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What was your first RF?
Old 02-18-2006   #1
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What was your first RF?

Mine was the Olympus 35SP. It was also the first used camera I bought, and the first camera I bought on *bay. From a Russian ex-colonel in the Yukon.

That was followed by a succession of compact fixed-lens RF's, then a Zorki. On to a barnack, then a Bessa-R, to Hexar and Leica M. Picked up a P along the way.

Some are gone, some I still have. The Oly is still here, and has found a (courtesy of Gman) brown leather-covered mate.


What's your story?
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Old 02-18-2006   #2
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the first camera i bought with my own money was a rangefinder. i still have it and, like you, g'man has customized another so it has company.
it started me on the path of photography and has taken some very nice shots along the way.
i bought it around 1971 as best as i can remember.

the camera?
an olympus 35rc.

joe
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Old 02-18-2006   #3
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Mine was the Leitz Minolta CL, 1978.
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Old 02-18-2006   #4
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The Hi-Matic 9, bought with earnings from a Summer of mowing lawns in 1969. I still have it, works great.
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Old 02-18-2006   #5
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Minolta Hi-Matic F still around here somewhere.
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Old 02-18-2006   #6
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Fujica V2, purchased new from an Air Force BX, Mactan Air Base, Philippines, for $42.50. That was the Summer of 1967. It was a fine camera that took great pictures.

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Old 02-18-2006   #7
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My first camera was an Ikonta A that my father passed down to me, technically not a rangefinder but close enough. The first camera that I bought was a Ricoh 500G.
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Old 02-18-2006   #8
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Flush with a bonus from settling a case, I got an M3. 1997. Used it 2 weeks and thought what on earth is the hullabaloo about this rangefinder thingy? Gave it back to the store. Though that person back then was me, only 9 years ago, I now have no idea who that guy was. Now, life without rangefinders....impossible.
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Old 02-18-2006   #9
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mine was a GSN that I bought about a year ago.. it started the snowball that led to a Kiev 4a, Vivitar 35es, Canonet, Minox, Contax IIa, Contax T, Leica M3.. and culminating with a couple Holgas
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Old 02-18-2006   #10
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Mine was a Retina IIa that my dad passed down to me. He bought it new back in the day and I have many memories of him taking pictures with it. He had the film advance mechanism replaced about 25 years ago and I had it done again 15 years later. I still have it and it really needs to have its rangefinder cleaned

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Old 02-18-2006   #11
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My first one was a silver Voigtlander Vitomatic 11, though I used some of my mother's rangefinders before that.
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Old 02-18-2006   #12
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Although I've had cameras for 40 years, the first "rangefinder" I had was a FED 2D I bought 2 or 3 years ago. Then a FED 2E and a Zorki 6. Although I liked the FSUs, I never could get either one to work properly for any length of time. I sold them all and bought a Canonet QL17 GIII. It works quite well. I've been thinking about a Bessa R, but that'll have to wait until after I get a scanner.
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Old 02-18-2006   #13
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Mine was an M4-MOT that I bought to resell quickly before I got addicted as first camera.
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Old 02-18-2006   #14
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A Minolta HiMatic 7 purchased in 1965. Here's a photo I took with it in the same year, on Tri-X film.



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Old 02-18-2006   #15
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A nonmetered Kiev. I found it in a German camera shop in 1988 because it seemed so, well, Perestroika. I saw that it took interchangeable lenses, and the store owner explained that it took old Contax lenses as well as old Nikon rangefinder lenses. I was shooting Nikon SLRs for a newspaper at the time, and the little camera intrigued me. So I bought it for, if memory serves correct, about $60, and quickly found myself immersed in the strange and archaic world of Nikon-mount rangefinders.
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Old 02-18-2006   #16
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Howdy from Wyoming;
My first RF camera was a Kodak Retina IIa that I purchased with proceeds from my newspaper route in 1959. This was followed by a Kodak Signet 40 about a year later, and a very trashed Leica IIIc w/summar about 1961. The Signet worked the best and actually had a good lens.
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Old 02-18-2006   #17
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My mother's Agfa Karat IV. Apparently, it had been sitting in our basement in a box for seventeen years and I just never noticed, and no one told me. I guess everyone forgot it was there. After she died, my father was going through some old things, and found it. Good thing he realized I might want it...

...look what it's started!
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Old 02-18-2006   #18
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Contax II, bought while on vacation in New Zealand, 1983.
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Old 02-18-2006   #19
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1st RF was a Fed 5 3 years ago, and life has never been the same since.
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Old 02-18-2006   #20
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My first was a Mamiya Super Deluxe so many years ago. I sold it a few years later and have been kicking myself for doing that ever since.

My last one is also a Mamiya SD, same exact model, sitting right on the desk in front of me now. It was made from a mostly working one and a banged up one. I'm putting off tearing it apart to fix a hesitation on the 3 lowest shutter speeds.
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Old 02-18-2006   #21
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Canon QL17 GIII. Bought it a couple months ago
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Old 02-18-2006   #22
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First REAL rangefinder (meaning a manual focus, coupled viewfinder) was my R3A a little while ago - which I promptly sold when I discovered that for that kind of $$$$ I could almost buy the Bronica. Then the Bronica RF645 came along, then a Yashica Electro 35 GS and the Konica C35.

When I was a little kid, I had an AF fuji "rangefinder." Point 'n' shoot, but a big heavy plastic thing.
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Old 02-18-2006   #23
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My first rangefinder was a Leica IIIa purchased used in 1952. I still use it. See it in my avatar.
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Old 02-18-2006   #24
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My new Zeiss Ikon. A little birthday present to myself after the hurricane and whatnot. After nearly twenty years with an AE-1 and that retched EOS system, I kept finding myself being annoyed by,(and occasionally confronted because of), mirror slap..
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Old 02-18-2006   #25
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a contax IIa from a flea mkt. with a 50/1.5 manuals and filters/hood. I came here for advice and have hung around since.

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Old 02-18-2006   #26
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Todd, was the IIa and Sonnar a steal at the flea market? I would think most people there would think it was a quaint old camera with mostly nostalgic appeal
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Old 02-18-2006   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AsahiPentax
Canon QL17 GIII. Bought it a couple months ago
welcome to RFF, Sean.. you picked a great RF to start.. I seem to get more keepers with my Canonet than with any other camera.. maybe I should wise up and start using it more
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Old 02-18-2006   #28
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My grandfather's Argus C-3 wasthe first RF I used and I still have it. The first camera(not an RF) I bought for my self was a Kodak Instamatic--can't recall which one but it had aperture setting and shutter speed choices(814 maybe?).
Rob
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Old 02-18-2006   #29
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Minolta Hi-Matic 7s.

It was my father's camera. It was my first film camera - after a while, I figured I needed a "real" camera so i bought a Nikon SLR and a stack of lenses.

Nowadays, I'm in love with the 7s again (and don't you make fun of it's size -- NO it doesn't take 120 rollfilm!).
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Old 02-18-2006   #30
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My first RF was a Leica M3 w/ 50mm Summicron (Rigid) + well-used (n)everready case. Picked it up around July 4th-ish in 2005. Beautiful camera, great condition, solidified my love of RF photography. Sold my digital SLR about a week later.
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Old 02-18-2006   #31
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I came in photography six months ago with a Pentax MX and bought my first RF four months ago: it was a soviet Zorki 4K. At first, I just wanted to know the difference between SLR and RF .
I immediately loved the way we shoot with a RF. Then, I discovered RFF and was really impressed by the works you guys make ... since those days, I bought a Zorki 4, Zorki 3m, Kiev 4am, and finally (for the moment) a Leica III. I mostly use my LIII, though my other cameras are really good, primarily because it's so small that nobody takes notice of it ... besides, as you know, small is beautiful! Now, I have to practise a lot, and one day I shall have a Leica MP

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Old 02-18-2006   #32
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My first true RF camera was a 10-year-old Leica M2 in 1967 that I still use. Earlier, ignoring the Brownie box 127, my first camera was a Regula with scale focus, then a Petri Half-7 (both long gone), and following the Leica there was an Olympus Pen D2 now also gone. The next true RF was the Olympus 35RC in 1972, then the Minolta CLE in 1982 both of which I also still use, and that was the status for the next 20 years or so. Now I'm swamped in RF cams thanks to GAS attacks brought on by hanging out in this den of gear nuts!
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Old 02-18-2006   #33
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My first RF was the Voigtlander Bessa L in 2002. The first 'real' RF was the Voigtlander Bessa T 101 in 2002! That was the camera that started my RF craze!
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Old 02-19-2006   #34
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I bought my first RF one year ago, it was a Fed-3 type B. Wonderful camera
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Old 02-19-2006   #35
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Oly 35RC. My dad gave it to me when I was 13. Still works like a dream!
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Old 02-19-2006   #36
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My first rangefinder was a Leica IIIc I traded a Nikon F for in 1972. My first camera was a Yashica 44 TLR which used 126 film. I got it for Christmas in 1965.
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Old 02-19-2006   #37
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Canonet 28 bought for $40 with shipping from someone who has done CLAs. I really, really don't want to let go of that thing.
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Old 02-19-2006   #38
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In the late 1970s my father had a Yashica RF, I don't know what model. When we showed an interest in photography he decided to get "better" cameras for my brother and I and bought 2 Minolta SRTs that I still have and use. Dad gave the Yashica to my uncle. I can't figure out what model Yashica it was, my still uncle has it, but hasn't gotten around to digging it out of a closet in his house. It was not an Electro, but had a great lens. I see it as having very clean lines and my father couldn't pick it out off the Yashica Guy's web site.
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Old 02-19-2006   #39
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I was infected here 1 year ago. The first one was a Bessa R from Cameraquest (april 2005).
Now I also have an Iskra and this one wont be my last rangefinder. Now my Nikon SRL is used by my bother and the digicam I bought before knowing RRF is like new (it was 700 € 2 years ago, It shoul be an M2 )
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Old 02-19-2006   #40
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Konica S2 in 1972 while I was at University
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