...they keep dribbling in...

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Well, I had things kind of organized for a while, but I can see this isn't going to last long. I keep slowly acquiring cameras in no particular pattern.
Some day I'll organize these (maybe):

This mint Minolta SRT-101 was given to me by a coworker; it belonged to his father, who obviously took very good care of it.

This Kodak Retina Reflex III was also given to me by a friend. It's not quite in working order, but all it needs is a cleaning to make the shutter a bit snappier.

Despite their different film formats, the Instamatic Reflex and the Retina Reflex share the same lens mount. This Instamatic Reflex came to me as a companion to the Retina above. It has suffered some battery-leak damage, and is unlikely to ever be repaired (particularly since the film has been discontinued).

This is a beautiful 16mm Magazine Cine Kodak from about 1936. In addition to its interchangeable f/1.9 lens, it features slow motion (16-64 fps) and a 6:1 zoom viewfinder built into the folding handle to accommodate telephoto lenses. I bought it for $5 at a local second-hand shop.

My third Argus C3 (at the moment), this one came with the Argus flash holder, an auxiliary telephoto lens and a GE light meter, along with the cases and instruction manuals... another gift from a coworker (they think I run a Camera Pound here).

I really just NEEDED another East German SLR, so I picked up this Praktisix (right) to go with the Pentacon Six that I already had. You can find out more about its weird lens if you're curious by poking around in the Tech Notes section.

At the Cincinnati camera show on 1-25-03 I picked up this nice Retina IIa for $25. Shutter and viewfinder needed a bit of cleaning, but the lens is like new and the leather cleaned up nicely.

From the same dealer, for another $25, I got this near-new Ciro-Flex in its worn case. It would have been a good deal anyway, but this has the Tessar-type f/3.2 Raptar lens in a professional-grade Rapax shutter!

This Argus C-4 was only $5. The shutter is jammed, but that's why I wanted it: I've never rebuilt a C4-series Argus shutter, and I didn't want to tear apart a good one just for the experience. It included a hot-shoe-mount Argus Flash Unit in box, with original 1951 batteries....

Heading for the door, I came across this Pentax H1a at a table where I was looking at Zorkis. It was only $30 (less than the Zorkis) and in perfect working order; I couldn't think of a reason why I needed it, but without a good argument to the contrary I got it anyway.

Then I had to leave, as my hands were pretty full and I couldn't carry any more (besides, I had no money left)...

I picked this Gerlach Trixette up in a Lexington antique market for $5. The interesting thing about it is the front standard, which is cast in one piece with the upper struts and swings down as it folds, and the bellows, which sort of folds like a paper bag as the lens swings down. I guess they're uncommon too, the few I've seen listed are asking much more than $5.

The Retina Reflex wasn't enough... now I've gone and got a Voigtlander Bessamatic. This wasn't intended as an exercise in masochism (though it could pass for one): this is the final entry in my effort to obtain a copy of every camera that my father owned. Unlike the one he bought brand new in the early 1960s, though, this one works properly. (I've managed to get the Retina working nicely too....)

Okay, just this one more, then I'll get all these organized in some sort of order. Really. I promise. Geez, it's a lot of work though..... Anyway, I don't usually have 2 cameras that are very close models in my collection, and I already had a pretty nice Pen FT, but this Pen F was so pretty.... there's not a chip in the black paint anywhere... and the shutter was jammed when I got it, so it was pretty affordable....

Okay, I lied again. I've been looking for a Canon FTb for a long time but I refuse to pay a fair price. Finally found this pretty-good body for $29....

The Kodak Duo 620 of the late 1930s was very slim, more pocketable than a Super Ikonta and had a very nice, deceptively small f/3.5 Kodak Anastigmat lens. Its only real vice was that it took 620, rather than more common 120 film......

This remarkably handsome camera is a Pentacon FM (known in the eastern bloc as a Contax FM), the last in the line of the Contax S, one of the world's great landmark 35mm SLR cameras. The FM was made from about 1957 to 1961; its improvements over the 1949 original included a quieter shutter, automatic diaphragm control, a split image rangefinder in a brighter focusing screen, and nicely proportioned and comfortable larger wind and rewind knobs.

Funny thing: the more desperately this section needs to be cleaned up, the less fun it seems like it's going to be to do it. Anyway, this is a Type 3 Exakta VXIIa the prettiest of all Exaktas; made within a few miles and at almost exactly the same time as the Pentacon FM just above it. Surely this was a high water mark for the East German camera industry, in quality if not prosperity. The lens on it is a very odd West German Kilfitt 90/3.5 that's much more interesting to look at than it is to use.

This lovely Ikonta B (521/16) belonged to the father of a good friend and colleague. It's the top of the line, with Tessar in Compur shutter, dating from 1938.

What's so special about this Kodak Tourist 620 folder? Look closely at the shutter speeds engraved above the lens: the top speed is 1/800 second, this being the Synchro-rapid 800 shutter with double-ended shutter blades. Yes, it works perfectly.

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