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Discussion in 'Classic Models & Marques' started by likaleica, Dec 23, 2007.

  1. nspur

    nspur Well-Known Member


    Thanks for that. I had a look in his eBay shop and was quite tempted but now I won't bother.
  2. smokeybars

    smokeybars New Member

    With regard to Sebsandiego not only does he supply fake cameras but also buys cameras on ebay which he has no intention of paying the price he has bid, His method is to be winning bidder, then identify a fault (usually mould on lens or in body, internal/external damage) demand a reduction in price then log complaint with ebay paypal. My advice would be to block him as a bidder before you get caught out. Would be interested to hear if anyone else has had a similar experience...... looking at the feedback forum it seems we are not alone
  3. Brian

    Brian Venerable Elder

    This camera could be of interest even if of no great value I have several Kiev cameras in my collection that started off as Contax to some extent but never the other way round. I just cannot understand why anyone would do it, certainly not to an early Kiev, as Nick suggests they are getting quite desirable, and the cost of converting would hardly be financially worthwhile Again as Nick suggests the whole early history of the Kiev is so muddled that it has kept me for one tearing their hair out in frustration.

    What model Kiev do the "Experts" agree on? You say the original engraving has been rolled out but still legible, what style is it. Did it come with a lens? If it did what was it?

    You mention the Kiev film counter being different to the Contax, , no, early Kievs were made out of the original parts bins, at some time or other every combination was used. This and the history of post war Arsenal production is the fascination of collecting the marque.

    As a collector it might be of interest to me as a curio, dependant on model and condition.


    If you look at this site, select forums, go to collectors open forum ( top of list) then select second page, title something like Off topic Kontax ( Sic)Arsenal you might find it of interest. ( Sorry I don't know how to post a link to the actual thread )

    Just looked at OP history and seems like I have wasted my time. :(

  4. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    I think the biggest problem is that these Russian cameras only have value to collectors, who are mostly located in wealthy nations. I have a few Polish friends that tell me these cameras are worthless and think it is a bit strange anybody want to use anything Russian. so I imagine in Russia they are just thrown out with the Rubbish. That is unless some web savvy individual intercepts them and sells them on ebay. The state of most cameras sold on ebay that originated in Eastern Europe tend to be really poor. However there are always exceptions.
  5. Staropramen

    Staropramen Well-Known Member

    The original post was in <u>2007</u>. Sebsandiego is now trading on eBay as Collecting-photo-gear, and at camera fairs as Rock Cameras ("Rocky"). "Rocky" is apparently still buying on eBay using the Sebsandiego ID which has a 100% feedback rating. Collecting-photo-gear feedback rating is 99.9%.

    Sebsandiego's "hallmark" images - manipulated slightly, which may obscure any blemishes - are unchanged, but now there are often many more photos per item. Items sold on Rocky's camera fair stand still often look in poor shape.
  6. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    I think Brian spotted the date, hence the edit. Still, his pretty much unparalleled knowledge of Kievs was pretty useful to finish the thread off.

    I find it hard to believe that that idiot Rocky could actually get this advanced...
  7. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    I have not myself dealt with this dealers/ebay seller but have had big time problems with Eastern European sellers. I get the impression that a load of these sellers have arrangements with local refuse collectors to get hold of their stock. A bit like you could over here up until the late 1990's. The local dump guys used to sort through the refuse and make some money on the side. Not so easy now with EU regulations and changing attitudes. However car boot sales are still a great source of cheap quality kit destined for landfill. :D
  8. Brian

    Brian Venerable Elder

    I think all your post does is highlight your lack of knowledge or experience of this market.

    In some 250 Kiev related purchases both private and E bay from The Russian Federation and The Ukraine I have only twice been disappointed. And as with most things collectable the market is now swinging the other way. I indeed have been approached by people from the East to enquire if I wish to sell any of my Kiev collection. And as some past and present members of this forum will concur I do not collect" Rubbish" from landfills.

    I started buying when Ebay usually hasd 20/30 pages of Kievs for sale, I have just looked and currently hardly a dozen cameras. And nothing worth buying.

    Mentioned in my previous post. The correct ERC for the " No Name"

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    Moderators Note: PLEASE don't post pictures larger than 600 pixels
  9. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    You have been very lucky then as it well documented on ebay forums and elsewhere on the net about the honesty and reliability of Russian/Eastern European sellers. I have bought a similar number of cameras on ebay and would say about 50% of those purchased were not as described and some complete wrecks - but then to be fair they were very cheap purchases. Also like you I have had some good experiences and have similar boxed examples, including loads of Kneb's.

    Like many I expect bad experiences with former Soviet Union sellers but was surprised that my worst experiences have been with a US seller and a charity organization in the UK - in case of forum censorship I will not mention any names. However the saga was diabolical maybe worth a website :)

    AP Magazine article "Look A Leica" by Chris Catcum 5th April 2003 is an eye opener on the state of Russian cameras albeit Leica fakes. Ivor Matanle has also in AP Magazine touched on the subject of the trails and tribulations of buying on ebay, which matches my experiences. :)


    Kneb Beer /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif
  10. Brian

    Brian Venerable Elder

    So, the advice must be to build up a good relationship. Perhaps I have been lucky, on the other hand I may have been astute.

    I must say it surprises me that after so many bad experiences you report that you have continued buying. I think I should have given up rather sooner

    I have found in this world you usually get what you pay for.

    I can't comment re the two people you mention, not heard of either.

    Funnily enough I have twice bought from America............both a complete disaster.
  11. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    At the time you could buy four/five cameras from the former Soviet Union's sphere of influence and still get them cheaper than a single camera here. So in the end it was the better option. I sold a lot of the failures on ebay and being more honest with the descriptions I actually managed to make a small profit. Auction fever gets the better of a few people especially when the postage/shipping is cheap.

    I think in reality ebay cameras are more a lottery than you get what you pay for. A lot of people that are not savvy with cameras have no idea what they are worth or how to market them. This to some extent applies to ebay with dark images and poor descriptions. I once bought a Leica II with a rare Hektor lens for peanuts because the seller described a normal Leica quirk as a fault.

    As I stated before Ivor Matanle classic camera articles touched on ebay a few times explaining very similar problems. The AP Magazine article "Look A Leica" by Chris Catcum 5th April 2003 where they tested three cameras. All had serious faults. On one the film actually jammed in the camera. Another had shutter tapering and the other light leaks in shutter curtains. I believe they were sourced from a company based in Vienna who also sells on ebay. It is on my list of must avoid at all cost :)
  12. Staropramen

    Staropramen Well-Known Member

    Kievs & Fake Contaxes

    Really we should have a new thread on Kievs/Contaxes . . . .

    My friend Rob works in Kiev for much of the year and has many stories about his photographic experiences and the opportunities to make a "fast buck" there, as well as many horror tales.

    He has rather mixed opinions about the Kiev photo industry. Of course, Kievs were only a minor product, and the factory employed thousands of workers, many of whom are trying to make a living in a very different world. As nobody wants their armament-making skills, many technicians have turned to making (fabricating) things that they can sell at a nice mark-up. I gather that there are folk who are very competent repairers and restorers, and the reputation of most of the old-time professionals is generally quite good, but you need to "know your man". On the other hand, you can get anything you want from the 'genuine' gold-plated Contax/Leica owned by Goering, at a 'reasonable price', through to a pile of poop priced at a few Hryvnia/Dollars/Pounds per kilo.

    So it sounds to me like you have to know your product and your supplier pretty well so as not to buy a pile of junk. Based on these anecdotes, facts and opinions I am not greatly inclined to get involved with Contaxes or Kievs, it sounds rather risky for the 'layman'.

    You can see a photo of one of Rob's ex-Arsenal experts working on his Orion 15, taken last year here.
  13. Malcolm_Stewart

    Malcolm_Stewart Well-Known Member

    Not at all, Brian.

    My interest in Zorkis and Kievs is quite recent with a few lenses, 2 Kiev 4As and 2 Zorki 4Ks (plus the dedicated Zorki 4K microscope camera kit in timber cabinet) in my collection; so I have everything to learn, and this thread has been quite fascinating.

    I've even looked back at the ebay feedback for the seller around the time of the original post. It does seem to me that our original poster/buyer was very unlucky - if one can believe ebay's archives.

    I doubt if I'll ever fall into the same trap as my interests are in the Russian sourced items rather than dabbling with pre WWII Contax items.
  14. Brian

    Brian Venerable Elder

    Sorry you can't. I own the only genuine example. :cool:

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    So there............... /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

    Malcolm you sound like somebody I could get on with. Nick was very complimentary earlier in this thread re my knowledge of Kiev cameras, but I still have a lot to learn. I know a few things about Leica, collected, researched, written about and used for about 50 years but they are easy to research and well documented. Whereas the early post war Arsenal production is shrouded in mystery, difficult yes, but fascinating.

    Well they either were or were not. The only specialist shop I know of in Vienna is The Leicashop. I have bought two F Rolleiflexes and a 111G Leica, all described as new.............very, very expensive but perfect. Both Rollieflexes have been featured on this forum, I don't make things up or report heresay just for the sake of it.
  15. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    If you read the article it was cameramate, which in the period we are talking was dealing on ebay. I do not really want to name individuals which was my choice. If you read a few classic camera articles in AP magazine you will see this is not "heresay just for the sake of it" :)
  16. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    I had one very similar to that I purchased for £70 in Potabello Road Market. Mine was chrome without the paint on the lens but still looked impressive. I sold it on and now regret it :)
  17. Staropramen

    Staropramen Well-Known Member

    Kiev & fake Contax, etc

    Nope, not convinced . . . it's not bling-y enough for R.M. Goering: there's a degree of understatement about it that Herman the German wouldn't have liked. Though I suppose it might have looked good against his later white fancy-dress uniform . . . .

    Apart from that, does it take photographs?

    The Leicashop have always been straight in all my dealings, mostly with Franz Gibiser who I understand now has his own shop just down the street. Cameramate always struck me as very borderline and they seemed only to have traded via eBay which no doubt gave them some 'protection' from the rather firm Austrian consumer protection legislation that applies to businesses selling on-line or face-to-face.

    Incidentally I recall that Austria implemented Distance Selling Regulations and other e-commerce regulations quite early on (starting around 2000), and pretty much 'to the letter'. Other countries, like the UK, are still pussy-footing around making online businesses conform fully to EU and UK e-commerce and consumer protection regulations. Of course, most of the trading done on eBay is outside such regulations - and in reality mebbe always will be.
  18. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    Re: Kiev & fake Contax, etc

    Ebay is strange place as auction fever takes over. You list something at 50p or 99p to reflect its condition. Say it is in good working condition with a few marks etc... Expecting to get a few pounds and the thing takes off! You never mentioned it was excellent and you was just disposing of equipment you did not want to throw away. Next thing you know the buyer is hopping mad :(

    I suppose you cannot protect people from their own stupidity ? Regulations would never work with cameras and other items as it is all very subjective :)
  19. Brian

    Brian Venerable Elder

    Re: Kiev & fake Contax, etc

    Well put it this way, everything seems to work.

    And as for authenticity, I am loathe to mention idividuals other then to say the address was somewhere in Nigeria and as far as I know it's never been mentioned in The Amateur Photographer magazine. However the last time I bought that it had a rather nice Wallace Heaton advertisement on the front cover and a price indicating 1/6p, so I might have missed it.

    Cameramate, never heard of them. I think the guy at The Leica Shop was Peter something..........Coln?

    Going back to Kamepa's post. As I understand, from your previous, you bought rubbish, paid rubbish then sold it as rubbish and still made a profit? Blimey, reminds me I need to do some re-glazing in my green house.
  20. Kamepa

    Kamepa Well-Known Member

    Re: Kiev & fake Contax, etc

    You like putting words into other peoples mouths. There is a long divide between throwing something away and it still not being usable photographic kit. :)

    Returning sort of to the original post. I have only had one Kiev wreck/rubbish, a Kiev 4 manufactured in the late 1970's. It arrived dead and was in a real state! Have you a Kiev 5 in your collection? I bought a fully working example in reasonible condition for less than £30 on ebay some years ago :)

    I have three early boxed Kiev's and a few other examples up to a late 4am. The one I use a lot is this Kiev-IIIa.



    I have put three films through it so far this year. I see it as a beautiful camera, maybe not in great cosmetic condition as it only cost £16. I must have put twenty films through it since I bought it so it is real camera and not just a collectible.. Some people might see this camera as rubbish based on price :)

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