic from Yashica like the Yashica D, EM or Mat or this modern classic the Yashica-Mat 124G. The Tomioka made optics are sharp, the Copal shutters are accurate and the build quality from Yashica was second to none (millions made).

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to visit my shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com

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.

Sometimes silly is just silly – collecting Yashica stuff 101.1

Carol and I have been Yashica fanatics since the early 1970s and over the years we’ve collected some pretty silly stuff related to Yashica.

In 1962 the Yashica marketing guys and gals came up with a cute little fellow to act as a marketing mascot of sorts to promote Yashica’s extensive new line of SLRs and the next generation of 35mm rangefinder cameras. Yashica’s ‘Sailor Boy’ (never officially named) was born courtesy of a design executed by Modern Plastics of Japan.

The ‘Sailor Boy’ appeared in Yashica’s sales brochures and occasionally in a few instruction booklets. Here he’s pictured in an early flyer for the Minimatic-S (1963).

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This is the larger dealer display ‘Sailor Boy’ – about 20cm tall.

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Here’s the dealer display ‘Sailor Boy’ helping to promote the new (1962) J-3.

Anyway, here’s where the real silliness comes in. When you start to discover all of the different ways that Yashica employed their little mascot it’s a fun challenge to find him on some pretty unlikely things. Here he’s promoting the release of the Electro 35 – the world’s first electronic 35mm camera (1966).

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Of course he’d be on a couple of beach bags – he’s Yashica’s ‘Sailor Boy’.

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Whether riding a smiling dolphin or dancing in a grass skirt on a remote island, the ‘Sailor Boy’ was always there to remind you to take your non-waterproof Yashica Electro 35 along for the fun!

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

BTW, there’s some neat new stuff (cameras and gear) over in our shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com – there’s always a few classic cameras to pick from as well as a nice collection of lenses.

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 – Yashica-Mat 124G

Perfectly operating Yashica-Mat 124G twin-lens reflex (TLR) 6×6 cm medium format film camera. Whew!

The last TLR in a very long line of innovative and quality made cameras by Yashica. The last 124G rolled off the assembly line at the Okaya factory in 1986 (Kyocera was in “control” and was about to kill off the Yashica name. Yashica’s first TLRs? The Pigeonflex and then the Yashima Flex (1953, 1954).

This model’s serial number is 164216 (roughly 1983) and it’s never been offered for sale before. I purchased it directly from the original owner who kept it unused as part of his collection. It’s been thoroughly tested – the light meter is spot on (I’ve installed a new battery), the shutter is accurate at all speeds, the lenses are crystal clear, and the aperture blades are snappy and oil free. I see only the slightest specs of dust on the reflex mirror inside which is typical (even straight from the factory there was dust as the mirror chamber is not sealed). It’s a joy to use and all controls operate as they should – smooth and precise. I’ve installed new light seals after carefully cleaning away the old ones. The CdS meter is built-in and coupled. BTW, these later model 124Gs are built as rugged as any of Yashica’s previous models – you get the benefits of a newer TLR with a fresher CdS meter with gold contacts. You should be able to use this camera with proper care for another 30 years or more!

It’s available for purchase in my camera shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com or you can buy it directly from here by clicking on the PayPal payment button and get free USA shipping!

Vintage 1983 Yashica-Mat 124G Twin-lens Reflex (TLR) Medium Format Camera (120 or 220 Roll Film) Producing 6×6 cm Negatives & Slides

Nearly new Yashica-Mat 124G TLR that's been completely tested and is in 100% fully operational condition. Open the box, load some film and you're a medium format square shooter! I've installed a new battery and new light seals. It comes with the original plastic Yashica lens cap (correct for this model). This camera is perfect for the discriminating collector or an active photographer. They don't come nicer than this well cared for beauty. It will ship FOR FREE within the USA via USPS Priority Mail and I'll mail it worldwide with some exceptions. Please contact me first for a quote. Thanks, Chris

$475.00

In the Shop – Fuji Smart Shot 35mm Camera Kit – Light Blue

In the shop today I’ve added a rather hard to find light blue version of this popular and fun Fuji camera. The Fuji Smart Shot was released in April 1994 for a selling price in Japan of ¥3,800

You can purchase this still new in its original box camera directly from here on this post by clicking on the PayPal button or over in my shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com

Fuji Light Blue Smart Shot 35mm Compact Film Camera Kit with Fujinon f/8 35mm Lens, Film, Battery, Strap, Instructions

Super hard to find still new in its box, this Fuji light blue version of this popular and fun to use Fuji is unused and in mint condition. It comes complete with its original box (with packaging materials), an unused nylon strap, the instruction sheet, a roll of expired (07/2010) Fujicolor 100 film, and a new Fujifilm AA battery. The camera has been tested and works perfectly. I’ll ship this in the USA for FREE via USPS First Class Mail and worldwide with some exceptions – please ask for a quote first. Thanks, Chris

$68.75

In the Shop – Canon New F-1 Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Edition

New in my shop today is this awesome Canon New F-1 with AE Finder FN, Canon FD 50mm f1.8 Lens and the Official 35mm Camera of the 1984 Olympic Games Lens Cap (plus all boxes, straps, caps, instruction booklets, warranty cards).

This is the first time that this set has been offered for sale and it’s in nearly perfect cosmetic condition and in 100% fully working (tested) condition.

The best Canon SLR to come out of the early 1980s – by far!

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The Canon New F-1 with AE Finder FN is a professional camera that combines a balance between the electronic and mechanical worlds – its electromechanical hybrid shutter provides greater overall accuracy and a wider range of shutter speeds. If the battery fails, you can continue shooting at any of the high speeds or B, all of which are mechanically controlled. A new Energizer battery has been installed and all metering features have been tested. Shutter speeds range from B to 1/2000.

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Complete set including the special New F-1 camera strap.

The AE Finder FN is for aperture-priority AE. Full manual exposure control is still possible. Three types of metering are possible – Center-weighted Average Metering, Selective-area Metering, and Spot Metering.

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The camera is in mint minus condition as there are a few marks on the baseplate where the motor drive was attached. The remainder of the body, the optics, and the lens are in full mint condition. Two rolls of film have been used with flawless results.

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The body serial number, LA 8541 matches the original paperwork from Canon. The lens serial number 7200857 matches its paperwork too. The camera body date code is Y227 which is 1984 and the lens is Y116 which is also 1984. This is a newer model in the LA Olympics run which I believe finished around 9500.

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The AE Finder FN removed showing the focusing screen AE installed.

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You can purchase this lovely set here directly from me by clicking on the payment button (PayPal) below or it can be purchased through my shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com

Canon New F-1 AE Finder Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Edition 35mm SLR Camera Set with Canon FD 50mm f1.8 Lens

Complete set from 1984 - Canon's Limited Special Edition 1984 LA Olympics camera and lens set. In nearly full mint condition just off new. It's been fully tested and all systems are fully operational! Please take the time to check out the many detailed pictures I've provided in this post (on the blog) and in my shop at http://www.ccstudio2380.com. Additional pictures are available upon request. I'll mail this gorgeous set anywhere in the US FOR FREE via USPS Priority Mail and I'll ship worldwide with some exceptions. Please contact me first for an international shipping quote. Thanks, Chris

$925.00

 

The Yashica YE & YF – a definitive history

My good friend Paul Sokk would argue that nothing about the history of Yashica could ever be “definitive”. Yashica no longer exists and its previous owners (Kyocera) could care less about the history of the company that it killed off back in the late 1980s. But that’s where Paul really shines – he’s always researching and searching for that extra crumb of information that leads to the next crumb that eventually leads you to the cake.

The cake, in this case, is the latest addition to his amazing website. Paul deftly guides us through the complicated maze that was Yashica and details its relationship with the Nicca Camera Company and the wonderful Leica copies that were produced during the 1950s. Many of the conclusions that Paul describes are found nowhere else on the web and to his credit, no detail is too small or unimportant to look at.

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The family – Yashica YE, Nicca 3-F, Tower Type-3 (top to bottom)

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The Yashica-Nicca YF (the lens is not the standard lens for this body)

Please stroll on over to Paul’s site (be sure to bookmark it) for everything you ever wanted to know about the early days of the Yashica-Nicca collaboration. Paul quickly puts to rest many bits of intentional and unintentional misinformation that’s been floating around the web about this subject.

Paul’s site can be reached here.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Be sure to visit the “gift shop” before you leave today for some great deals on some vintage cameras and equipment – http://www.ccstudio2380.com

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.