wordless wednesday (almost wordless)

Mamiya C33 twin-lens reflex (TLR) camera from 1965.

Studio Camera – Fujifilm X-A10 with Fujinon Super EBC XC 16-50mm Lens

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

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Yashima YashicaMat – 1957

Yashicamat, Yashica-Mat, YashicaMat – they’re all the same camera, and as was typical for Yashima (later Yashica) they had a difficult time staying consistent when it came to the way they named their cameras. At this point in time, Yashima had only been around since 1953 so I’ll cut them some slack. By 1958, Yashima became Yashica as the company adopted the name of its cameras.

So here is a super early sales brochure (Spring 1957) for the new YashicaMat 120 roll film twin-lens reflex (TLR) camera, the YashicaMat.

High-res scans are posted below from my own brochure.

Front cover.

What I find interesting is that the camera that’s depicted is the very first version of the model with a 75mm Lumaxar f3.5 taking lens (bottom lens) that were only available for a very short time before being replaced by the lens described in the brochure – 80mm Lumaxar f3.5 lens. There’s no written history to definitively know why the change was made so quickly or why they switched at all. It’s possible Tomioka Optical had difficulty providing enough 75mm lenses to meet the production demands of Yashima.

Inside centerspread. Look closely and you can just barely see 75mm on the bottom portion of the lens retaining ring (bottom lens). Both lenses say Lumaxar with the viewing lens (top lens) the clearest of the two.

Back cover scan below.

Back cover. Yashima’s camera line-up as of early 1957 (newest models).

If you look closely at this back cover you can see Yashima’s full corporate name – Yashima Optical Industries, Company, Limited, and their headquarters were located in Shibuya in Tokyo. The factory was in Suwa, Nagano Prefecture, and later Shimosuwa.

Thanks for stopping by and if you chase down a nice Yashica-Mat that you like be sure to check out my good friend Paul Sokk’s excellent TLR site at http://www.yashicatlr.com to learn more about the camera that you’re about to purchase. – 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.

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Yashima Flex – 1954

Before they were known as Yashica they were Yashima and this is one of the first cameras to feature their original name. This is one of the nicest TLRs in my collection and I was thrilled to find it many years ago on an auction site in Japan. The original lenses were marked Tomioka Tri-Lausar and later just Yashinon. Tomioka Optical eventually became part of the Yashica Company.

This is an incredibly difficult camera to find for sale anywhere but a few do show up from time to time. Your best bet is to keep an eye out for one on Buyee (Yahoo Japan Auction) in Japan. 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 © 2015-2022 Chasing Classic Cameras with Chris (Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic), Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

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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.

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Fujicaflex – Superman as a TLR!

Certainly a tough but worthy camera to chase. As of today, there are only two for sale on eBay and both are in Japan.

Heavy metal!
An example of a complete set. This wasn’t my camera but it was the same seller that sold me mine (from Thailand).

If Superman was disguised as a TLR he’d be the Fijicaflex by Fuji Photo Film Company. 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.

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wordless wednesday

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, are the property of this blog 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.

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Yashica Heavyweights – 1960s glass & brass

Here is a fun visual comparison between three early Yashica cameras.

Yashica’s first 35mm SLR released in early 1960. The Pentamatic 35 with its fast f/1.8 lens was a neck breaker to be sure.
Yashica’s first modern 35mm SLR released shortly after the end of the Pentamatic series in 1962.
First released in 1964, the Yashica Mat EM (Exposure Meter) was and still is a very popular TLR (twin-lens reflex) 120 roll film camera. It features a built-in exposure meter powered by selenium cells. The meter on mine is still working and is accurate when shooting negative films.

What’s the heaviest camera in your collection? Not pictured here I’d say my fully decked out Canon F-1 with a motor drive and big f/1.2 lens is crazy heavy. I’ll have to dig it out and post the results here soon.

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, are the property of this blog 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.

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Yashica’s last TLR – Chasing a True Classic!

Yashica’s (Kyocera by this point) last TLR model. This one was part of the last run of the model before production shut down in 1986. Yashica (originally named Yashima) started off in 1953 with the obscure Pigeonflex TLR followed by the Yashima Flex and then continued to build TLRs way longer than the market could bear (or need). The good news is that the 124G can be found today in great quantities and cameras as “young” as 35 years-old.
It’s a very affordable way to get into medium format photography and in the case of this model, be able to use both 120 and 220 roll film giving you either 12 or 24 exposures.

After about 33 years of making TLRs, this was Yashica’s best.
A beauty – here’s what a modern TLR looked like back in 1985.
The design of the last box that held the 124G (1985-1986).
This gorgeous camera was the first to carry the company name – Yashica Flex made in 1954.

For contrast, compare the Yashima Flex to the Yashica Mat 124G. Their excellent build quality remained throughout the decades. If you’re chasing one of these for your collection you’re in luck because Yashica made a bunch of 124Gs and there’s a bunch still out there. Expect to pay a premium for mint examples but be careful, they’re still older cameras and a host of bad things can happen to them from lack of use and improper storage. Ask lots of questions of the seller if you’re buying online and look for sellers with excellent reputations for selling quality classic and vintage cameras. BTW, not too many of the original Yashima Flex cameras will look like my example pictured above. I was so very lucky to buy mine from the original owner in Japan who obviously kept it in pristine condition both physically and mechanically.

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, are the property of this blog 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.

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Tuesday’s Camera – Yashica A Twin-lens Reflex

We love Yashicas here on the blog and I can’t tell you how many enjoyable hours have been spent chasing these classic beauties from the 1950s.

This one was made in 1962 and features Yashikor lenses (the bottom lens is the “taking lens” and the top lens is the “viewing lens”.

As simple as simple gets so you’re likely to find one of these in a fully functioning condition. Not much can go wrong with these unless they’ve been abused or stored improperly.
The focus knob is on the right and the film advance knob is on the left. Simple.
The little door on the back has a red plastic window under it so that you can see which exposure you’re on as you’re advancing the film. Simple.
An accessory shoe and the two film spool knobs.
Opening and closing the camera is done by this rather large knob on the bottom.
You’ll get 12 exposures from a roll of 120 roll film, either color negative, color transparencies, or black and white negatives in a large 6 x 6 cm (2 1/4 x 2 1/4″). BTW, that is the backside of the taking lens. If you look closely you can see the leaf shutter inside the lens.
What a deal! $29.95 and the leather case for 1/5th the cost.
One of the easiest instruction booklets to follow. The Yashica A was made for beginner photogs on a budget.

So there you have it, our pick of the day. If you’re looking to get into medium format film photography then give this Yashica model a try. Use my example as a guide as to what to look for when you’re looking at purchasing one for yourself. No corrosion, complete leatherette coverings, clean and clear lenses, and no missing parts. Good luck!

May I suggest a visit to my good friend Paul Sokk’s site at http://www.yashicatlr.com/66ModelsPage1.html for some of the best information you’ll find anywhere about all things Yashica, Nicca, Leotax, and more.

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, are the property of this blog 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.

SUNday Spotlight! – Pigeonflex

Hello all! Happy Sunday and thanks for stopping by.

Before Yashica was Yashica they were Yashima and Yashima’s first camera was the oddly named Pigeonflex.

pigeonflex with dirt

Proudly displaying 67 years of dirt, dust, soot, and grime. I’ve since cleaned it up (which was super fun) and as you see it here it was fully working! Credit goes to those talented craftspeople in Suwa, Nagano Prefecture, Japan those many decades ago.

I purchased this from a Japanese seller from Hokkaido, Higashi-ku, Sapporo, Japan a few years back.

pigeonflex full dirt

Yashima’s Pigeonflex Twin-lens Reflex (TLR)

A short two years later, this was the first camera from Yashima to carry the Yashica name – confused yet?

yashicaflex s 1955

Yashica Flex S from 1955

Have a beautiful day and be sure to stop by my camera shop hosted by Etsy 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 © 2015-2020 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.