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Photos by JCA text by JCA. From the collection of JCA
France Version française

Chronology of the Fed brand  New window

History of the brand Fed New window

Manufactured in ex-URSS from 1988 until after 1998.
Index of rarity in France : Rare (among non-specialized garage sales)
Sold listing on New window
Inventory number: 10848

See the complete technical specifications New window
Fed Stereo

The FED Stereo has been manufactured in different versions by " Zavod Charkovskij Mashinostroitelnij FED"in Kharkov , Ukraine.

We are here in front of a standard version, the markings of which on the housing and lens are implemented in Cyrillic . Its dimensions are 160x82x56 mm and it weights 700 grams.

 It was introduced in 1988 and the production of the FED stereo considering all versions lasted until 1996.

 It uses standard 35mm film in 135 cassette to make 7 pairs of stereo images with a 12 frames 24x36 cassette , 14 pairs of stereo images with a 24 exposures 24x36 cassette and 21 pairs of stereo images with a 36 exposures 24x36 cassette.

 He produces 24x30 mm size stereo images couples, actually exactly 23.54 x29.30 mm , which is the European format " 7 holes " , as opposed to U.S. format " 5 holes " which is a 24x20 . Indeed 7 perforations on a 35 mm film correspond to the image width 30 mm , plus the space between the images, which is substantially 33.25 mm .

 Pairs of stereo images are crossed on the film and cocking lever of the camera advances the film one frame at a time. Thereby managing the cocking is  particular but identical to all devices in the European format " 7 holes ."

Once the camera is loaded, the cocking is performed  4 times and  ​​the first pair of stereo images is made. Then we cock one time to take the second pair . Then we cock 3 times to advance the  two stereo pairs 1 and 2 already taken and we take the third stereo pair , We cock once to take the fourth pair of stereo images. And so on, 3 times, 1 time, 3 times , 1 time ... until the end of the film. It is to be noted that the cocking system automatically locks itself  at the point  required by the progress of the film and there is therefore no thinking required , the cocking is achieved as many time as necessary and then we trigger to take the pair of stereo images. There is no loss of images with this system contrarily to the " five hole" system where the cocking advances the film by two images every time and where an image is left blank and lost at the beginning and at the end of the film. In addition, the "five holes" format, 24x20 , is a portrait format rather unpleasant on slides while the "7 holes" format, 24x30 remains a landscape format. About slides, FED also marketed a special projector for pairs of stereo slides using the cross-polarized light system as well as the glasses for viewing in relief these pairs of stereo slides .

 After this overview on the image management system , here are the technical specifications .

 The stereo FED has two coupled  lens Industar 81 , 1: 2.8 , 38 mm. The optical gap is 63.4 mm. The device has no rangefinder. Its Newton type viewfinder is clear and properly sized .

 This unit is automatic, and no access to the speed management system is foreseen.
 The automation is selected by the lever next to the right lens, positioning it on the "A". This lever is very fragile and must be handled with care.
 In this "A" position , the camera selects the appropriate speed/aperture pair, depending on the information provided by the photo- resistant cell . Possible pairs range from 1/30 at F 2.8 to 1/650 at F 14.


 The coupling of the cell is basic. The battery supplies a bridge wherein are located the cell and a galvanometer . The cell is located in the middle of a metal bell with holes of different diameters corresponding to the " sensitivity span adjustment " the button of which is located on the housing cover . The  provided range of sensitivities goes from 25 to 800 Asa . Depending on the reaction of the galvanometer in response to the cell, the galvanometer pointer , which is seen bent  on the photo at right , change in position . During the triggering a cam presses on the pointer and allows the selection of the correct speed/aperture pair . The automatism  has a slight tendency to underexpose.

 The same lever which allows the selection of the automatism also allows manual selection of 6 diaphragms, from 2.8 to 16. These six positions are associated with single speed 1/30 sec. and is reserved to the use of the flash  the X-sync of which is on the accessory shoe. Finally a poses "B" position is also accessible by the same lever , The "B" exposure is possible only at full aperture , and this is not ideal. The older models were able to select in the same conditions among 7 apertures from 2.8 to 22.

 The dual blade central shutters placed behind the optics allow speeds from 1/30 to 1/650 of a second , but only in the automatic position . The blades of the shutters also perform the diaphragm function due to their configurations .

 A ring on the left lens allows the selection of the distance on both lens. The distance scale ranges from 1 m to infinite , with translation into feet. The distance setting is continuous, without positioning clicks .

The power supply is provided by a PX625 mercury battery of 1.35 volts on early models and after modification to the newer models, by a battery SR44 silver oxide 1.5 volt . These newer models have in the battery housing  a plastic adapter ring . Do not use the PX625A which is an alkaline battery whose voltage decreases with use or LR44 for the same reasons . There 's no possibility to turn off the power , it is therefore necessary to remove the battery in case the camera is not used during a long period of time.

 The FED stereo was sold in box with belts, bag , two sun visors and user's manual in Russian language.

Fed Stereo

Fed Stereo