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 Zenit FS-12SDS (Fotosnaiper / Photosniper) Custom

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nightphoto Posted - Aug 26 2009 : 10:32:54 PM

Is there a reason that Viktor thinks this was done at KMZ for an important member? Any provenance in that direction?

Without a definite history or provenance, I would think that the wood stocks and grips on this beautiful Fotosniper would have, more likely, been done at a gun shop where rifles and handguns are customized with these on a regular basis. The shape and workmanship looks more like the work of that type of shop than of a camera shop ... at least to me.

Regards, Bill

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Vlad Posted - Aug 27 2009 : 1:20:05 PM
Excellent Zoom! Thank you!! Viktor was going to email you directly regarding this one by the way.. i'll pass this link along too to him.

Best regards,
Zoom Posted - Aug 27 2009 : 1:16:08 PM
Originally posted by nightphoto

Thanks for this reference Zoom! The gun stock and grips do look pretty much the same as on Viktor's example.

It is the same butt, absolutely. The camera only have changed. Why? Ask Victor.
nightphoto Posted - Aug 27 2009 : 11:29:50 AM

Thanks for this reference Zoom! The gun stock and grips do look pretty much the same as on Viktor's example.

I think that the Fotosniper does appeal to the same people who like the technology and look of sniper and competition rifles and so it is not surprising that some owners of Fotosniper would have the grips and stock replaced with something like custom Karelian Birch pieces.

Regards, Bill

Zoom Posted - Aug 27 2009 : 11:06:14 AM
Originally posted by Vlad

Not sure if maybe that is reference to this particular one or not, would be a good question to Zoom...

See http://www.zenitcamera.com/archive/selfmade/index.html#fs-anatomic-butt

"Zenit FS-12C Complete boxed FotoSnaiper. In the complete set a wooden rifle butt."
eBay item: # 3004458671
Started: Jan-29-03 13:07:47 PST
Ends: Feb-05-03 13:07:47 PST
Seller: rus_camera
Location: Moscow
Body Zenit-12S s/n: 86321809
Tair-3S s/n: 9210783
Industar-50-2 s/n: 7121312

Originally posted by nightphoto

Is there a reason that Viktor thinks this was done at KMZ for an important member?

Only a collector's vanity...
AidasCams Posted - Aug 27 2009 : 02:40:15 AM
Hi, nice to meet you again!

I do possess a complete set of Zenit-12sds fotosnaiper (it has FS-12-3 label on the case), but it doesn't look as good as Viktor's one unfortunately ... I was very lucky to hold Viktor's fotosnaiper in my very own hands and I can say it's amazing item of masterpiece indeed! It was very convenient even for my big hands I agree with Bill's opinion, that particular item could be made at a gun shop, for special order supposedly.

Although a relatively big quantity of Zenit-12sds were released since 1990 (according to sources, mentioned in this Topic), these cameras are very rare to find nowadays. Who can tell us why these cameras are so uncommon? Because of Zenit-12xps as main camera in this batch? BTW my 12sds and Tair lens were made in 1989, according to serial numbers ...

Best Regards,
nightphoto Posted - Aug 27 2009 : 12:41:55 AM

As far as I can tell, the FS-12SDS is a Fotosniper with a Zenit-12-SD body (so "SDS") and is also known as FS-12-2 (according to our own WIKI PDF file of : Russian and Soviet Cameras (1840-1991) edited and designed by "Iskusstvo" Firm, Rostov-on-Don, Author-compiler: Yuri Ryshkov ... who says :

"FS-12" with "Zenit-12SDS" and
regular lenses.

The KMZ site says that production of the FS-12-2 between 1990 - 1995 was 33,354. So probably, if all of this is correct, most or all of these FS-12-2 (FS-12SDS) units had a Zenit-12SD body ... so maybe not so rare.

Regards, Bill

Vlad Posted - Aug 26 2009 : 11:28:52 PM
Yup sorry, I had no idea how to translate the Karelian Birch, sorry for misspelling...

12SDS is mentioned on KMZ site as one of the variants of the FS-12 but with no production data in the main production chart... interesting thing is that the user manual posted for FS-12 there is for the FS-12SDS - http://www.zenitcamera.com/mans/fs-12/fs-12.html

Also there is a mention of FS Suvenir in the main production chart http://www.zenitcamera.com/catalog/cameraproduction.html Not sure if maybe that is reference to this particular one or not, would be a good question to Zoom...

nightphoto Posted - Aug 26 2009 : 11:18:03 PM

As far as I know, Karelian Birch is a valuable wood and is often used for custom gun stocks around the world. Very beautiful!

Do you know how many FS-12SDS units were made? And what is the difference between them and the FS-12 ? He is probably right about the factory, KMZ, having something to do with the custom stocks and grips if the FS-12SDS was only made as a prototype or very small edition ... but if it was made in the hundreds or more, then it seems like someone may have had one customized. In any case ... very nice unit!

Regards, Bill

cedricfan Posted - Aug 26 2009 : 11:15:58 PM
Maybe Karelian birch? It does look like what we call visa-birch and do have here in Finland. On the other hand Karelia actually is Finland, but someone took it by force...
It is not cheap, but not luxury either.

Best regards,
Vlad Posted - Aug 26 2009 : 10:47:05 PM
Well Viktor said "a factory", did not specifically say KMZ... so he may have meant it was meant as a present/or customized for some high ranking official customized at "a factory" out of Korellian birch - which is very valuable wood as far as I remember.. and as far as FS-12SDS goes those are very rare as well, so the connection obviously can be made back KMZ since it may have been one of the few...

the whole reason for me to post this really was because Viktor was asking for more information about it and all he had was educated guesses


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