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Re: [Rollei] dirty mirror??

- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Rose Pasquarelli" <rosebudlet  >
To: <rollei  
Sent: Thursday, April 03, 2003 8:35 PM
Subject: [Rollei] dirty mirror??

> Didn't know if anyone saw this...was all tangled in an age
mail LOL
>  I just aquired my 1st Rollei, a Rolleicord II to be
exact, still checking
> it out....think it might have a very dirty mirror.  The
image is not very
> bright or clear it seems in the viewing.....could this be
a dirty mirro, or
> just the way it was made back then? The pics seem ok. Is
the mirror
> something I can easily clean myself??
> ~~Rose Pasquarelli

  You can check the mirror by looking into the finder lens.
It could be dirty. Cleaning is not difficult. Its also
possible the ground glass is dirty on the inside, again not
difficult to clean.
  To clean either or both remove the finder hood. The hood
is fastened with four small screws, one in each corner of
the flange at the bottom. It pulls up when the screws are
removed. The ground glass may come up with it or may stay on
top of the finder. It can be picked up with sticky tape.
  Clean the ground glass with dishwashing detergent in warm
water. If its very dirty let it soake for a while. Scrub it
with a sponge or soft toothbrush and rinse well.
  The mirror can be cleaned by first blowing off any loose
dust. Then clean it with some "streak free" type window
cleaner on a Kimwipe or other lintless tissue. Wet the
tissue and drag it over the surface of the mirror. I don't
recommend alcohol because some early mirrors are silvered
with a coating of laquer over the silver to protect it.
Alcohol can dissolve some types of laquer.
  Its possible the silver coating has become tarnished or
has come off in flakes. That should be visible through the
taking lens. The condition of the mirror seems to depend on
the history of the camera. I have a 1936 Rolleiflex with a
perfect mirror despite obvious signs of having led a hard
life but have seen many other cameras where there isn't much
silver left on the mirrors.
  Dirty ground glass can lower the brightness of the finder
image to a surprizingly great extend. Oily dirt will also
make it look grainy.
  While you have the hood and ground glass off clean the
back of the finder lens. Kimwipes and streak-free cleaner
will do it.
  To reassemble the finder hood place the ground glass on
top of the finder and place the hood over it. Then put the
four screws back.
  I suggest working in a box to avoid loosing parts.
  Please note that Rolleicord finders are not very bright
even when in perfect condition. Adding a Rolleigrid type
fresnel lens will help a lot. These are plastic Fresnel
lenses which just drop on top of the ground glass, no
installation or finder adjustment necessary.
  Unless you live in an unusually dusty area one cleaning
should last for years.

- ---
Richard Knoppow
Los Angeles, CA, USA