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 FED 1d T.S.V.V.S F93- "No Name", fake or not?

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Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 12 2016 : 09:50:08 AM
(On the RFF-site I published this question first. Some gentle people referred to this site... Therefore .. there we go again:)

Hello. My name is Ad. I am new on this forum. And first of all: my apologies for my somewhat poor English. My subject is a FED camera.
This summer I went on vacation in Germany. Being a collector of (rangefinder) cameras I bought in the neighbourhood of Dresden three cameras in a small, dark "antique"/junk-store: a Kiev (3A) and two Leica copies, Russian, according to the seller. One copy with a (CZJ - Tessar, nr. 3617223) lens, the other without a lens. I saw that one of the Leica-copies was chromed. All 3 together: € 50. Three weeks later, at home again, I discovered some strange things on the two Leica-copies: no inscriptions for example, and a square mounting plate behind the lens. I'm no "connaisseur" of Leica cameras or Leica-copies. So I contacted "TomTiger" Piel (https://tomtiger.home.xs4all.nl/fakes.html ).
He assumed these two cameras were Feds with a Contax-mount (T.S.V.V.S F93- "No Name", from the "Princelle" Catalogue). (Very?) Rare. But he also wrote that these types were often counterfeited! (The camera looks exactly like the PH1005 on the website: http://www.sovietcams.com/index.php?1556498228, except the lens of course.)
So, before I will spend some money for a CLA and/or a repair, I want to know if these 2 old cameras are original FED's TSVVS F93-No Name or fakes ...........
I hope this forumsite can give me more information.
My question to you is: Can anyone tell me how I can see whether these cameras are original "No Name" FEDs or counterfeited?
Also I'll have to detect if the cameras are well functioning. Therefore I have to read a manual of the FED 1d first. If a repair is necessary (and when it is unmistakable that the copies are original), I would be interested in CLA costs and persons who are capable to do a CLA. (Assuming it is too difficult to do it yourself, follow the link, for example, to J.Javier: http://jay.fedka.com/index_files/Page466.htm). Later I will be interested in the strange history of this hybrid camera. But first of all I'll have to wait for answers at my first question: original or not.
I have made some pictures. Please let me know which are relevant.
In advance, thanks for your answers and responses, any help will be appreciated.
Kind regards,

*) P.S. I saw that that there are 4 very minor differences between both oldies: on the chromed version are 2 inscriptions of small arrows: one (curved) nearby the button/switch of the reversing lever, the other (straight) nearby the filmcounter; otherwise on the other version is on the bottom a small black button mounted (looks like a flash contact...). And last: the 6 screws on de upperplate (3 front, 3 back) are not exactly placed on the same spots.
50   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Mosasaurus Posted - Oct 19 2021 : 07:43:43 AM
After some years I write again. My healthy condition is not so well, so I am selling my camera collection on Marktplaats.nl (not so easy).
The TSVVS/FED-camera's however, I will post them here.
Here on this Forum are the real "connaisseurs"...
So if you are interested, please let me know.
e-mail: cwm.van.hout@hccnet.nl

nightphoto Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 11:45:08 AM
Hello Ad,
This camera No. 577 used to be in my collection. I sold it to the seller who is offering it now. It is 100% authentic and in great condition too. Nice to see it again. Happy Holidays to you all!

Regards, Bill

Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 08:18:06 AM
Hello, a little bit off topic: TSVVS #577 http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/FED-TSVVS-Russian-Camera-577-with-Sonnar-2-50-mm-Lens-/282264688521?hash=item41b8495789:g:y28AAOSwcUBYVdos
Jacques M. Posted - Dec 20 2016 : 12:01:11 PM

Thanks, Ilya.
By its number, this Tessar belongs to a series with Exakta mount, delivered the 13/07/48, by the Thiele. OK for the date. But not really understandable for the mount...

And it seems that the regular engravings on the upper plate don't exist on Ilya's camera: no arrow towards the counter frame (just a point), idem for the arrow and the "B" under the rewind lever... just like one of Ad's cameras.

Our enquiry is not finished...

PS: Aidas cannot help us.
ilyast Posted - Dec 20 2016 : 09:21:58 AM


Jacques M. Posted - Dec 20 2016 : 04:37:31 AM
I think too, Juhani.

What a strange mount for your Tessar, Ilya! Where does it come from? Could you tell the s/n of the lens? The release spring seems a bit special, with its three screws. Well, so, a "no name" more! Finally, they are not so rare! Always no internal number?

Thanks! Jacques.
cedricfan Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 10:54:41 PM
Fake would be easy to make perfect with better tools than back then. And in a fake something this visible would not be left this raw.

Best regards,
ilyast Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 6:27:19 PM



Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 4:17:58 PM
Hello Jacques,
The viewfinders. The chromed first.



Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 4:05:00 PM
Hello Jacques,
No, you are not wrong. The rectangle viewfinder is vertical not well centered. Something lower. And that makes the difference! (On the internet I can't see any TSVVS which has a "lower" viewfinder. So this is OR interesting (and need research) OR a clue that they are fakes...?
Anyway, they look somewhat clumsy...
Jacques M. Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 10:39:54 AM

No, Ad, it's a question of position: the rectangle does not seem well centered: probably too low.
To compare with the windows on my two TSVVS which seem correctly centered:

http://www.ussrphoto.com/UserContent/19122016_TSVVS 005.jpg

That said, I may be wrong: it's perhaps the photo...

Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 10:08:35 AM
Hello Jacques,
About the place of the 2 screws: I noticed that. (And mentioned it in my "P.S." of my first post.
The rectangle of the viewfinder: the finder of the metal version is somewhat better. Perhaps because of the chroming process, the other is not so straight...?
cedricfan Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 10:08:34 AM
Thank you for the pictures, an amazing pair of cameras :)
Also amazing as a find, just the reason why you should always check those small shops and flea markets. You never know what gems there can be...
And may help to solve the mystery of TSVVS. These may be the missing links in the puzzle, and one more proof that TSVVS was not a series of fakes made much later than claimed.
Remember that Jena looked like this after the war:

And this is Dresden:

Easy to imagine, that all parts available were used to build cameras, tradeable to bread. Best ones to the new rulers, engraved TSVVS, and the rest unlabeled, bit rougher, and to anyone with valuable to trade.
Remember that those who were young in 1950 are now very old, meaning that all possible "old junk" is surfacing when their homes are now cleaned...

Best regards,
Jacques M. Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 09:08:24 AM
Thanks for the new photos, Ad.
Looking at them, it seems that:

On the above version, the strap lugs are lower than on ordinary TSVVS-s,
On the other one (below), it's the middle screw which is not on its common place. And the rectangular finder ir not exactly centered.

This last remark is important, as most fakes have a wrong rectangular window, too large, because of a cover borrowed to Fed 1 (I have not said that your camera is a fake!).

Now, concerning the classification adopted by sovietcams, I don't see why these non engraved TSVVS should necessarily be pre serie cameras. But the shape of the cover, they should rather be intermediate prototypes or post series. I ask Aidas about it. Certainly he will answer!

Alexander: I cannot see if you have screws or rivets to fix the lock of the bottom on your camera? It seems there are inside numbers stamped?

Amitiés. Jacques.
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 08:16:22 AM
Hello Alexander,
I saw the pictures of your camera: very much alike mine! (Except the 4 screws on the front, mine arer all black.) And of course, as mentioned above by Jacques already, mine seems to be newer because of the rounding near the rangefinder. (But the PH1005 on the site: http://www.sovietcams.com/index.php?1556498228 has a rounding too. And they wrote on that site "Seems to be an earliest version of TSVVS camera (...)". So I'm not so sure anymore about the age, pre or post....)
You are a lucky guy too to possess such a camera!
uwittehh Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 07:42:28 AM
Hi Ad,

no doubts for me that they are both real TSVVS cameras. Congratulations to that find. The chromed one could be chromed later, but to say that one must have it in the hands.

If you are interested I can inspect and clean them. I have disassembled my TSVVS some times ago and I think I can say if yours are real.


Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 07:11:38 AM
Hello Juhani,
At your request: 2 pictures of the camera's. Above the chromed version. It's difficult to make a picture of the chromed version: strange reflections all over.



Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 19 2016 : 07:01:58 AM
Hello Alexander,
I'll examine your photos. Thanks.
AlexanderK Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 3:49:29 PM
Hello Ad,
I think it is not too late to join the thread. You can see my no-name TSVVS hier:
It looks similar to yours. If you need more photos to compare let me know.

Regards, Alexander
Guido Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 3:13:09 PM

Hello Ad

I'm very interested in this find and I don't have a clear opinion about it at the moment. Your cameras are not very well documented at the moment as Jacques mentioned more than one time. More and better pictures would help a lot. I don't understand what picture is showing camera A or B. I can't say anything about the authenticity of the cameras because I own a not so authentic copy only (made from a FED).

It would be a very good idea to meet Jacques with your cameras and I'm shure this would bring us to new interesting facts.

I would consider not to change anything at the cameras too. Please keep them as they are because of the historical importance they may have.

Best wishes - Guido
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 3:09:12 PM
Hello Jacques,
70, vraiment? Really? I can't wait ... :)
Jacques M. Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 2:55:08 PM

If I were you, I would not do that, unless you are a pro. You risk to scratch the screws and spoil the screw-threads when remounting. And there are not only the six screws on the upper plate to dismount; the four black front screws too: they tie the shutter box directly to the body... And the four screws of the lens plate also, for sure...

You should train on an inexpensive Fed or Zorki before trying that on your cameras...

As for showing my 70 Fed 1 to you, no problem when you are here!


Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 2:03:30 PM
Hello Jacques & Bill,
Thanks for the investigation, research and good words.
I wanted to search for a repair of the shutter (the ribbon of the curtain of the normal metal version, is broken). But I follow your advice: I'll do nothing at the moment. But: I'm very curious if there is a number inside the camera. It can do no harm to unscrew the 6 screws of the camerahouse?

And when I'm in France again, I 'll take a look at your 1d, Jacques :).
And Juhani: I'll make some better pictures of the whole camera.

nightphoto Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 10:50:07 AM
Hi Jacques,
Yes, you are right. It does seem that these two cameras have come from the second group from looking at the shape of the corner, as well as the date of the lens.

So, maybe not prototypes, but two cameras from the second year of production that were left in East Germany rather than sent to the USSR. Since one has 'mirror' chrome and on has 'frosted chrome, maybe the mirror chrome one was constructed from parts that were taken from production before the frosting of the chrome, which maybe can be explained (as well as no engravings of numbers or logos) to be samples put together to look at the changes made (so, a sort of prototype or example of the second series?).

Regards, Bill

Jacques M. Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 04:08:49 AM
Hi Ad,

I completely agree with Bill about the historical importance of your cameras.

About the shape of the cover, if we refer to the following thread: http://ussrphoto.com/Forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=2094 , it seems that the "round" corners of the cover were made after the "straight" ones. Yours have round corners. If we consider too the lens (which could be original on the camera), delivered in 1951, we could have post production. But we know not how the normal running was delivered. And pre production would be more logical!

Concerning the dimensions of the cameras, I really think that you should buy a 1d or 1f to make a close comparison with your two cameras, Ad. If it's not possible for some reason, I can send you one of my Fed 1.

Amitiés. Jacques.

cedricfan Posted - Dec 18 2016 : 01:37:01 AM
This has been a very interesting topic, and may help in solving the TSVVS history.
But one wish: I would love to see better pictures of the whole cameras.

Best regards,
nightphoto Posted - Dec 17 2016 : 7:00:37 PM
Hello Ad,
As well as a very rare lens (which is likely original to the camera, considering the date) both of your TSVVS cameras are also rare. They are likely more rare than the usual TSVVS cameras seen in collections, auctions, and for sale.

Both have no TSVVS Soviet Military markings or logo. Niether has a serial number. So it is likely that they were never in the hands of the Soviet military services. They may be prototypes and that may be what the engraved "1" that you pictured refers to - prototype or example No. 1.

Also, one of your cameras appears to have a highly mirror polished chrome finish. This is very unusual and may have been the original idea for the finish instead of the normal acid-frosted finish found on other examples.

So, It would be my strong opinion that it would be better to leave the cameras in the condition they are in rather than to devalue them with a CLA just so they can work. There are plenty of working examples of the TSVVS but yours are special and any replacement or alteration of parts could be harmful to the originality and thus the history of each camera.

I have always thought that the probability of these cameras having been designed and produced in Soviet Occupied East Germany, with the exception of possibly having been engraved in the USSR (although the style of the engraving is not so much like other Soviet cameras either).

You have found a treasure trove of museum pieces, so please be careful with them!

Regards, Bill

Jacques M. Posted - Dec 17 2016 : 10:42:39 AM

It was in 1951 that Zeiss modified the distance scale on their lenses (cm -> mm).

So, your lens belongs to a serie of 10 lenses in a Contax mount. This serie was the last for the f2,8-5cm/50mm (in Contax mount)and the only one to be marked in mm. All the precedent were marked in cm. There were no other 2,8/50mm in Contax mount later.

Of course, it's a rare lens, as only 10 exist!

Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 17 2016 : 09:57:59 AM
Hello Jacques,
I've a question about your remark of Dec 15 2016 :  03:57:14 AM.
(It's a pity that I don't own the CZJ inventory book of Thiele.) You noticed that on 14/6/1951 a series of 10 were made.
Do you mean 1 serie of 10 lenses or 10 series of ... lenses? And only 1 lens with the inscription of 50mm? That's peculiar and rare...
Regards, amitiés,


Jacques M. Posted - Dec 15 2016 : 4:06:51 PM

I don't know if your "1" can be considered as an original cipher: impossible to say, only by a photo. It depends on the depth of engraving and the dimension of the cipher... And it would be necessary to compare the position of the numbers on all the TSVVS we know: are these numbers always put in the same place?

TSVVS are rare cameras (probably 1000 samples), so they are not completely known. Already for the running production! As for your couple...

Jacques M. Posted - Dec 15 2016 : 3:51:40 PM

About a repair/cleaning, you will do what you want, Ad.
But frankly, I would keep the two cameras in their actual condition, so that they can be studied a bit more closely, by an expert, for example...

If you decide to have them cleaned, a Leica screw mount specialist will be perfect. No doubt you have some in Netherlands. If not, I can provide you two adresses in France.

Amitiés. Jacques.
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 15 2016 : 3:30:47 PM
On the picture of the bottom plate (12 december (4:18:51) I can see a number: "1", I suppose. This is confusing... (Should be "2".) Below a detail/close up.


Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 15 2016 : 2:02:53 PM
Hello Jacques,
Merci beaucoup. Thanks a lot.
I'm going to read it with great enthousiasm.
Can we conclude (about the 2 camera's) that it is worth to make an investment for repair/ cleaning?
So yes, it is probably to difficult do do it yourself. Do you know a capable person here in Europe?
Jacques M. Posted - Dec 15 2016 : 08:37:13 AM

Another thread about the same subject:

Jacques M. Posted - Dec 15 2016 : 03:57:14 AM

OK, I have dreamt.
It would have been interesting: it's at this right place that there is a stamped number (at least on my "264").

I have nothing more to add now. You can see that there are vey light differences between these two backs of shutter box. More generally speaking, I always think that your cameras are pre or post run TSVVS.

The lens is most interesting too. It belongs to a series of 10 (only !!) Tessars delivered the 14/06/1951, by Thiele. It's the last series of this lens produced by CZJ. And the only one to be written "50mm", not "5cm". The date is interesting in itself: it could lead to a post series for the cameras.

Amitiés. Jacques.
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 4:20:10 PM
Hello Jacques,
A "2"????? (Chromed version.)


Jacques M. Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 3:07:20 PM

Picture 10:19:47, camera with rivets. The "17" is on the right, between the right extremity of the spring and the screw...
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 2:14:15 PM
Hello Jacques,
"17" you saw , on the right ...? ( Picture of 10:19:47, below?) Where exactly? Can you give me the coordinates :) ? (I feel like David Hemmings in Antonioni's Blow up... :) )
And what is the location "inside the bottom plate"? I'll have to remove something, the blade?
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 2:03:50 PM
Hello Vlad, thanks a lot.
Now I'll have to search for my old Russian dictionary. (I haven't used it for more than 30 years...)
Vlad Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 11:23:04 AM
For now I was only able to find one of the articles placed in April 1968 Soviet Photo "courtesy of Czechslovakian reader": This one is how to adapt an LTM lens (Russar) into Contax mount. There are more drawings somewhere that throw hints here and there of crossover LTM/Contax technology that had been experimented on in Poland/Czechoslovakia in those days.


Jacques M. Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 10:54:52 AM


It seems I see a "17" on the right of your second camera. Can you confirm?
No cipher inside the corresponding bottom plate?

Jacques M. Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 10:30:00 AM
OK. The springs are TSVVS ones.
Fed's are flat:


Sure Vlad will post here the article when he has found it.


Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 10:27:48 AM
Hello Vlad, Jacques,
Why fire and firebrigade? Those are severe words :). It lookes like I've missed a dispute ...?
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 10:19:47 AM
Hello Jacques,
Here is a picture of blades you meant. They look the same to me. The second looks a bit out of alignment.... (Metal version above.)


Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 10:14:57 AM
Hello, Vlad,
Interesting that old article. When you have find it, could I receive a copy? I will make a try to read it....
Jacques M. Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 09:29:42 AM

You have a part of the release spring on your 4:17:57 post. It's the blue/black blade which is in connection with the release button: the spring moves when you press the button.

Vlad, sure you are an incendiary. You have prepared the extinguishers?

Vlad Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 08:50:30 AM
This may be going towards more discussion again about TSVVS origins, but a friend in Russia sent me an old article from Soviet Photo magazine (I have to find it, but it's in Russian), by a Polish technician who was describing installing a Contax mount on a FED camera. There was then a whole group of Russian collectors that started inclining towards a theory that the whole series were produced by this very talented group of Polish technicians as a "fantasy" series. Same people who made the FED Sport and Zorki 75. One of their arguments was that no one knew about this camera until it showed up in 1990s on the collector's market and there is no record of it anywhere before 1980s or so...

I hate to start another fire, but I think this forum is the place where to air such theories.

Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 08:47:38 AM
Hello Jacques,
Release spring = release button? Or do I have to search for a special spring in the body?
Mosasaurus2 Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 08:35:32 AM
Hello Jacques,
Here are 2 pictures of the of the bottom-plate (and here appear some more differences: (above) riveted (chromed version) and bolted (normal metal version)).



Jacques M. Posted - Dec 14 2016 : 08:15:38 AM

So, original TSVVS or not? Impossible to be absolutely sure.

No doubt that some features are original: the buttons, the accessory shoe, the ears for straps, the leatherette. And the general look too: I agree with Vlad.

For me, they could be pre series cameras, before the official production, with some Fed/Leica parts. Or post series ones, with original parts completed with others. The fact that these cameras are not engraved goes in that direction: they could have been made in Germany, as said previously, but not sent in USSR, because non official ones.

Of course, we cannot completely exclude that they are fakes. A regular TSVVS worths 3000€ or so. At that price, it's easy to convince a faker. But I don't think it is the case: too many details are original. And seeing the price you paid for them...

You really have very interesting cameras, Ad. Just the ones I love: those who put questions!

Amitiés. Jacques.

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