FED 2

DSC 5180 Version 2
FED 2FED 2
Vital Statistics
  • Film Type: 35mm (135)
  • Lens: LTM (Leica Thread Mount)  - Here in this image I have a Industar 26m mounted.
  • Focal Range: 1m – Infinity with the Industar 26m mounted.
  • Shutter Speeds: 1/500, 1/250, 1/100, 1/50, 1/25 sec  & B.
  • ASA: N/a
  • Viewfinder: Coupled rangefinder
  • Exposure Control: None, You will need a separate meter.
  • Weight: Just under 600g
  • Other: Cloth Shutter, Hotshoe.
About
This camera was my first venture in to the world of Rangefinders from the former Soviet Union. I guess initially I was drawn to the FED 2 for several reasons. Firstly the ascetics are very pleasing, it is quite simply a beautiful camera, especially in Dark Red. Secondly the idea of shooting with a camera thats over 50 years old and from the USSR is to me just incredible, I can only image whats been witnessed through this viewfinder in that time!! Finally and probably most significantly is the mount (LTM or Leica Thread Mount), it was always in my mind to mount these vintage Russian lenses to my Leica’s where possible, obviously I’m not the first to do this, many have and its the images I’ve seen from those combinations that both fascinated and intrigued me.
FED 2 with 52mm Industar 26m f/2.8 Lens, Boxed with Instructions (In Russian….)
Fed 2Fed 2
Now there are significant numbers of these cameras still in circulation, in part this is testament to the quality, sure they were made by children in a Commune in the Ukraine but the end product is excellent. You can read more on the fascinating history of the Russian 35mm Camera here. I purchased my particular camera from eBay it came complete with box and Instructions (Not genuine) An English copy of those instructions can be downloaded online from here. 
FED 2 with 52mm Industar 26m f/2.8 Lens & Gossen Pilot Light Meter
FED 2FED 2
It has to be said, this camera feels just about as solid as a camera could feel, it is certainly robust. The Industar 26m mounted to the camera in these images is a copy of the pre-war Zeiss Tessar, more on the lens at a later date. I use my Fed 2 in conjunction with the Gossen Pilot Light Meter, this is a great combination and not as inconvenient as you’d think.
Common Issues
It is imperative to “cock” the shutter before you change film speeds. Any Change of film speeds without tensioning the shutter can cause damage to the shutter.
More Info
There is a great review of the camera here.
More technical info and fixes for the most common issues and repairs can be found here.
A selection of images taken by Fed 2 users can be found here.
The Last Word
Whats good:
Great esthetics, a beautiful reminder of a bygone era.
It’s no Leica, but the build quality is better than some would have you believe.
Whats not so good:
How can you pick fault with a camera of this age that is still in top condition……
Oops, there you go I thought of something, it smells just like you’d expect a 52 year old Russian Camera to smell!
It will never be a collectors item due to the huge number in existence, however if you love Rangefinders and film you need a Fed 2
Sample Images – Ilford HP5 Plus 400 with Industar 61ld Lens.
 
FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400FED 2 with Industar 61dl on Ilford HP5 plus 400


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