Is this Antique Russian Aerial Spy Lens Worth $400,000?

It's not uncommon, a unique or rare piece of photography gear pops up on eBay for an extreme price every now and then.  It was originally listed at $488,000 and the seller has kindly dropped the price to $400,000.

With the auction written in half-broken English, it's described as a "UNIQUE ANTIQUE 400mm AERIAL SPACE Lens LARGE FORMAT SPACE CRAFT AIR FORCE LENS", and the buy it now price is $400,000 with no option to bid.

For that, you get a 400mm f/4.5 large format lens, which is apparently derived from German Zeiss lenses, but " CRITICALLY UPGRADED to COATED PRECIOUS GLASS".  It even comes with filter and a cap.

While it does seem like this is a genuinely rare lens, that price does seem a bit astonishing. In the Q&A, someone who owns one themselves calls out the seller, claiming that their model (which is allegedly in even better condition) is valued at £8000 (around $12000). To which the seller replied "MUSEUM EXHIBIT... HISTORICAL RELICT... I DEVELOPED THIS PRODUCT FROM STRAY UNKNOWN LENS."

The seller also claims to be the actual ex-USSR photo expert with a master degree in philosophy and liberal arts.  It will be interesting to see if the seller will continue to drop the price if no one takes the bite.
Is this Antique Russian Aerial Spy Lens Worth $400,000? Reviewed by Blogs on 10/30/2013 Rating: 5

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