CONTAX rangefinder

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by MTC Photography, Nov 5, 2020.

  1. contax  rangefinder.jpg
    Contax rangefinder camera
    Lens: Zeiss Sonnar 50mm F2
    Aperture 2 2.8 4 5.6 8 11 16 22
    Speed dial :1 2 5 10 25 50 100 250 500 1250
    ( To change shutter speed, pull up the speed ring then rotate)

    To remove lens from camera, first press down a small lever on the lens barrel
    then rotate the len clockwise about 15 degree and pull lens out
    To insert the lens, align the larger tap at lens bottom with the larger gap on camera opening, insert lens and rotate lens counter clock wise until clicks
  2. Hard to find original Contax rangefinder Sonnar 50mm F2
    lens cap.
    Fortunately Leica rangefinder lens cap fits perfectly
  3. There is an exposure meter on top of the camera
    To operate the exposure meter, push at tap at the
    left side of meter to open the exposure meter cover
    then rotate the ring at left side of camera until the
    meter needle points to the diamond mark at center
    of the meter.
    Transfer the reading to the aperture ring or speed dial
  4. The aperture has 11 blades
  5. The lens barrel is locked at infinity position
    To focus the lens, pull a tap at top right corner of the lens
    to free then lens, then rotate lens barrel to focus
  6. The tripod socket of Contax rangefinder is old stype

    3/8 inch thread. Need a 3/8 to 1/4 inch thread adapter
  7. AJG


    Not if you have an export model marked in feet instead of meters on the focusing mount--those cameras have a stock 1/4" tripod mount.
  8. [​IMG]

    135mm f4 Sonnar..


    21mm f4.5 Biogon.



    85mm f2 Sonnar.

  9. My model is indeed marked in feet

    Focus markL Infinity 100 50 30 20 15 12 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 feet

    after 4 feet mark the lens barrel still can rotate clockwise until stop the stop corresponds to 3 feet
  10. The depth of field is marked on the lens ring on the body,

    At the center is a red dot, on left and right symmetrically

    marked with the aperture stops

    22 16 11 8 5.6 4 2.8 2 * 2 2.8 4 5.6 8 11 16 22
  11. There is a large red dot on the body front near the lens about half inch from the lower left corner of right viewfinder window.

    I have no clue what is the function of this large red dot.
  12. The hot shoe is marked with Zeiss Ikon lens logo and
    "Stuttgart Germany" followed by the serial number
  13. There is a time delay lever at right side of the camera body
    To operate the time delay, first clock the shutter first

    rotate the large knob on top of the camera clockwise

    until click stop, then pull time delay lever 90 degree

    until click stop. Press release button to start

    If you pull the time delay lever before clocking the shutter, it does not click

    stop, but starts zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz rotate back to original position
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2020
  14. The original take up spool of Contax ranger has a film

    leader clip.

    There is no slit on the spool

    The take up spool of Russian Kiev rangefinder also fits Contax rangefinder.

    The Kiev rangefinder camera take up spool,

    however,has film slits, no clip.

    Do not lose this original Contax rangefinder take up spool

    It is hard to find.
  15. One possible function of the large red dot under the large rangefinder window-- a mark for infra red ??

    Not likely, it is too far apart from the proper focus marker
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2020
  16. No.....

    The red dot is the index marker you line up with the red index mark on the lenses when you mount them. There’s an inner red dot for the red dots on the 50mm lenses and the outer red dot is for the other lenses that use the wider outer bayonet mount.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2020
  17. Greg beat me to it, the red dot is the index mark for lenses that mount on the external bayonet. The pin just above the dot is also for external bayonet lenses, it serves to disengage the infinity lock when one is mounted.

    Incidentally, it's a Contax IIIa, the revised design built by Zeiss in West Germany.
  18. To the OP - Martin (?), your contributions are potentially interesting and informative, but you are not doing yourself any favours by putting the information in multiple posts as you often do. Members are less likely to persist in reading them through and respond. I normally compose my threads in a word processor, often returning to them over a period of time until I'm happy, before copying and pasting into with the pictures.

    Just something to think about.
  19. Thank you Steve and John
  20. What is the function of the button at the back of
    Contax rangefinder, two inch right of the back viewfinder
    peep window.
    This button cannot move or depress

Share This Page