Originally Posted by David Hughes
I've often thought that it would be nice to have a black FED-1 but they never seem to think refurbishing etc is worthwhile...
You could always have an original one, David!
I'm sure most of us are very familiar with Fed 1 ser. #389 but here it is anyway just for fun;
With the original Fed cameras it seems that there was a problem in developing a hard-wearing black lacquer finish. As Oscar Fricke notes in his work on the Dzerzhinsky commune / Fed origins;
"Apparently the commune had difficulty finding a suitable finish for the camera's exposed metal parts. In a letter to Gorky in June 1934, Makarenko wrote, 'Incidentally, the "Leicas" ("FED" or "Fedka" as we call them) which our new factory now produces are not bad. Only the secret of the lacquer still eludes us."..."
Considering how popular the black-repaint Kiev 4 variants are with the buying public it IS quite strange that no-one has given the same strip'n'dip treatment to the Fed / Zorki cameras without afterwards feeling the inevitable urge to adorn the camera with all the ubiquitous Nazi paraphernalia.