About Fedka and Russian Cameras

Many camera collectors already know me as fedka on eBay, but a website is a more personal endeavor, so let me introduce myself. My name is Yuri Boguslavsky, and I live in New York City. I was born in Ukraine (part of the Soviet Union until 1991), moving to America in 1989. I am currently working as an engineer for a major healthcare company and pursue Soviet cameras during my free time.

Now about photography: my mother bought me my first camera, a Smena-7, when I was 8 years old. I was always fascinated with the way an optical/mechanical device, photo film, paper, and chemicals produce an image that captured a moment forever. During my school and college years, I shot myriad rolls of film and printed countless pictures, and I always enjoyed it.

Photo hardware and photo history have always interested me, but it was impossible to have more than the bare necessities back in the USSR. Cameras and lenses were scarce and expensive, and the whole notion of collecting Russian cameras would have been unthinkable. In 1990 I owned one Practika DTL3 with 3 Pentacon lenses (only one camera per family was allowed for those leaving the USSR). Twenty years later, I have a sizable collection of Soviet photo equipment and literature.

I chose the name Fedka because this nickname was given to the first FED rangefinders made at the Kharkov work commune in the early 1930's. As the Leica did to the world, its Soviet copy, Fedka, introduced 35mm photography to the Soviet Union.

Although there are several other websites dedicated to Russian and Soviet cameras and their history (they are listed in Links), I plan to do something different: to share my practical knowledge of Soviet (Russian) cameras with other collectors and users. I will post some important and useful information about Russian cameras, their design, history, and use, offering cameras and other equipment for sale or trade.

It will take some time to get this website up and running, but it will be updated frequently, so please visit it often. I would appreciate any comments and suggestions you might have. Please e-mail them to me at mail@fedka.com. My special thanks to my wife (and webmaster) Inga and my son (and editor) Mike.