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Kiev III


Produced: 1948-1958
Name: „„Киев“
Producer: Arsenal
Frame size: 24x36.
Lens: Jupiter-8  2/50.
Shutter: 1/2s, 1/5s, 1/10s, 1/25s, 1/50s, 1/125s, 1/250s, 1/500s, 1/1250s + B.

Quantity: ±120.000 units [1].


Camera opposite from Ilya Stolyar (USA) collection. 


Kiev III  #50148.






It was officially announced, that Kiev III camera entered into the market in 1952. Despite this fact, very few early examples can be found with 1948, 1949, 1950 and 1951 markings. These cameras still have german-origin parts and comes with ZK (1948), ZK-Zorki (1949-1950) or early Jupiter-8 (1951) lens. DIN markings on exposure calculator, "F" character ahead of aperture settings (see picture below).



Kiev III  #50148.



Althoug starting from 1951 almost all Kiev III cameras were marked with "A" character in serial number (or "B" in Cyrillic character  in 1954) this early camera still has 3 digit serial number, DIN engravings and extremely smooth shutter as on genuine Contax'es.



Kiev III  #52113.



Typical camera from the first year of mass-production. "A" prefix on the serial number already, DIN engravings and great shape indeed. The particular camera comes in complete set with box and manual guide.



Kiev-3  #A525578.



Although this common Kiev III is announced to be assembled from domestic parts completely, DIN settings prove us it's not so for sure. That mean, that 1954 issued cameras still used spare Contax parts indeed.



Kiev III  #A540204.



As it was mentioned above already, some Kiev III cameras from 1954 have strange serial number with "Б" (russian "B") Cyrillic character, instead of usual "A". Although camera collectors had some tries to clearify the reasons of these markings, it still stays unclear for me. New "GOST" engravings on the exposure calculator, instead of early "DIN" one.



Kiev III  # Б 542598.



Starting from 1955 new Kiev III generation with export nameplate markings was released by Arsenal. "GOST" markings on the exposure calculator (see picture below), no more "F" character ahead of aperture settings.



Kiev III  #5517383.