The first camera with the Steky name appeared in 1947. It is often
listed as the first Japanese camera to use 16mm film. It would be more
accurate to say that it was the first "successful" Japanese camera to use
16mm film. Whatever, it started a long-lived series of cameras that
are still sought after today. Their unique vertical styling makes them
quite an attraction. Perhaps the most popular model was the Steky III.
It appeared somewhere between 1950 and 1952. No one seems to
know for sure. It's stamped III on the body, but some are marked "Made in
Occupied Japan" on the bottom of the camera, suggesting that they appeared
before the end of Occupation in 1951 -- the last year that Japanese manufacturers
were required to labels their products this way. The Skeky III's features
were not remarkably different from the original model -- and not at all different
from the model II -- but then even the original had nice features. The
Steky III has an interchangeable, three element, 25mm (f3.5-16) lens. The
focus is fixed at around 12 feet and had adequate
depth-of-field. Shutter speeds of B, 1/25-1/100.
The image size is 10x14mm. All Steky's were designed to use double
perforated film, but single perf will work as well. Unperforated film
is a problem since the camera was designed to use the perforations to advance
the film and film counter. Despite this, people have reported that unperforated
film will work if you advance the film slowly. Not only was the basic
camera flexible, but there were several accessories available, such as a
40mm (f5.6 - 16) telephoto lens, a 40mm (f3.2 - 16) lens -- both focusing
to 3.5 feet -- and a 17mm wide-angle slip-on converter, filters (UV, red,
green, 80A), lens hoods, cases, pocket tripod, flash gun, viewfinder masks,
clip-on viewfinders, nifty little case and more. No PC contact.
It's no wonder that these cameras are sought after -- AND USED.
And if you have a Steky that needs repair, we now have a section in
the CREATIVE CORNER detailing how
to repair the camera yourself -- with lots of pictures. See also the
descriptions of the Steky IIIA and the Steky IIIB.
COPYRIGHT @ 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005
by Joe McGloin. All Rights Reserved.