Zorki 3M

Just won the auction on this from a U.S. seller. The “cosmetics,” as they say, is less than pristine. The serial numbers say this was made in 1955.  There’s quite a bit of pitting on the chrome, especially where it gets a lot of use like the rewind knob. Quite a bit of the paint off the shutter speed knob is worn away, but the numbers are engraved and I’m working on repainting the numbers.

Fedka has a history on the 3M on its Web site, and the specs are posted on RangefinderForum.com.

The winder is pretty smooth, although not as smooth as on my Zorki 1 and Fed 2 I had CLAd. The rewind know is also loose enough that if I turn the camera over, it slip up. The rangefinder had to be adjusted, but now works fine and is reasonably bright. Love the 1.1 image. This is a camera with a nice heft, the controls where you would expect them to be with a nice feel to the shutter release. It’s slightly wider and quite a bit taller than the Zorki 1, and wouldn’t fit in a pocket even with a collapsible lens like the I-22.

The camera was body only, but I had a Jupiter 8 that I now have mounted. I’m still running tests on my first roll to see what shape the shutter and curtains ares in. By ear, the shutter seems to be firing about right. Hope to have photos to post next week.

Update Jan. 23, 2010

Got the test roll back. The good news is that the slow speeds are pretty near on. The bad news is a couple of pinholes, I think,  in the shutter curtains. Every frame has a couple of very thing light streaks across the bottom half of the picture. Looks like this little number is off to Oleg for the full treatment. Even with a CLA and new shutter curtains, I come out ahead of the going price for a 3M, so I’m pretty happy. The only pain is the wait.

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