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11-05-2009, 01:02 PM   #1
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Impulse buy: Early H1a & odd? meter

Don't ask me why, but I impulsively jumped on a Buy It Now last week and (if it can survive a trip through that shipping hell we call UPS) it should be here later this week. I'm finding a lot of info on the H1a (and I believe this is the early type, 1962-1964). However, I'm having trouble finding any meters that look like this one.

Can anyone point me to any information on it?
These are the eBay pics. I'll hopefully take some better ones once I get it cleaned up.

I have to admit to liking how it looks!

11-05-2009, 03:28 PM   #2
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Aha. I think that's a good find you have there. Don't know the odds of the meter working, but I think they're of interest.
11-06-2009, 07:22 AM   #3
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From what I can see, your H1a is a 62-64 model as indicated by the green "R" on the rewind crank. Post 64 the "R" was orange. The best indicator, since the rewind crank can be replaced, is the latch for the film door. If the latch is located on the door itself, it's an early model as the latch was moved to the body on later models.

The meter is simply the round meter as opposed to the more common square one.

11-06-2009, 08:45 AM   #4
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manual at
I think it was called S1 elsewjere

11-07-2009, 09:42 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by titrisol Quote
manual at
I think it was called S1 elsewjere

The S1 is actually a different body which was also marketed as the S1. The H1a was marketed with the SV also sold as H3v. The H1a was also known as the S1a.

Here is a link to the Model designation and time line of the names for the M42 bodies at the Asahi Optical Historical Club.


Here is a link to Butkus' site. He has very good quality scans of many Pentax camera and gear manual as well as other brands. There are even some historic catalogs there. You don't have to type in a password every time you open the PDF either.

Edit: What makes it confusing initially on the Model designation is that they aren't in sequential order, plus there were Honeywell/Heiland designations for some them for a period as well, especially the pre-Spotmatics.

Last edited by Blue; 11-07-2009 at 09:58 AM.
11-07-2009, 09:50 AM   #6
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You will find that that meter comes off and that camera has great lines. You can actually set the shutter speed to 1/1000 is just isn't marked on the dial. It was a marketing thing. The differences in the H1a and the SV (a.k.a H3v) is this, a different screen and no self timer.

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