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FSU Former Soviet Union RF This forum is for the Former Soviet Union rangefinder cameras, especially the many and various Fed, Zorki, and Kiev.

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Kiev 4A is what I held onto
Old 10-18-2013   #41
Kragmeister
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Kiev 4A is what I held onto

Greetings,

My first FSU RF was a Kiev 4A with the various lenses. I enjoyed the look the old Zeiss design lenses gave but decided to get a Bessa R and LTM versions of the Kiev lenses. My main motivation was to get a modern, affordable body with which I could use a LTM collapsible lens. Worked great, but then life got in the way and I had to sell off the valuable stuff, so off went the Bessa.

Since it is what I have I recently pulled out the Kiev 4A and Sekonic L-208 meter for available light B&W at an aunt's wedding and it worked great. I don't mind the "Contax hold", removing the back to change film, etc. My only nitpick with these is the film counter being easily bumped and changed.

As for Cambridge, I recall going there in the late '80s to pick up a zoom lens for a Fuji SLR. Wonder if they still have any of that stuff.

Later,
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Old 11-11-2013   #42
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Haha, I don't know which I'm enjoying more, the original ad or the replies

I just checked ebay, for all those non hackers that don't pack the gear to serve in my beloved Corps. You can still redeem yourself for the paltry sum of approx. $50.00. It's not too late to join up with the team and come in for the big win.

Your friend,

Gunnery Sgt. Kiev
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Old 03-07-2015   #43
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I just bought this Kiev-4AM with Jupiter-8M (improved version, both from 1980) and this stereo adapter in mint condition. Eur. 95,- which is pretty much for such a camera but not so much incl. the stereo adapter.

The camera is working fine but the Zorki-6 is even better in handling. These Contax copies are not really bad but even the Contax is a design before WWII.
In a few details the Kiev-4AM is an improved version but in general not many things changed.

In the mean time I have 2 pcs. Zorki-6 bodies. I think this is my favorite FSU camera. Together with a J-8 and J-12. In time I will search for a J-9.
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Old 04-03-2015   #44
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i have a Kiev 4a, beautiful camera to use.
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Old 10-27-2015   #45
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Resurrecting this thread. Several of the posts made me laugh-out-loud, or LOL as the kids say nowadays.

So here's a photo of a fantastic rangefinder! But which one exactly are we talking about?


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Old 10-27-2015   #46
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In fact a no name Kiev/Contax is a Kiev build with German parts in Kiev ... An early Kiev (or Contax) seems to be the best camera ever build of this type of camera.

I also like my Kiev-4AM with J-8M.
For my two Zorki-6's I have, in the mean time, found a J-9.
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Old 10-27-2015   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobby_novatron View Post
Resurrecting this thread. Several of the posts made me laugh-out-loud, or LOL as the kids say nowadays.

So here's a photo of a fantastic rangefinder! But which one exactly are we talking about?


I hav the one at the left, the IIa, despite of looking similar they are indeed very different.
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Old 10-28-2015   #48
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Actually, the "close relative" to the Kiev-4A pictured above, should be the Contax-II, while ay left we see a very fine, post-war Contax-IIa, equipped with its excellent Sonnar 50mm./f:1,5.

Despite an outer similarity to the pre-war Contax-II, the IIa is a completely new and redesigned camera. Both are magnificent instruments to use.

I would like to note that the so-called "No-Name Contax" actually isn't a Kiev made with german parts, but a Kiev-4A without any "KIEV" logo, produced for the US market and usually equipped with the Carl Zeiss Jena (DDR) Sonnar 50mm./f:2. These Kievs were very-well finished/controlled, like most of the 4 and 4A produced between 1967-'69.

It's true though, that very early Kievs (let's say made between 1948 and 1949, still included parts made in Germany with the new tools/machinery made in Jena-Saalfeld where the Soviet technicians and workers were trained, before the production lines would have been sent (along with a number of "voluntary" Zeissianern) to Kiev.

Best wishes,

E.L.
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Old 10-28-2015   #49
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Hi,

And it's a good thing too.

My Contax II (1936) failed completely due to both tapes failing and excessive wear. Luckily a Kiev shutter cradle was transplanted into it and it's back here and working. The technician said that Kiev parts were interchangeable...

One advantage of the/my Kiev IIa over the/my Contax II is that the USSR made lens is coated.

Regards, David
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Old 10-28-2015   #50
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You mean I have been shooting "the best rangefinder ever built" all this time and never knew it?

I must be amazingly fortunate because, based on the price I paid, the seller never knew it either.

It is still working after all these years so there might be something to it.
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Old 10-28-2015   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CameraQuest View Post
Russian No Name Kiev 4A
Protax 4A proclaimed "The World's finest 35mm Rangefinder Camera"

Did Thepholographer.com write that? Sounds like their copy for the Lomo LCA-120..

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Old 10-28-2015   #52
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After they moved into the old B&H space on 17th, for years the lost wandered in and bought from these guys. Everything was the same price, so there were some incredible bargains at the high end.

Gone for a long time, I looked through the remnants when they were stored at the relocated Wall Street Camera across from the WTC, right before they closed. There was not much.
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Old 04-28-2017   #53
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Help!

I have just received a Kiev 4a. It is to be the body for my collection of Zeiss-mount lenses. My IIIa is no longer reliable. I have put a roll through the Kiev, but cannot figure out how to rewind the film. There seems to be no release button or lever. Can anyone help?
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Old 04-28-2017   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfasud View Post
Help!

I have just received a Kiev 4a. It is to be the body for my collection of Zeiss-mount lenses. My IIIa is no longer reliable. I have put a roll through the Kiev, but cannot figure out how to rewind the film. There seems to be no release button or lever. Can anyone help?
If it is a Kiev 4M or 4AM then turn one of the back unlock key to the tiny orange dot mark then rewind the film.
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Thanks
Old 04-28-2017   #55
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Thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by xayraa33 View Post
If it is a Kiev 4M or 4AM then turn one of the back unlock key to the tiny orange dot mark then rewind the film.

It worked just as you said. Thank you for the info.

Ciao, David
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Old 04-28-2017   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfasud View Post
It worked just as you said. Thank you for the info.

Ciao, David
Good to hear, the Arsenal factory cut too many corners in the original pre war Contax RF camera design for the sake of high production numbers and it really showed in lousy quality and dubious design changes , especially on those last models.
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Old 04-30-2017   #57
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So far, It looks like i have one of the good ones!
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