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Carburo
10-27-2004, 09:27
Hi.
Don't you think that FEDKA's prices are too high?

It seem that they sell only beautiful items, surfing their store is like masturbation for a soviet RF addicted :D , but some prices make me stagger...

Have you never bought something there?

(http://www.fedka.com/catalog/)

(it's just a sample: http://makeashorterlink.com/?J52A321A9)

GeneW
10-27-2004, 10:03
Fedka prices are certainly higher than eBay prices, and if you're willing to gamble on eBay, that's a cheaper route.

Yuri, however, stands by his sales and returns email quickly. His cameras are also shipped from New York, which can make a difference to some of us on this side of the pond.

I purchased my Zorki 4K from Yuri and the shutter jammed during the first half hour of trying it out (I was careful to always cock the shutter before setting shutter speeds so it wasn't accidental).

Yuri was very apologetic and sent me a different Zorki 4K as soon as the first one arrived back. It has been perfect.

I think his prices are somewhat high, but if you want a sure thing, it may be worth it. It was for me.

Gene

wlewisiii
10-27-2004, 11:05
Yep. I have an Iskra from him that is in excellent condition and should get, today or tomorrow a Kiev 4a with Jupiter 8m from him. I had actually ordered a cheaper 4AM from him, however when he tested it prior to boxing it up, he decided the shutter didn't sound right. So he offered me a 4a at the same price...

That's why I buy from Yuri and will do all my Soviet camera biz with him. His prices are higher than playing Ukranian roullette on ebay, but I'll get a camera that works from someone who cares about his customers. And he get's my custom as a result.

Hope this makes sense.

William

rover
10-27-2004, 11:11
It is good to hear that there is a reputable dealer of FSU cameras. The only reason I have not gone and bid for one is because it seems that everyone has trouble with them when they arrive at their new home. I have looked at Fedka and have been very tempted, if a Kiev is in my future, I will be willing to pay a little extra for the piece of mind.

Doug
10-27-2004, 13:44
There seem to be so many problems with FSU cameras that "customer service" takes on a special importance when buying. I'd rather deal with someone in NY than in the Ukraine or Bielorus. I think it's worth the extra cost to shop with Fedka, though I wish all the gear there had received a CLA. That's what's attractive about buying instead from Oleg or Certa6...

I bought a Kiev 4a from Yuri, and it didn't work, so I sent it back. He sent a replacement that also had problems, so I sent that back too. He finally hand-picked one, tested it with film, and sent that along with the negs and prints he'd shot! It's been fine as long as I leave it in the leather case, otherwise it suffers the odd light leak occasionally. Seems to be a crap-shoot.

pshinkaw
10-27-2004, 13:54
The problems are where the fun is! If you only pay $20.00 for camera and have to puzzle through all of these interesting issues, you are buying a lot of entertainment for only a sawbuck.

If you want to make photographs, you might want to have an alternative camera of your choice.

-Paul

Scarpia
10-27-2004, 14:17
If you want to make photographs, you might want to have an alternative camera of your choice.

-Paul [/B][/QUOTE]
Make photographs???------- Why spoil the fun?:D :D :D :D

peter_n
10-27-2004, 15:14
Right, the cameras are dodgy, but the lenses seem to be a bit better. They may need a CLA to get the congealed lubricant out of them when they get here, but the optics seem to be quite good to excellent.

The only thing I've bought from Fedka is a filter. It was great... ;)

back alley
10-27-2004, 15:38
it might be worth buying from someone that will offer a known product.
i bought my fed 2 off the ebay site and while it looks and feels great, it does not work. i got turned off fsu cams and have not bid on another.
crap shoot - luck of the draw, whatever!

joe

rover
10-27-2004, 16:28
Originally posted by pshinkaw
The problems are where the fun is! If you only pay $20.00 for camera and have to puzzle through all of these interesting issues, you are buying a lot of entertainment for only a sawbuck.

If you want to make photographs, you might want to have an alternative camera of your choice.

-Paul

That is one way of looking at it. I did buy a Holga for entertainment after all.

peter_n
10-27-2004, 18:37
crap shoot - luck of the draw, whatever!

This is apparently true of lenses, also. I've been trying to do a bit of research because I'm interested in a J-11 and a J-8 and there seems to be a school of thought that the lenses made in the late 50's and early 60's are statistically a bit more reliable than the rest. Still dodgy but less so, so to speak.

In particular with the J-8 the formulation was changed in 1957 and it is thought that the resulting lenses were an improvement on the original Sonnar. Then in 1963 or so the quality started to slip on the production lines and never regained the earlier level. So with the J-8 at least it seems that you stand a better chance with a lens from the 1958-1962 period.

John Robertson
10-27-2004, 20:34
I've used Camera Mate in Vienna, for those on this side of the pond, and found them reliable. Vitaliyi who runs it is helpful. The camera arrived from Ukraine, well packed and as advertised.

Roman
10-28-2004, 02:12
AS for CameraMate, I got my Iskra from them - since I live in Vienna, I arranged a meating - with a Ukrainian exchange student of economics, who had a dorm room full of Soviet cameras (a nice FT2 among them); he had two nice Iskras, I chose the smoother one. But I don't like that they are selling those Nazi-symbol-marred Leica copies over Ebay...
As for reliable sellers of SovCam gear on Ebay, 'alex-phot' (also known as 'asr-photo' and 'grizzly33bear' are really great to deal with.

ABarGrill
10-28-2004, 05:04
I've purchased many Russian cameras and, while the prices are wonderfully cheap, the rate of dud or misfunctioning cameras I get is pretty high. But that's part of the fun of dealing with sellers very far away for with not so much money on the line.

However, when I wanted a camera that I could trust, I bought myKiev 2 from Yuri and found myself willing to pay a higher price (but still very inexpensive compared to other rangefinder options). I paid it because I wanted to be sure I got a camera that works well and I think I have received good value from Fedka.

Alan

Stanton
10-28-2004, 09:16
Fedka's reputation is excellent. But having bought a large number of FSU cameras including two Kiev 4's, 5 FED 2s (in various colors) 2 Zorki 4K, a Photosniper, a Zorki 2, etc., and a set of lenses (35, 85, 135) both for the Kievs and in LTM, and a universal viewfinder, plus various miscellaneous items from a number of highly rated sellers on the auction site, there are reasonable alternatives. I had one camera be really defective - one of the Zorki 4K's - but I was really "bottom fishing" on that one and I probably deserved what I got. My experiences have generally been very good. I believe in buying non-mint items. My theory is that if an item has been used well and is said to be in good condition from a highly reputed seller, it probably is okay. The mint condition older items from FSU may well be ones which never were any good, given the quality control operations. They were placed on the shelf and left until they could be sold.

peter_n
10-28-2004, 10:19
Also I think you have to be careful of the use of the terms "mint" and "rare" for FSU stuff on eBay. Maybe they're a bit liberal with those adjectives in Russia and Ukraine... ;)

John Robertson
10-28-2004, 18:07
Originally posted by Roman
AS for CameraMate, I got my Iskra from them - since I live in Vienna, I arranged a meating - with a Ukrainian exchange student of economics, who had a dorm room full of Soviet cameras (a nice FT2 among them); he had two nice Iskras, I chose the smoother one. But I don't like that they are selling those Nazi-symbol-marred Leica copies over Ebay...
As for reliable sellers of SovCam gear on Ebay, 'alex-phot' (also known as 'asr-photo' and 'grizzly33bear' are really great to deal with.

Have to agree about the Nazi symbol cameras, in his defence he is not the only one selling them, and my distaste is more with the buyers of these!! If there was no market they would not be sold!!

fed_dude
11-01-2004, 21:50
If Fedka's prices seem high, that may only be a measure of how spoiled we are by ultra-low prices for cameras sold directly from Russia/Ukraine. By most standards and compared to U.S. incomes, Fedka's prices for cherry-picked nearly professional-grade cameras are very reasonable. Since Yuri lives in the U.S., he has every right to set prices high enough to make decent wages for what he does.

Carburo
11-01-2004, 23:46
Ok, now I'm persuaded about FEDKA's prices :)

But... due to my location (Northern Italy) I think it's a bit strange to buy a Soviet camera from USA.

So I'm thinking about
http://www.dvdtechcameras.com/
or someone else closer to me, supposing that they are as reliable as Yuri. Is it true for your experience?
What else you suggest, considering that I'm tired of Ebay's rulette?

Thanks.

Roman
11-02-2004, 08:57
Hi,
I once bought some adapter rings from dvdtech, and they were pretty fast in sending them...
Roman

doubs43
11-02-2004, 15:03
"The problems are where the fun is! If you only pay $20.00 for camera and have to puzzle through all of these interesting issues, you are buying a lot of entertainment for only a sawbuck."

Not only entertainment but knowledge as well! It's impossible to dive into one of these cameras and not learn something..... even if it's only that you shouldn't dive into them!! :D

Seriously, you can gain a real education and lots of useful experience fooling with a defective camera and the pride you feel when you get it back in running condition is worth every cuss word along the way.

PS - A "sawbuck" is a $10 bill (Roman numeral X) and a "fin" is a $5 bill (Roman numeral V). ;)

pshinkaw
11-02-2004, 15:13
I always thought it was a twenty. After all it takes two of them to cut a log.

-Paul

Doug
11-03-2004, 11:55
doubs43 is right; "sawbuck" is another word for sawhorse, with its characteristic X shape that resembles the roman numeral for 10, and the $10 bill is thus nicknamed sawbuck as well.

pshinkaw
11-03-2004, 12:16
OK then... It;s still a lot of entertainment for TWO (2) sawbucks. Sometimes two sawbucks and a Fin!

-Paul

StillKicking
04-27-2012, 08:48
I have bought several cameras and lens from Yuri and have always been happy with the products and the service he provides. He also CLA'ed a Kiev 4a of mine and that camera came back working like a charm.

agfa100
04-27-2012, 09:22
I bought a couple of items from Yuri and have always been happy. The first time I used him I had a Kiev that I got from e-bay where the back did not fit properly and had a light leak. I e-mailed Yuri and asked about a camera back and he told me he did not have any backs by themselves but he had a body he would sell me cheap. So I bought it and it was better then the one I was trying to fix up and still use it today.
wbill

fanshaw
04-27-2012, 09:28
It seems from what people on this forum have found that Fedka is highly rated for replacing non-working cameras. But, why don't the cameras work first time? I thought that his high prices were because they were serviced and checked before sale.

ChrisPlatt
04-27-2012, 14:47
It seems from what people on this forum have found that Fedka is highly rated for replacing non-working cameras.
But, why don't the cameras work first time? I thought that his high prices were because they were serviced and checked before sale.

Read closer.

I think most posts here state they're replacing non-working FSU cameras bought elsewhere with working copies from Fedka.

Chris

johnbay
04-27-2012, 15:57
Another strong recommendation for Yuri at Fedka. I purchased two nice Fed2's, a J-8 and Industar-22, all clean and performing flawlessly. I think his prices are fair for the level of quality.

Johnbay

davidtan
04-27-2012, 16:29
Does Yuri provide a tracking number? I made an order yesterday morning. I'd figure he would have shipped it by now.

pakeha
04-27-2012, 16:54
Read closer.

I think most posts here state they're replacing non-working FSU cameras bought elsewhere with working copies from Fedka.

Chris

nope.

To the OP. Moscowphoto[ Alex] is also very good. Believe me there is so much conjecture on these threads that it is worthless trying to make a decision based on the experience of a few who will be more likely to post negative experiences from eastern europe. See, i have brought from US sellors and got burned.I have purchased US made goods that were junk[try to an get an american car to corner fast. safety.:D]I have brought from Russian/Ukraine and had no problems.Go with your own instinct and look for multiple purchases over time from buyers in the feedback.Or, even better, buy from the UK were often these items were owned by carefull eccentric types.
Good luck and remember that the postal service may hold things up for you:)

Kekoekoo
04-28-2012, 10:06
Have you thought about okvintagecameras?? I've always read good things about him and a couple of months ago I decided to buy a FED 2 from him...Took a few weeks to arrive (I live in southern Spain and it came from northern Russia so...) but I received a totally functional camera, butter smooth controls and calibrated rangefinder. His website is kind of scary but dealing with him has been a pleasure...