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Sport

 

 

 

Sport "Gelveta"

 

 

 

 
  

Designer and creator A.O.Gelgar. The camera's name is a diminutive of it's creator's, but at present no camera with that engraving has been discovered.

The Gelveta, later the Sport, it's a "monument" on more than one level. While surrounded by mystery for a long while, the Sport, in its mass produced versions, was also considered the Exakta's rival for the title of "World's first 35mm reflex camera". We now know, that series production of the Sport occured after Ihagee had begun. However, the camera illustrating the article in the January, 1935 issue of SOFO is, beyound a shadow of a doubt, a prototype or pre-series camera. It is the Gelveta. An elegant design appears on the lens cap. It seems to bear the name "Gelveta". The general specifications are those of the future Sport, and without wanting to appear more Cartesian than I really am (this is a French speciality) the camera illustrating an article in the January, 1935 issue of a magazine must date from 1934 (see Sov.Foto #7, October, 1934). And if its development required as many months as its production, the camera was perhaps already under development in 1933 by Gelgar at VOOMP, in parallel with the Leica copies. Unusual in its shape as well as in the technical solutions employed, derrived probably from the MIN, the Gelveta is among the most desirable  cameras an iconomechanophile could hope for (source: "The Authentic Guide to Russian and Soviet Cameras" by J.L.Princelle, 2nd edition, 2004).

  
 

Produced: 1934-1935
Name: „Спорт“
Producer: GOMZ
Frame size: 24x36 mm.
Lens: Industar-10  3.5/50.
Shutter: 1/25s, 1/50s, 1/100s, 1/200s, 1/500s + B.

Quantity: ± 300 units.

 
 

 PK0620 - Gelveta from private collection.

 

  
 
 

 

 

 
  

PK0605. Prototype version, under name Gelveta on the lens cup. As it was said already, announced at Sovietskoe Foto No.1 in 1935.

35mm reflex camera 24x38mm or 24x36mm according to the model perforated 35mm cine film, but in rolls with paper backing, with red window for frame counter of 50 images. One-way film transport from feed spool to take-up spool, with no possibility of rewinding.

Black lacquered metal camera body covered in black leather. The reflex housing element comprises a single block incorporating the waist lever finder and focusing magnifier. Galilean viewfinder incorporated in this "finder block". Strap lugs also located on its top plate. The camera back comes completely off, like the Krauss Eka. Shutter incorparating sliding metal plates. The first "curtain" is vertical, sliding up to hide behind the viewfinder, explaining its massive appearance. The second, lodged beneath the oversized (27x42mm) mirror, follows a vertical curve to join up with the other one. On the viewfinder block is also the horizontal knob serving for shutter speed setting, and combined shutter and film advance knob  (source: "The Authentic Guide to Russian and Soviet Cameras" by J.L.Princelle, 2nd edition, 2004).

 
 

 PK0605 - Gelveta prototype camera.

 

  

PK0607. Prototype version without name markings on the frontplate yet. An original design of the shutter plate as well as Industar-10 3.5/50 mm lens itself (see picture below). Only "GOMZ" logotype on the frontplate, strap lugs painted in black. Never happened to see this camera alive.

 



Picture opposite from LOMO (Russia) archives.

 

PK0607 - Gelveta prototype camera.

 

  

PK0608. Never seen before prototype version without name markings on the frontplate. The frontplate is covered in green-gray leather, no strap lugs on body. Bigger finder's window. Changed design of the shutter plate already. Regular Industar-10 3.5/50 mm lens. The authentity of the camera opposite is not confirmed yet, but it seems to be an early GOMZ project indeed.

 

Camera opposite from private collection in Russia.

 

PK0608 - Gelveta prototype camera.

 

  

PK0610. Seems to be an early version of "regular" Gelveta. "Sport" and "GOMZ" engravings on the frontplate. The shutter/lens holding plate is absolutely plain, with 4 fixing screws visible on it (see picture opposite). The red window for frame counter of 50 images on the rear plate (see picture below).
 

 

Camera opposite from Alexey Nikitin (Russia) collection.

 
 

 PK0610 - Gelveta #135 (on the lens).

 

  

PK0615. Camera identical to PK0610, but with regular shutter release knob already ( see picture below).


Camera opposite from Salbiy Pseunok (Russia) collection.

 
 

 PK0615 - Gelveta camera.

 

  

PK0620. Camera identical to PK0615, but with riffled shutter/lens holding plate already (see picture below). Aperture numbers from f/3.5 to f/16 already (f/22 on the earliest ones).


 


Camera opposite from private collection in China.

 
 

 PK0620 - Gelveta camera.

 

  

PK0625. Seems to be the latest version of an early Sport (Gelveta). The shutter/lens holding plate is plain again, with 4 fixing screws visible on it. But the most important feature is changed rear door without red window for frame counter already (see picture below). Direct transition to "classic" Sport camera. 

 


Camera opposite from private collection in Russia.

 

PK0625 - Gelveta camera.

 

  
  
 
 
  
  

 

 

 

Sport "Classic" 

 

 

 

 

The first serial numbers of this type of camera started around 320. The highest serial numbers around 19,000. Mass produced model of the GELVETA. The technical characteristics are identical but in redesigned body: the Sport is more rounded and the form improved. The back of the camera is like the CONTAX. The camera back opening catch was inspired also by Zeiss. The system of changing film was by 35mm automatic film cassette designed especially for the SPORT. A fully loaded film cassette gave 50 exposures 24x36. The front of the viewfinder was engraved with the GOMZ sign and the glass finder was coloured yellow/orange. The viewfinder strap pins replaced by a decorative rectangular ring surrounding the eye-piece. The top-plate held first by 6 screws and then by 2. The lens 'unit' remains unchanged. In spite of the bayonet, no other focals other than the f3.5/50mm. Lens black type "Contax" [2].

  
 

Produced: 1935-1941
Name: „Спорт“
Producer: GOMZ
Frame size: 24x36 mm.
Lens: Industar-10  3.5/50.
Shutter: 1/25s, 1/50s, 1/100s, 1/200s, 1/500s + B.

Quantity: ± 20.000 units.

 
 

 PK0650 - Sport #15818.

 

  
 
 

 

 

 
  

PK0630. In 1935, the inventor/engineers Rybnikov and Postnikov participate in developing the new version of the Gelveta-Sport. The first examples of this evolutionary model start around #320 and the highest number reporter is around #19.000. General technical characteristics are identical, but the injection-molded body is redesigned. The Sport ir rounder, and the shapes are more refined. The back is removed as on the Zeiss Ikon Contaflex. The back opening key lug is also inspired by Zeiss. Film transit is from feed to take-up cartridge; these are especially designed for the Sport. Capacity of 35mm film is adequate for 50 views 24x36mm. The viewfinder window is now surrounded by a decorative rectangular molding, in lieu of the strap lugs which are now gone (source: "The Authentic Guide to Russian and Soviet Cameras" by J.L.Princelle, 2nd edition, 2004).

Seems to be an earliest version of the regular Sport camera. The top plate is held by 6 screws, another 6 screws on the frontplate (see picture opposite). Unusual "white" frontplate with "Sport" markings on it. Camera opposite from private collection in Europe.

 
 

 PK0630 - Sport camera.

 

  

PK0633. Totally black version of an early Sport camera. The frontplate screws are already hidden under the black leather.  The top plate is held by 6 screws. Very big shutter speeds markings, enagraved on the shutter advance knob (see picture below).

 


 
 

 PK0633 - Sport  #1185.

 

  
  

PK0635. Easier to find in comparison with PK0630 and PK0633. Totally black body. The frontplate screws are already hidden under the black leather.  The top plate is held by 6 screws. An old style brown leather case with 2 screws on the front (see picture below). Camera opposite from Ilya Stolyar (USA) coll.

 


 
 

 PK0635 - Sport #2240.

 

  

PK0640. Camera identical to PK0633, but fitted with very uncommon technical (?) lens (see picture below).



 

Camera opposite from Ilya Stolyar (USA) collection.

 
 

 PK0640 - Sport camera.

 

  

PK0645. Seems to be  a very uncommon transitional version of the particular camera. Although the sample opposite comes with 2 screws already, the top-plate was intended for 6 screws initially. The unused holes are hidden very nicely ... (see picture below).

Slightly redesigned Industar-10 3.5/50mm lens, without markings "GOMZ" already. Still old style of brown leather case. 


 

 
 

 PK0645 - Sport #3623.

 

  

PK0650. The latest productional version of the Sport camera. The top-plate is held by 2 screws already. The particular camera comes with new type leather case (see picture below). Changed design of I-10 lens with upturned Gomz logotype now.

 

PK0650 - Sport  #15818.

 

  

PK0655. Less common to find variation of PK0650 camera. Camera identical to PK0650, but with serial number, engraved on the shutter's cage. Need to mention, that all previous Sport cameras come without serial number itself, only on lenses (which are interchangeable unfortunately...).








Camera image courtesy - Yuriy Komarov (Russia).

 

PK0655 - Sport camera.

 

 

 

 
 

 

 
 

Sport-1 

 

 

 

 
  

PK0670. Very nice and unique camera under name "Sport-1". An additional VOOMP and GOMZ markings on the frontplate (see picture opposite). Shutter speeds up to 1/300s (1/500s on regular Sport). New design of the Industar-10 lens with 2-digits serial number. 


 


Camera opposite from Alexander Kneller (Germany) collection.

 
 

 PK0670 - Sport-1 camera.

 

  

PK0675.  Camera almost identical to PK0670, but under regular name "Sport" again. New sequence of the shutter speeds: 1/300s, instead of regular 1/500s (see picture below). New design of the Industar-10 lens with 2-digits serial number. Few additional screws on the side-plates. The same rare as Sport-1 is.


 

 

 PK0675 - Sport  #37.