The Steky is a 16mm subminiature spy camera that was was made in Japan during the 1940s. There were about 7 different variations of this brick-shaped camera produced by the Asahi Musen Company from Tokyo, Japan. It was the FIRST Japanese camera to use 16mm roll film. Because of its tiny tiny size, it was a popular spy and private-eye camera. Weighing just under 180 grams it measures just 6.35cm high, 4.44cm wide and 4cm deep.
At that time film and processing costs were expensive so 16mm cameras were very popular. Most of these 16mm cameras were of low quality and not much more than toys. The Steky came with interchangeable lenses, variable shutter and aperture speeds in a very robust camera. Some sub-mini enthusiasts still use these cameras by carefully loading their cassettes with perforated 16mm film. Once a common sight at camera shows the Steky is getting harder to find.
Its a simple camera and anyone familiar with a regular film camera will find it easy and simple to operate. The camera comes with a 3-element f3.5 Stekinar Anastigmat lens and f-stops go down to f-11. viewfinder is plain uncoated optical glass.
One needs to be careful when shooting because there is no double exposure prevention mechanism. Advancing film to the next frame, the user needs to wind a large knob on the bottom of the camera AFTER pushing down a little button/knob (this changes the film numbering dial located below the winding knob).
These are extraordinarily lasting and sturdy cameras partly because the mechanisms (shutter, aperture and winding ) were kept very simple.
- 10 x 14mm is the size of negatives
- Interchangeable lens mount that is same in size and groove for lenses that were on 8mm movie cameras. So many old 8mm cine lenses (often with f-1.9 ) can be mounted onto the Steky, I guess.
- top shutter speed 1/100 sec