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Re: [Rollei] OT: Large Format
- Subject: Re: [Rollei] OT: Large Format
- From: veggie
- Date: Thu, 23 May 2002 14:09:43 EST
Professor Knoppow wrote:
"For the most part nearly any Graphic or Graflex camera can be put back in
working condition if its not an absolute junker.
Fred Lustig is the best at this. He has a stock of parts from the
Graflex company and knows the cameras very well. He doesn't like to sell
There are still good Graphics available, they were built by the
They have limitations: they are not replacements for a real view camera.
However all were made for hand held use and are remarkably easy to use
you get used to them.
Like Rolleis they were well designed and built to last."
If I may add some comments of my own:
Fred Lustig seems to have a good supply of parts but he appears to be
more interested in selling repairs than providing the parts themselves.
He quoted a price of $235 for a replacement focal plane shutter (wether
or not he did the replacing). This is unrealistic when decent Pacemaker
Speed Graphics, with working shutters, can be had for 3/4 that price.
The Speed and Crown Graphics are really in a different catergory from
Rolleis or 35 mm camera when it comes to repairs. The Graphics are far
larger and not nearly so densely packed with mechanism; there is also
less to go wrong. It is actually practical to do your own body repairs as
the mechanisms are easily understood. A decent set of jewelers
screwdrivers, tweezers, and a small pair of pliers is adequate for most
(1) For guidance on body repairs I recommend the Air Force Technical
Manual reprints frequently offered for sale on eBay for about $10 (for
Pacemaker Graphics). Plently of exploded diagrams and instructions on how
to repair the focal plane shutter.
(2) If there is a rangefinder problem, it usually requires replacement of
the half silvered moving mirror. Ed Romney has a web page (linked from
Graphlex.org) with useful instructions on how to do this. I've done five
rangefinders using sections cut from the same Edmund Scientific
beamsplitter and I still have some pieces left. Rangefinder calibration
instructions are on the Graphlex website. This is an inexpensive repair
to carry out. Remember that the little brass lockscrew inside the
rangefinder is left handed - don't break it off trying to convince it to
(3) Sticky Graphex shutters respond well to the lighter fluid
flush/lighter fluid graphite lube sequence. Every Graphex which I've done
this on (five so far, and one gummy Prontor press) have freed up easily
this way and continue to work reliably. I've had no luck at all with
Kodak shutters. Remove the glass, of course, before you go squirting
lighter fluid into things and let the shutter dry completely before you
reinstall the lenses.
(4) The leather covering cleans up nicely with black shoe polish followed
by several coates of clear buffing wax (Johnson's or Butchers's work
fine). For scalped areas of leather, redye them black with liquid shoe