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RTS different models

biggles3

CI-Supporter
Hi everyone, can someone shed some light on a mystery. It's taken me 20 years to notice that there are 2 versions of the RTS. I have 2 bodies that unlike nearly all others have a small shutter dial locking button on the front of the top plate below the position of the dial. Does anyone know when these were made and how many were produced. I can't even find a brochure picture of one. The body numbers appear to be late production but I have bodies with numbers between theirs and after them all with clean fronts to the top plate.
Thanks for your time,

Graham
 

nickser

Well-Known Member
Hi Graham,
I assume that they are both RTS1's. Do you have some pictures of it to show us?
Paul
 

biggles3

CI-Supporter
Hi Paul,
A small piccie of one of the offending cameras is attached.
Cheers, Graham
 

dirk

CI-Founder
Hi Graham,

you are at the right place to find information about Contax


I guess you mean with your question the normal function of the Contax RTS II on the left hand of the body.

Look here in our manuals/broshures section:

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and

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There are 3 different RTS models. RTSI, RTS II and RTS III. The RTS I and RTS II are looking very similar. Only minor changes have been made like Titanium focal plane shutter, AE Lock, Shutter lock, lock for the film rewind knob, 97% viewfinder (RTS I has 95%), red speed info within viewfinder (RTS I has a needle), shutter speed of 1/2000 etc.

Most easily, you will recognize the RTS II with the on-off switch on the right hand top plate, below the exposure compensation ring. The RTS I does not have this.

Compare the RTS I here:

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with the RTS II here

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Apart of that, on the back there is normally engraved on the right side "RTS II"

The RTS III is a totally different camera. A lot bigger and heavier with internal motor, vertical handgrip etc. Look here for the RTS III:

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For production time-frames, this article might give you an indication:

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But as far as I know, there are no reliable data out there for production numbers and production years.

Hope that helps...
 

dirk

CI-Founder
... most important point I did forget


The image you uploaded is an RTS I. It has neither the on-off switch nor the AE Lock-Ring around the "viewfinder-information button" of the RTS II (#2 in the following image):

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ulisse2000

Active Member
Some RTS was produced for Medical/Scientific uses.
This model was identical to normal RTS apart that locking button.
Some of these cameras was hard marked "Medical/Scientific" on bottom plate, someone else only printed, so could be canceled by use.

Regards
Ulisse
 

biggles3

CI-Supporter
Hi Dirk,
Thanks for the reply. As you can see, this is a strange one. The button on the left front top plate is not found on nearly all RTS cameras - so how come I have 2 RTS bodies with an AE lock button on the front - none of my other RTS bodies have them and I can't find any references to them? I have 2 RTSIIs which of course do have an AE lock button at the rear. Can someone explain why these 2 RTS bodies (there must be many more) have this button at all, let alone on the front? A mystery someone here can answer I'm sure....

Graham
 

biggles3

CI-Supporter
Grazie Ugo,
Thanks for that explanation. Fascinating - I assume all other functions were normal as the cameras operate quite conventionally otherwise. This being so, there probably are not too many about. One of mine is marked 'scientific' on the base plate, though it appears to be hand written. The other is unmarked.

Thanks again,

Graham
 
D

djg

I'm growing nostalgic - I've owned the RTS I, II & III plus the 137 and 139. All I have left now are a host of CZ lenses for my EOS 1DsII, and many fond memories.

One of these is when I got my first RTS, I got the split-image screen at the same time. I was visiting in NY (back then - I live there now
). When I got back to my hotel, the venerable, late Sheraton East, I immediately proceeded to change the screen and put the 85/1.4 on all excited.

Much to my dismay when I clicked the shutter, the screen holder had not secured properly and slammed down wedging the mirror as it came up. The camera was jammed. The lens was jammed - it wouldn't turn. When I forced it, it did give but I heard a crack. After removing it and getting things back properly, next time I peeped through the viewfinder I saw the pentaprism had cracked. OOPS.

I thought for a minute, sweating, then proceeded to open and carefully left the viewfinder a bit loose, on purpose this time. I repeated my faux pas again and jammed again. I then took the mess down to the dealer, who proceeded to do as I did, forced the lens, removed it, and when we discovered the crack in the viewfinder he gave me another body. Pheew!

I have never liked deception, but this one time I gave myself some slack. I feel a little guilty, but not that much ... me and my Dad gave that dealer tons of business
.
 

nickser

Well-Known Member
Hi Graham, Just to confirm what Ugo said. My Good frien Bob Letsche, formerly a great contributer to this site sent me these pics and explanations. He has made a very comprehensive picture chart of Contax and Kyocera models.

"Sounds like a circa 1979 "Fundus" Scientific/Medical variant of which there were quite few made for use by Zeiss and others for Ophthalmic purposes. It's on the chart. Cheers, Bob.

This last one is a little odd in that it has the Sci/Med front shutter lock but may not have the deeper shutter release shroud, as seen on other sci/med. It can be seen on the top shot above.

Note the early data back

Cheers, Bob."

+++ jpeg +++ 412678 +++ Fundus +++
 

nickser

Well-Known Member
Hi Graham, Just to confirm what Ugo said. My Good frien Bob Letsche, formerly a great contributer to this site sent me these pics and explanations. He has made a very comprehensive picture chart of Contax and Kyocera models.

"Sounds like a circa 1979 "Fundus" Scientific/Medical variant of which there were quite few made for use by Zeiss and others for Ophthalmic purposes. It's on the chart. Cheers, Bob.

This last one is a little odd in that it has the Sci/Med front shutter lock but may not have the deeper shutter release shroud, as seen on other sci/med. It can be seen on the top shot above.

Note the early data back

Cheers, Bob."

 

biggles3

CI-Supporter
Hi Paul, Thanks very much for the additional info - I've learnt some new facts about my old system - wonderful. Your pics are much appreciated - the body in my pic has the deeper shutter release shroud - odd I'd not noticed it -and no base plate scientific markings. The other is marked and has a button rather than lever winder.
I live and learn... Thanks to all the contributors.

Graham
 
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