Zorki
A Short Histoy

 

Zorki in the beginning was a FED a FED Model G. The Zorki 1 was sold as a FED Zorki about 1947 - 48. Like the FED cameras the Zorki also start as a copy of the German Leica. FED and Zorki did not agree on how a camera should look and be sold, a little capitalism comes to Russia.

Zorki I like any camera evolved through several versions. The Zorki like the FED I were made with one shutter speed dial atop the camera unlike the Leica. Leica having two dials slow speeds on the front of body, not put in the early models of Russian Zorki I. The other dial put atop the camera and copied in all the Russian cameras. Early models used "Z" German to mean ZU open, later models would change to "B" bulb Western Standard. Shutter speeds were Z 1/20, 1/30, 1/40, 1/50, 1/100, 1/200 and 1/500 of a sec. the slow speeds were omitted. The camera came with out any flash connection and film was changed like the Leica through the bottom plate.

The Zorki I has 7 Models. Models A, B,C, D, E, F, G,

 
Zorki 2 like any camera evolved through several versions. The Zorki 2 is a Zorki I upgrade. With all the features of the Zorki I plus a self-timer. Again the Zorki 2 was made with one shutter speed dial atop the camera unlike the Leica. Leica having two dials, slow speeds on the front of body not put in the early models of Russian and the other put atop the camera and copied in all the Russian cameras. Early models used "Z" German to mean ZU open later models would change to "B" bulb. Shutter speeds were Z 1/20, 1/30, 1/40, 1/50, 1/100, 1/200 and 1/500 of a sec. the slow speeds were omitted. The camera came with out any flash connection and film was changed like the Leica through the bottom plate.
Zorki C; 2C we see the first real change in the Zorki in this model viewfinder housing becomes larger and looks less like a Leica than that of the Zorki I., Zorki 2. After the change in the viewfinder the next modern improvement is a PC connection for flash synchronization. Shutter speed started to change Z was drop and B added speed were now B, 1/25, 1/50, 1/100, 1/250 and1/500 of a sec.
Looking at a C or a 2C we see the same camera except that the 2C has a built in self-timer. Even as these cameras were being sold they had a shortcoming. The eyepiece for focusing was still that of the old Leica diopter controlled but hard to view and focus through but change was coming. The film was changed like the Leica through the bottom plate. Millisec. ajustment for flash bulbs of 0~1/25 of a sec.

Although most electronic flash units will synchronize with a focal Plain Curtin at about ~1/40 and below not until the next generation put or mention this in manual or on the camera.

Zorki 3 some say it is not a beautiful I think all cameras are. The viewfinder was again modified to install the new larger rangefinder and viewing window. This version put the slow speed dial on the front of just like the Leica IIIf and looks some what like the f model it was copied from. In the high-speed range it adds 1/1000 of a sec. Even with the addition this version dropped the self-timer. A note the Zorki 3 was based on the Zorki I and the body is just a little larger it. It was placed on the market at the same time as the Zorki 2 and hasn't a PC connection. This doesn't take away from its beauty and it was as close as you can get to current Leica of the time with out a large investment.

Zorki 3M same as the Zorki 3 except that the slow shutter speeds are now on one dail

 

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