FirstFlex camera- suggestions, advice (A copy of the Rolleicord II)

Discussion in 'Medium Format & Large Format' started by CDG, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. CDG

    CDG TPF Noob!

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    OK, so the third camera I've bought this week, hopefully the last. In theory this camera ought to work too. It is a FirstFlex camera made by the Tokiwa Seiki company. I have read and believe that this camera is supposed to be a nearly exact clone of the Rolleicord II camera. It has not arrived yet, but I should be receiving next week or the following sometime...

    So does anybody know anything about the FirstFlex or Rolleicord camera that they would care to share? I've heard the old Rolleicord cameras were pretty good cameras, although not quite profesional grade like the seemingly legendary Rolleiflex. Anything I should look for specifically as soon as it arrives? The lenses look to be in good shape on this one, although they are unlikely to be perfect. I'm not a hardcore collector, but in my experience, many cameras end up with scratched lenses, unless by some miracle the previous owner had a filter to help protect the lens... In this case, I would doubt if the lenses are perfect, but I'm hoping everything will be good enough to take quality pictures.

    My list of purchases this week looks like:

    1) RicohFlex IIIB- price so low I couldn't resist, even if it is possible this unit is a display piece only.

    2) Polaroid Automatic 220- I have a bag set aside for this one and intend to put it in the tank bag of my little motorcycle to hit the trails with. The folding Polaroids are fairly durable, and as long as I keep the lens protected, it is unlikely to be damaged in a tank bag. A few weeks back I ran into a rare set of cloud filters that will work with this camera, or my SuperShooter.

    3) The FirstFlex camera listed above...

    :) I'm addicted to old junk. 2 video cameras, 4 computers, 4 film cameras all in a matter of 6 months. In all seriousness, your thoughts are appreciated. I'm hoping to use this FirstFlex camera as a more serious venture into medium format photography, but still not so serious as to make it a large investment just yet. Something with aperature an shutter adjustments though- unlike my Spartus Full Vue which is just a snapshot camera I snagged for the wow factor, possibly lomography...
     
  2. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I've never heard of FirstFlex, but if it's a decent Rolleicord copy it will serve you well.
     
  3. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The Firstflex was made around 1950 by Tokiwa Seiki, the same company that made the Soligor cameras later. This is a quote from a Japanese site"



     
  4. CDG

    CDG TPF Noob!

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    I think I read much the same. It looks like a really neat prospect for a unique but hopefully serviceable camera. I've read good things about the Rolleicord models as well, so hopefully this one will work out. If the RicohFlex I ordered is serviceable, than I will shoot both for a while and maybe downsize once I shoot enough to pick a favorite. Famous last words eh? :)
     
  5. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Yeah, I've been thinking of downsizing for the past 75+ cameras! Craig, admit it, you have the 'addiction'! :lmao:

    Besides, how can you downsize when you look at the camera you want to part with and it has this sad look, droopy lens and all that??? :D
     
  6. CDG

    CDG TPF Noob!

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    Yes, I pretty much have the bug. I love intricate/complicated things in general. It's the craftsmanship and degree of precision to which this old stuff was created. Of course the droopy looking TLRs I find are quite endearing and nostalgic (The other day I was watching the Munsters and identified what I think was an old Spartus model that Herman used to take a picture of a flying saucer in one episode).


    However, the Polaroid thing can be explained by a fascination with the weird. :)
     

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