Coming from Ebay, a Zorki from about 1954, (no serial number as yet), with a 50mm F3.5 Industar collapsible lens, said to be in good condition. It has no serial number visible on the top plate, Zorki moved the serial number to the back rim about 1953. Age can be determined if old or new serial number arrangement. The lens is from a FED, it does not have the Zorki trade marks.
Coming from a UK seller, with a leather case that requires a new strap. The shutter etc., is quoted by the seller as in full working order. The Industar 50mm F3.5 lens features a genuine Leica lens cap!!
I have a couple of cameras worth of spares in case any are needed, and will have to trust the lens is indeed in good order, but it can take any other Russian standard lens or any Leica or 39mm mount lens. Hopefully it should al work fine, the Zorki at the period of the mid fifties was better assembled than the FED equivalent body.
Last Edit: Jul 27, 2014 11:28:35 GMT -5 by Stephen
The Seller has a 100% Ebay record, and was selling other camera items in similar condition today. I well know there are a couple of odd sellers in the UK, but this one looks OK, apart from having a FED lens on a Zorki body.
However the Zorki was never properly imported in the early 1950's, and any example in the UK could have any vintage Russian lens, as spares were near impossible, till TOE(uk) were the importers, replacements were much more likely.
Also I have serviced several Feds and Zorkis over the years, and I have spares for main parts from junked cameras. The shutter has few problems that can't be sorted very easily.
The main worry is the lens, they are prone to damage, and seem to attract bad cleaning practices. However I have another FED that needs a new collapsable lens, and I have risked purchasing another Zorki trademark Industar 22 tonight on Ebay to go on the Zorki camera. This is a later 1970 model, with Red export quality mark.
Looks to be excellent cosmetic appearance, and it will be very thoroughly tested out once here, as the business seller claims good performance. £31......not too bad against £90 or more from Russian sellers. It may not be contemporary year with the 1953/4 camera, but if it works well who cares?
My first one, purchased second hand from a Swedish pawnshop in 1958, but in new condition, was the other way round - Indistar on a FED body.
Russian seamen used to pawn them regularly in order to get Swedish currency.
Lots came in to the Port of London, and Tilbury, usually sold by the Pursar of Passenger ships, as they took a percentage of the sale, which kept the ships KGB agents off the seamans back. It was illegal under Russian law for the Seamen to have even Roubles, they were paid in special paper currency, and that had to be left in the hands of the purser.
Cargo ships were different, the crew risked selling direct to gain Sterling currency, one or two photographic shops in London specialised in buying the Russian gear, and were well known to the UK Custom and Excise Treasury Officers, as all camera imported by any means, even S/hand, owed import tax.
Secondhand cameras for sale in a photographic shop had to have the signed paperwork that tax had been paid with them, or the cameras could be seized till all tax had been settled. Pawn shops tended to steer clear of such photographic purchases, as their money lending licence could be taken away for flouting the Custom and Excise duty collection.
Last Edit: Jul 27, 2014 19:08:03 GMT -5 by Stephen
Stephen, If the watermark is from the seller, I have had major problems with this guy he gets completely hysterical if you have any complaint. His postal charges are unrealistic and he has a major rant about ebay on his 'about me' page. Avoid.
He's been contacting everyone about the negative feedback they've left (including me)and one by one they are disappearing so if he has 100% it's not 100% true. He bought a FED I was selling just to leave me neg feedback. The only thing he'd ever bought before, other than dog food and health supplements, was my camera.
Having said that I bought a similar lens from him and its fine. He just sent the lens 2nd class post and charged £6.95. For that price I expected courier. He completely went off on one when I queried it.
his neg feedback page: ALL CAPS ARE HIS this is how he communicates. He lies in his feedback too. Mine is gone now and so are others, but there are plenty of newer negs. Now where's that fish...?
Fits the profile for a late Zorki 1D which would have placed it in 1954. If you remove the baseplate and look at the innards you will see the long, flat Leica type spring has been replaced with a short spring that takes a lot less space. This makes the shutter sound a little different --crisper than the 1B and 1Cs. Some claim the spring change is actually an improvement over the Leica. Some of the early 1Ds lack the painted metal strip around the lens mount. The last Zorki1 model was the E which can be identified by a more modern shutter speed progression. Actually there are quite a few variations of all the Soviet camera models because when they made changes there often were still some parts in the bins from the previous models and since virtually all Zorki 1 and FED 1 parts interchanged they would use the older parts in what was technically a revised model. In addition you have the problem in recent years of Ebay sellers taking parts from various broken FEDs and Zorkis and combining the good parts into "Zorfedenstein" cameras. I got fooled a couple of times early in my FSU camera collecting career by such composites. Ive got a box full of Zorki 1 and FED 1 parts. Even managed to get my hands on some new shutter curtain. Ten years ago I could replace the curtains in about an hour. It probably would take me several days now to relearn the process.
Last Edit: Jul 27, 2014 21:08:45 GMT -5 by Deleted
This is a later 1970 model, with Red export quality mark.
The Zorki looks very nice, it is a handsome camera, and a capable shooter.
May be a silly comment, but is the red quality mark the sign for coated lenses? A have understood later lenses did not get this quality mark, or "red P", as all lenses are coated after a certain year.
Phil: I am almost shocked about how a 100% seller on ebay can continue as he does. I this more common than one are aware of, or is this seller an exception to the rule? Someone should have taken this seller or matter to ebay administration, it must be a violation of how ebay (or other auction sites) should work.
I have reported this Sebastian guy and even got online help, they know his history but wouldn't comment. I had my account suspended because I refused to send him the camera he ordered. I'd given him a full refund plus a bit extra immediately after he paid for the camera. He was determined to leave neg feedback and put me to great inconvenience, but you can do that anytime after a purchase. I asked him to leave neg feedback without all the hassle of going through sending the camera etc, which had known faults (which I had pointed out in the listing, and used as my 'excuse' for refunding immediately). His 6 neg feedback (as it was then) were far more damaging than my one - especially if you read the comments RAVING AND RANTING IN CAPS. He's had a lot more negs since I dealt with him, add to this all the other 5 or so he's had reversed/removed. Not great. I spent 3 days constantly messaging him back and forth. trying to ignore him but he went on like a man possessed by demons.
If you think I am exaggerating I can provide screenies and copies of all correspondence.
I always check neg history, 99% of the time it is newbies with very low feedback and bad ebay etiquette and people complaining about postal delays. I have no problem with these companies as the feedback is usually not to do with the actual company or its products.
oh if I had not agreed to revising my feedback there were hidden threats and the possibility my account would be suspended. Nice guy.
I found the fish, now where is his address...
Oh, I definitely believe you on this! And you learned me (and others) something valuable about auctions. I have seen a lot of sellers describing all aspects of the auction, only a single line of the item - strange. They may be business sellers not knowing the items they sell, also they are very anxious for negative feedback. Not a good combination. This came some off topic?
On the Zorki camera the seller is not connected to the Zorki lens sale. I will wait to check on the lens when it arrives.
I always check the ratings, but you cannot trust any completely. I do not sell on eBay, so no risk to my rating,and I budget to be able to right off the less expensive purchases if there are likely to be unsolvable issues.
The mark is indeed about coating, but was also a mark indicating export quality, and the Russians claimed better performance.
The quality can only come from actual testing with film.
On the camera, no problem, I can restore the mechanics myself, there are spare blinds, and two cameras in parts as spares to work with.
The spring on the bottom is always worth tweaking for the correct pressure, too little and the return of the release is unreliable but soft, to much pressure and the camera is too loud and sharp, with increased shutter pressure.
Zorki and most Soviet copies are niosier the Leica, only the Reid is quieter, with most Japanese about the same noise.
Anyway getting in some fresh film for the holiday period, and testing out the Russian items collected over the last few months.
The 100% rating refers to the Zorki camera and lens, not the later bought Industar lens on it"s own.
I noted the 99.1% seller rating and I had read the relavent feed back, the worst referred to very expensive purchases, and with these there is always a risk of the buyer wanting a lowered price, which the seller claims is behind the cases involved.
I trust no recent bad feed back are cases that Phil has had bad experiences with. Comments here are not personal, just generalised.
EBay are odd to deal with, at times, but threats to a buyer from a seller are not allowed, and as long as the usual trust of an auction is abided with on both sides, EBay tend to support the buyer. A friend regularly sells items of high value and is plagued by sellers demanding partial refunds for so called description problems.
As a seller he minimises the description to help reduce issues, but often the very first contact after the sale is a demand for a reduction, including the post.
Many EBay users would not last seconds in a real auction, and have no concept of a "final sale", in a proper UK auction there are no returns, except for criminal deception.
Buyer beware is the norm, and I am very experienced with auctions, mainly furtinture and art. I have bought hundreds of items in real auctions, and you have to pay for your mistakes come what may!
The issue of the post charge is complex as well, it involves a charge for packing, and in practical terms the time and expenses involved in taking the item to the Post Office, plus the actual postal charge, EBay charge, taxes etc.
In my experience as a buyer, most Postal charges are reasonable, they cover the genuine cost of delivery.
What muddies the waters are the Post free offers from China etc, the existance of which implies the other sellers are pocketing all the charge.
But if it is post free the charge is in the item price, there are no free lunches!
It happens that the Zorki Camera is coming post free this time, and the lens for £6.99, which I consider a normal level these days.
Life is too short to worry to much about EBay problems, sounds complacent but it is not entirely so, I will go for the throat if crossed in a sale by deception, after all the buyer is protected on ebay, allowing a quick effective way of getting out of the sale, when deception is involved.
What is a problem is over expectation by the buyer, and gripes arising on minor problems, this raises alarm bells with sellers, who worry about scammers wanting to lower the sale price, after the hammer has gone down.
No such worry in a real action, but I bet 99% of buyers have never attended or bid on an auction, except on TV with Lovejoy!
Again, nothing here is implied to be personal to any member of the forum, l hope the lens seller is not a member!
Last Edit: Jul 28, 2014 11:23:06 GMT -5 by Stephen
On the camera, as Wayne mentioned the bottom spring, the Russians fiddled around with it quite a bit, introducing covers to protect it in later models with the Leica style mechanics.
Leica used a steel spring at first, but later used beryllium copper, a type of phosphor bronze spring on some models. The spring steel versions were also slightly tapered in thickness to give a better feel to the release.
I have come across Soviet cameras with the tapered steel springs, but I think they have been changed from the standard flat plate steel spring. By a serviceman or the owner.
The Zorki C I recently bought, and found to be extensively modified, has a bronze spring, and tapered as well. Whoever did the work in Russia knew what they were doing, it is quieter than the IIIg or Reid.
I deeply suspect it was the personal camera of a staff member at Zorki, the mods are old work from the date added to the shutter crate. All bearings are bronze or ball races, and the races are marked Russian.
Even the shafts are ground hardened steel, dead straight etc. So a Russian buider who had higher standards than the factory.
It,s a pity the Zorki C had no lens with it, that might have been special as well.
Last Edit: Jul 28, 2014 11:24:01 GMT -5 by Stephen
I sell a fair bit on Ebay and find very honest, detailed and accurate descriptions avoid all problems and result in higher prices. As well as auctions, I sell new cookware at fixed prices and so come under the distance selling regulations and have, by law, to offer a 14 day cooling off period after delivery with a full refund on purchase price and postage - so far, no one has taken me up on their statutory right.
When I buy on Ebay, I avoid items with vague descriptions on the basis that the seller probably knows something he doesn't want to admit to. Same with out of focus photographs. I add the postage to the price as that is what I am going to pay - if the seller wants charge £15 for postage, that comes of my max bid! No point in getting upset about it.