This is the 1963 version (serial number 6307264) of the "No Name" Kiev-Contax with the original lens Carl Zeiss (west) Sonnar 50/1,5 n°1887552.
That first batch of no name kievs are engraved "made in ussr occupied germany"
and the lenses (the camera seems to have been sold with either the 1,5 or 2 sonnar) are genuine western Zeiss Stuttgart lenses.
Since Zeiss Ikon stopped production of his contax IIa and IIIa in 1961, it seems that there were some lenses left over... and that a deal was made involving Zeiss Ikon Stuttgart, Arsenal, and may be Carl Zeiss Jena in order to "germanize" the camera to sell for the american market. (other deals are known between the two branches of Zeiss during the cold war).
The 64 version doesn't have the special german engraving and seems to have been sold with a jupiter 8 as standard lens.
Those cameras are normal kiev-4a but seems to have been through a very rigorous quality control process (may be in Germany to validate the engraving ?) as they are known to be of specially high quality.
Three questions remain open :
- were those cameras ever sold outside the USA ?
- who organised the deal ?
--- the american importer ?
--- Arsenal (to bring some valuta in) ?
--- Zeiss (to get rid of those stock lenses) ?
- are the serials specific or included in the normal 1963/1964 production numbers ?
Known serial numbers:
#body ____ #lens/type __________________ owner/source ________ remarks
6306054 __ 1727543 Sonnar 2/50mm ______ ebay ______________ without engraving (Canadian seller)
6306071 __ 1727182 Sonnar 2/50mm ______ ebay ______________ with engraving (US seller)
6306104 __ 1451151 Sonnar 2/50mm ______ US seller ___________ with engraving (US seller)
6307264 __ 1887552 CZJ Sonnar 50/1,5 ____ private _____________ see photos
6307370 __ 1726570 Sonnar 2/50mm _______ ebay ______________ without engraving (Ukrainian seller)
6307457 __ 1449224 CZ Sonnar 50/2 added __ Jacques collection ____ with engraving (US seller)
6307625 __ 1890933 Sonnar 2/50mm _______ US seller ___________ with engraving (US seller)
6307679 __ 1170766 Zeiss Sonnar 50/1,5 ____ uwitte collection______ without engraving "made in ussr occupied germany"