Here's a picture of a nice, and probably quite rare, 1949 Kiev that I finally got around to repairing. I was given this some years ago by the late Stuart Willis of Brisbane.
I got it home, and then promptly disassembled it to replace the broken tapes. Needless to say, I was probably too enthusiastic taking it apart, and it ended up somewhat more disassembled than the task required.
Anyway, it is now back in working condition and can join my other cameras in the cabinet.
Very nice early Kiev. Got the same problem Curt has only it's not confined to FSU caneras. Contax shutters are scary, got a Contax III in pieces waiting for me to get up the nerve to replace the broken shutter ribbons. Nothing like a smooth working Contax/Kiev as a user and I think they look better than the same period Leica.
The best advice I can give after learning the hard way, is to only dismantle as far as necessary if you want to replace the tapes, and if you do need to remove the shutter crate, put a piece of tape over the end of the loose shaft holding the top shutter drum. Otherwise it'll fall out, and you'll lose the correct timing of the shutter and retard mechanism. Regards, Chris
Some of the Kievs from the late '40s included genuine Contax parts "liberated" by the Russians at the end of the war. The Soviets actually crated up a lot of the Contax camera plant gear and started shipping it north but a lot of it got sidetracked along the way and was eventually shipped back to Germany. But some of the early Kievs were nearly comparable to Contax in quality. There also was a "No Name" Kiev in the early 1950s that didn't have any name on the front plate and was allegedly of exceptional quality. They supposedly were made to export. I have never seen one but it makes sense as there were some Zorkis from that period made for export that were a lot nicer than the standard models. I have a few of those.
I would JUST love that 1949 ! Mine are just 1951 CLA in Ukraine and 1952 in great working condition . I also have a dual script 1955 II and damn near mint / cased 1956 KIev IIa . Pride of place , however , is my worthless parts Contax / Kiev shutter rebuild .
There is much evidence that most Kievs up to around 1955 , were of EQUAL quality to a Contax II/III - established by techs who have worked on both .
My Contax III with early Kiev 4 meter has been lost in Ukraine for two years , hence my losing interest a bit - the agent claimed personal problems etc , so my Rat Contax II / KNeB IV ex-Kiev IIIa / 4 and Contax IV never arrived . That's £150 each . He has been back in Contact since I have seen him mention the silver/tan Rat on Facebook and e-mailed rather than comment on his page .
Dee's ruptively Gender indee'terminate . Autistic Glitch - cameras help contain and focus an out of phase world . Contax / Kiev surround and ground me in chaos . I may even take a photo or two with my several Digi-boxes . OOPs I stated Female , which was weird . I am actually XY , but my head does not recognise that 'frequency' so forgive me if I don't change it . Love puns - Miss-aligned etc LOL
Apart from the possible German bodyparts, the number of the lens is equally interesting. These 1949 lenses are assumed to have Jena glass inside. In my collection there is a 1950 lens, a 1949 vintage is one my dreams! Hans.