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Fun With an Old Junk Retine Ia
Old 06-16-2014   #1
Steve M.
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Fun With an Old Junk Retine Ia

I bought this Kodak Retina Ia w/ Xenar 50 3.5 lens for small money, but it's pretty beat up. The focus is real stiff, viewfinder is cloudy, the shutter speeds needs a lot of pressure to change them, and the aperture won't stop down all the way unless you focus the lens out. In other words, it's a typical ebay Retina. After 5 shots w/ it (Tri-X in D76) I said to heck w/ this, and pulled the film out and put it in another camera.

My other ebay Retina Ia arrived today, and it's the exact opposite. It has an Ektar 50 3.5 lens, and everything about it is easy and smooth. Figuring I'd sell the beater Retina for whatever I could get, at the last minute I decided to look at those 5 shots. You know, they're not too bad. Scanned on my old Epson 2450 flatbed. I should read that thread on the image sizing here, as they sure look smaller than they used to.

These are scale focus cameras w/ no rangefinder. Being out of practice, things are not really on the money, and close ups are not it's forte, but this old thing may be worth keeping. Anyone else got an old beater Retina that performs better than it looks?
























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Old 06-16-2014   #2
Solinar
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I love the rendition of a good Tessar formula. The Xenar is no slouch.

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Old 06-16-2014   #3
colyn
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The Schneider-Kreusnach lens on Retinas are top notched whether they be Xenar or Xenon..

What you describe I could fix and have it working like new in a few hours so the camera is well worth keeping and fixing at some point..
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Old 06-16-2014   #4
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The folding Retinas are some of the greatest classics of all time. And the Xenars are outstanding lenses - coated or uncoated.

You never have to make an excuse for using a Xenar.
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Old 06-16-2014   #5
farlymac
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I had to repair one for a friend of mine. He got it free because the hinge of the film door had snapped off. I wound up getting another camera for $20 just for the door, which he paid for, and then told me to keep it when I got the original one repaired. I might fix it up if I come across another scrap one.


Broken Hinge by br1078phot, on Flickr
Just click on the photo to see the rest of the repairs I did on it.

They are wonderful little cameras, with great lenses.


Holy Trinity Church Interior Modified by br1078phot, on Flickr

Well worth giving it a cleaning. Shoe polish will restore the outer coverings to a solid color. I liked the Ia that I fixed for a friend so much, I went ahead and got the IIa for the rangefinder.

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Old 06-18-2014   #6
thawkins
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I have a Retina Ia and a IIa. Both great cameras. I purchased the ia when starting flight school in 1967. The IIa came twenty five years later. The lens on both cameras are fantastic. Better than any Nikon glass I have ever owned and at east equal to some of my lens from Leica. While maybe not financially wise to have the camera rebuilt if you do the reward of great images will outweigh the cost.
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Old 10-21-2014   #7
pinafore2
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I inherited mine from my dad, who bought it second hand in 1956.
Still in use - by regular use you can't kill a 1a !
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Old 10-21-2014   #8
RichL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farlymac View Post
I had to repair one for a friend of mine. He got it free because the hinge of the film door had snapped off. I wound up getting another camera for $20 just for the door, which he paid for, and then told me to keep it when I got the original one repaired. I might fix it up if I come across another scrap one.
Well worth giving it a cleaning. Shoe polish will restore the outer coverings to a solid color. I liked the Ia that I fixed for a friend so much, I went ahead and got the IIa for the rangefinder.

PF
I have had good results from using small brass brads for mounting similar hinges. Nip them short and use them as rivets.
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Old 10-24-2014   #9
farlymac
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichL View Post
I have had good results from using small brass brads for mounting similar hinges. Nip them short and use them as rivets.
The hinge was pretty well bent, and Chris in New Zealand said I'd probably never get it back straight again, so a full replacement was in order.

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Old 06-22-2015   #10
Sid836
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I have never been a fan of Kodak film cameras. But, last Sunday, in a local flea market a tinny Kodak Retina caught my attention. I had seen on my computer screen Retinas before, but never one in real life. I have been amazed on how small and thin it looked. I have bought it for a mere nothing as the seller thought that the shutter button was stuck (it needs film to get it engaged). In no time became one of my favorites. I am running a first test roll, the shutter seems to be accurate and I am anxious to see what the f3.5 Xenar can deliver.
After looking it up it is a Retina I (type 013).
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Old 06-22-2015   #11
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I have a 1a, but I can't get the shot counter dial back together correctly so it will work, does anyone know the trick?
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Old 06-22-2015   #12
Sid836
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Does this help any?
http://retinarescue.com/retina1alever.html
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Old 06-22-2015   #13
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Yes! Thank you!

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Old 06-23-2015   #14
Sid836
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U r welcome!
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