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Zeiss Contax Forum for the classic Zeiss Contax I, II, III, IIa, IIIa , G series, and if you want to push it, the nice Contax point and shoots. Some spill over from the Kievs, the Soviet copy of the Contax II/III can also be expected. Plus the ONLY production camera ever made in classic Zeiss Contax Rangefinder mount WITH TTL metering ... the Voigtlander Bessa R2C.

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Mark Hama CLA
Old 11-16-2016   #1
Mathieu18
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Mark Hama CLA

Thanks all for the feedback on the Sonnar 8.5 cm. I was also curious, since Henry has a 6 year wait list, has anyone sent a Contax IIa (or any other) to Mark Hama for a CLA? He did a good job on my Yashica Mat EM, but I know those are his specialty. He sent a reasonable quote back, but thought I'd see if anyone had experience with him.

Related, is it possible to get new leather with the Zeiss Ikon stamp on it? Mine isn't in great shape, but I hate to lose that mark.

Thanks again.
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Old 11-16-2016   #2
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I've never sent anything to him (learned a long time ago to only buy cameras that could be replaced for very little money or fixed myself), but I did find this thread. Hope it helps.

http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...d.php?t=115291
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Old 11-16-2016   #3
Mark A. Fisher
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He did a terrific job on a Yashica-Mat for me, but I have no experience with his work beyond that.
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Old 11-16-2016   #4
Larry Cloetta
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu18 View Post
Thanks all for the feedback on the Sonnar 8.5 cm. I was also curious, since Henry has a 6 year wait list, has anyone sent a Contax IIa (or any other) to Mark Hama for a CLA? He did a good job on my Yashica Mat EM, but I know those are his specialty. He sent a reasonable quote back, but thought I'd see if anyone had experience with him.
Just curious, what was the quote for the Contax IIa CLA? He's done a nice, timely, and more than reasonable CLA for me on a Yashica D, but a IIa is an entirely different beast altogether, which is why most people won't touch them, or will touch them when they probably shouldn't. If Mark Hama was doing competent CLA's on Contax rangefinders as reasonably and as timely as his work for me on Yashicas has been, that would be a godsend.
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Old 11-16-2016   #5
Mathieu18
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I've heard he can be slow, he did take an extra week on my EM but came back in good shape. His replies are perhaps terse, but he's always answered me as well, I've emailed him 5 or 6 times. I think I'll give him a shot with the IIa and see how it goes. I didn't expect it to even be a functional body but seems to be in decent shape. I think it's real, but wondering if it has a Kiev bottom plate, isn't it supposed to have a flip out stabilizer of sorts?
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Old 11-17-2016   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu18 View Post
I've heard he can be slow, he did take an extra week on my EM but came back in good shape. His replies are perhaps terse, but he's always answered me as well, I've emailed him 5 or 6 times. I think I'll give him a shot with the IIa and see how it goes. I didn't expect it to even be a functional body but seems to be in decent shape. I think it's real, but wondering if it has a Kiev bottom plate, isn't it supposed to have a flip out stabilizer of sorts?
The bottom flip-out stabilizers ended with the pre-war Contax models.
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Old 11-17-2016   #7
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From what I have seen, he is excellent for TLR Yashicas.
But not for other things.
I sent him a Contax Contessa RF and a Zeiss Ikon Vitessa. The Contax was returned with an inoperative film frame count mechanism, and random shutter non-cocks. The Vitessa was returned with the RF mechanism off.
He corrected the Contax on the second attempt but this experience has soured him for me, as these were faults as a result of his work.
I'm somewhere on Henry's list...
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Old 11-22-2016   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregm61 View Post
The bottom flip-out stabilizers ended with the pre-war Contax models.
Nope. The Kiev II, III, 2a and 3a still have it.

This is the first time ever that I read that a Contax IIa is suspected to have a Kiev bottom plate (which is something totally impossible of course, for simple dimensional reasons). That internet babble has not ceased to surprise us yet.
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Old 11-24-2016   #9
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Originally Posted by Highway 61 View Post
Nope. The Kiev II, III, 2a and 3a still have it.
I was just talking about Contax models, which Kievs are not. The post war, West German Contax IIA and IIIA baseplates do not have the flip out stabilizers on them.

I don't even consider Kievs when I think about Contax cameras, just like I don't consider Japanese screw-mount bodies when talking about screw mount Leicas.
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Oops
Old 11-25-2016   #10
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Oops

Sorry for the confusion I caused. I am very new to Contax RF cameras. I'd read they were supposed to have the flip out stabilizer, but my IIa did not so I was wondering if it might have a fake body part, as it otherwise appears real. Looks like I was confused.
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Old 11-25-2016   #11
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Originally Posted by Gregm61 View Post
I don't even consider Kievs when I think about Contax cameras, just like I don't consider Japanese screw-mount bodies when talking about screw mount Leicas.
Who knows what the Contax rangefinder line would have become if the Germans located in the Eastern part of their country, alongside with the Soviets, hadn't launched the Volga project (to become the Kiev line) in 1946-1947. Thanks to this, the Zeiss Ikon plant at Saalfeld (I came by this city last week) could go on with producing some "prewar" Contax models after the war and, moreover, the Carl Zeiss Jena plant could go on with producing Sonnars, many of them being afterwards fitted on the new West-German Contax IIa bodies in 1950, because at that time the West-German Zeiss plant located in Oberkochen wasn't ready to make lenses yet.

Comparing the relationship between the prewar Contax models and the Kiev cameras with the relationship between screw-mount Leicas and Japanese screw-mount Leica copies doesn't make sense. The Japanese didn't remove any of the Leitz plants altogether with their German technicians to reinstall them in Japan as war reparations.

http://www3.telus.net/public/rpnchbck/zconrfKiev.htm
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Mark Hansen
Old 11-25-2016   #12
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Mark Hansen

Mark Hansen has repaired a few cameras for me, but never a Contax. He does love Contaxes, though, so I's expect that he's a good bet.

http://zeissikonrolleirepair.homestead.com/index.html
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Old 11-26-2016   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu18 View Post
He sent a reasonable quote back, but thought I'd see if anyone had experience with him.Thanks again.
What price did he quote?
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Old 11-29-2016   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highway 61 View Post
Who knows what the Contax rangefinder line would have become if the Germans located in the Eastern part of their country, alongside with the Soviets, hadn't launched the Volga project (to become the Kiev line) in 1946-1947. Thanks to this, the Zeiss Ikon plant at Saalfeld (I came by this city last week) could go on with producing some "prewar" Contax models after the war and, moreover, the Carl Zeiss Jena plant could go on with producing Sonnars, many of them being afterwards fitted on the new West-German Contax IIa bodies in 1950, because at that time the West-German Zeiss plant located in Oberkochen wasn't ready to make lenses yet.

Comparing the relationship between the prewar Contax models and the Kiev cameras with the relationship between screw-mount Leicas and Japanese screw-mount Leica copies doesn't make sense. The Japanese didn't remove any of the Leitz plants altogether with their German technicians to reinstall them in Japan as war reparations.

http://www3.telus.net/public/rpnchbck/zconrfKiev.htm
No, but early Japanese screw-mount models for the most part are basically knockoffs with few discerning differences. It wasn't until many later developed models Like Canon L, P and 7 models that are superior to anything screw-mount that Leica made.

I have one of the early post-war East German 85mm f2 Sonnars with an obviously very little-used, so good condition aluminum bayonet mount that's definitely inferior to the quality of the mounts in my later Carl Zeiss 21 Biogon and 135mm f4 Sonnar.
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Old 11-29-2016   #15
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I had terrific experiences with Mark Hama on the small Yashica rangefinders and SLRs three and four years ago. He's quite capable and has Yashica parts that no one else has. I sent him one camera, a Contax SLR he could not fix, and he told me so right away.

He's old. He did disappear for a while a few years ago, and I'm guessing it was illness.

If you wrote him and he responded, I would trust him with just about any camera.
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Old 11-29-2016   #16
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Years ago he cla'd one of my Canonets. It was returned, after a couple months (quoted 2 weeks), with a non-working flash hotshoe. The rest was ok, so I didn't bother mentioning about the hotshoe and just left it as is since I didn't really use flash with it anway.
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Old 01-14-2017   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregm61 View Post
I don't even consider Kiev's when I think about Contax cameras, just like I don't consider Japanese screw-mount bodies when talking about screw mount Leicas.
Someone doesn't know their history. The "re-established" production lines were taken from Zeiss in E. Germany and transported to Kiev. The people who assembled the early Kiev camera were trained by the Zeiss employees. Some early Kiev cameras have pre-war Zeiss parts.

No, early Kiev rangefinders are not the same as the pre-war Contax, but they are substantially identical. I recently had a '51 Kiev II on a scale (body only), and it weighed the same -- to the gram -- as a '36 Contax II. People who have had them apart also say they are substantially identical.

I'm talking about the most early Kiev camera and not those that came later. I also realize that even the early Kievs were made to the same tolerance, and a difference in the lens to film plane distance. And, of course, no Kiev can match the historical significance of a pre-war Contax.
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Old 01-14-2017   #18
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Originally Posted by Gregm61 View Post
No, but early Japanese screw-mount models for the most part are basically knockoffs with few discerning differences. It wasn't until many later developed models Like Canon L, P and 7 models that are superior to anything screw-mount that Leica made.
Years ago I had a Canon IIIA

http://global.canon/en/c-museum/product/film14.html

This had a single eyepiece for viewfinder and rangefinder, and variable magnification. No screw Leica had these.
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