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Komsomolets, Komsomolets-2
Sputnik, Sputnik-2
2006. Sovietcams.
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The Soviet Union had just triumphed in the Great Patriotic War and was licking its wounds. Rebuilding and revitalisation was nowhere more necessary than in Leningrad after 900 days of hardship under German siege.

To kickstart the rebuild, the Soviet Union dismantled various German optical factories and shipped them eastward. One of the factories to receive German tooling and expertise was GOMZ, who consequently reappeared in 1946 with their first new camera, the Komsomolets.

It's not clear to what extent the factory made use of German labour and capital, but to introduce a consumer camera that soon after the war implies either external help or a great priority status within the USSR, either one being possible.

Komsomolets itself was the fairly straight copy of the non-focusing Voigtländer Brilliant, although the design was simplified and altered somewhat (for instance, the filter door doesn't hinge like in the original). Gradually or not, in 1949 the Lubitel saw the light. It's best seen as a mature Komsomolets: it added focusing capability by means of an interlink between the viewing and taking lenses, its ZT-5 shutter had a larger range of shutter speeds than the Komsomolets (B, 1/10s-1/200s), its viewing lens was a speedy 60mm f/2.8, and its taking lens a T-22 75mm f/4.5, both faster and more wideangular than on the Komsomolets ...

(source: http://cameras.alfredklomp.com/lubitel2/)


Sample of Lubitel-2 camera from Sovietskoe Foto magazine.