An evaluation copy of Voigtlander Brillant (1938). It is made of bakelite. The viewing and taking lens are coupled outside the body through gears and there is a focusing spot in the middle of the viewfinder, so it is a real TLR.
Cyrillic writing on the badge has created numerous variants from the text. Uoqumelo is one of them. Actually it is Lubitel 2, which freely translates "amateur" in English.
All German patents was nullified by the allies and camera manufacturers all over the world begun producing more or less exact copies of various German products. Lubitel cameras are one good example. In the beginning GOMZ (the manufacturer) made some simplifications and afterward "copies" were more advanced than the original model. Russians had an advantage, because they had an opportunity to get the original machinery and know how from occupied areas. Everything was not destroyed.
Last Lubitel version , Lubitel 166 Universal is made of plastic, instead of bakelite.
Komsomolets model B. The first of the line was model A. A film counter makes the difference. After this the name was changed to Lubitel.
An excellent story about Lubitel 2 on Alfred Klomp's page: ACP
Intersting postings on the Lubitel amd its predecessors. As has been said, it was copied from the Voigtländer Brillant (please note, as Reiska correctly wrote, there is no second 'i' in Brillant, at least not in German though in some UK adverts the word was spelled Brilliant with a second i).
I have read in one or two places on the internet, in various forums as I recall, that the Russians took the machinery for making the Lubitel, or Komsomolet, from Germany. I don't think this can be correct as the Russians never had control of Braunschweig, where the the Brillant was made. They didn't get that far west.
As Reiska pointed out, German patents were made public property after the war. But strictly speaking this was only for the victorious Allied countries, which included Russia. In other countries, and inside Germany itself, pre-war German patents were still valid until they expired. Not that this mattered a lot to the the Soviet Union, which was never noted for strict regard of patent law.
The Russians undoubtedly had access to the patent drawings for the Brillant, but whether or not there were copies of the manufacturing drawings in eastern Germany I don't know. I would tend to doubt it unless, possibly, Voigtländer contracted out to a company in the eastern part of Germany for the moulded Bakelite bodies, but I have no information on this one way or the other.
I'm inclined to think the Russians worked from patent drawings plus handling and measuring actual cameras. They didn't do too badly at this with their FED Leica clones before and during the war.
The position was slightly different with the Super Ikonta and Moskva. Super Ikontas were made in the ex-Contessa Nettel factory in Stuttgart, once again well inside western Germany, though once again I've read, quite wrongly, that the Russians took the manufacturing machines for this.
But copies of detailed manufacturing drawings were held at Zeiss Ikon headquarters in Dresden. This was too badly damaged by bombing to continue making cameras, but nearly all the machine tools and jigs for Zeiss Ikon cameras were made by Zeiss Ikon's machine tool factory which was outside the main city of Dresden, and wasn't very badly damaged. It was still very much inside eastern Germany, and may well have had other copies of the manufacturing drawings. So though the Russians didn't get the actual machines they probably got the manufacturing drawings and the tooling for the Super Ikonta, which was the next best thing.
Post by John Parry on May 30, 2008 19:05:57 GMT -5
Interesting article on the Lubitel 2. I have one, although there is a chip on the filter case, and there are no filters inside. The serial number on the main lens front would make it a 1978 model.
No plans to actually use it, as it's a devil to focus, although it's a conversation piece on the shelf. Of course, I should probably sell it on e-bay, as it has the LOMO insignia, which the kids all seem to be mad on. What's that all about? I get crazy pictures with vignetting all the time!