Go Back   Rangefinderforum.com > Cameras / Gear / Photography > Classic Film RangeFinders & Other Classics > TLR Forum - Twin Lens Reflex

TLR Forum - Twin Lens Reflex another alternative to the dreaded SLR way of seeing, this forum for all format TLR cameras

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes

Bought on ebay...what do you think?
Old 11-07-2016   #1
Ejg206
Registered User
 
Ejg206 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 10
Bought on ebay...what do you think?

Hi All

I am a total newby to this but bought this on ebay for my partner as his TLR I heard him talking about these and plan to take to a repair shop to ask about it tomorrow.

Thoughts before I go?

Any comments or things I should look into?

Seems like it will require repair and a service but was it a good deal? Can the cosmetic work be fixed up do you think?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Rolleiflex...vip=true&rt=nc

Thanks!!
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-07-2016   #2
ThreeToedSlothLuke
Registered User
 
ThreeToedSlothLuke is offline
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Eastford CT
Posts: 105
I have one of similar vintage also cosmetically "challenged" and I rather think I paid a fair bit more for it.
I did send it out for a CLA; the lens was cloudy and, as it turned out, the shutter speeds were quite a way off. That cost more than the purchase price but it was well worth it. Later I had the focus screen replaced with a Maxwell which makes it much easier to focus.

I did buy a replacement skin but by the time it arrived I had decided against replacing it. Gives the camera a certain aged elegance.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-07-2016   #3
Greyscale
Registered User
 
Greyscale's Avatar
 
Greyscale is offline
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Fort Dodge Iowa
Age: 57
Posts: 3,372
This camera



Produced this photo



Hopefully yours is similarly rough and ready. From the photos in the listing, the front element looks clean, at least. I would expect a little haze on the rear, and probably some dust. You are missing the switch for the timer, but that can be easily replaced. But even so, use a lens shade to eliminate flare, and you should get good images. A Rolleiflex at 60% is still going to be better than most other cameras.

I plan on never reskinning this one. I love it just the way that it is.

Think of it this way, for a camera to be used enough to earn a patina like that, chances are it has been a good camera for a long, long time.
__________________
my flickr

My RFF Gallery
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-07-2016   #4
Dan Daniel
Registered User
 
Dan Daniel is online now
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 1,256
That's a nice price for that camera. If it functions, you'll be in great shape. Even getting some work done you'll be doing well. I think your partner will be thrilled.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-07-2016   #5
Sarcophilus Harrisii
Brett Rogers
 
Sarcophilus Harrisii is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ejg206 View Post
Hi All

I am a total newby to this but bought this on ebay for my partner as his TLR I heard him talking about these and plan to take to a repair shop to ask about it tomorrow.

Thoughts before I go?

Any comments or things I should look into?

Seems like it will require repair and a service but was it a good deal? Can the cosmetic work be fixed up do you think?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Rolleiflex...vip=true&rt=nc

Thanks!!
It's easier to remedy mechanical issues than poor cosmetics due to parts availability. I prefer to seek out a tidy camera with good lenses that requires service. In some cases repair parts might be needed but Rolleis wear gracefully, so cleaning, adjustment and lubrication will often return proper function, then leaving you with a tidy, working, camera. The one you have acquired can probably be made to work well, but, without cannibalising external parts in superior condition from a donor camera, it is going to be impossible to make it look as good as a well-cared for, original example. It's one to fix and use as it is, to make good images with, and to accept its appearance as a part of its history and story.
Cheers,
Brett
__________________

  Reply With Quote

Old 11-07-2016   #6
Ko.Fe.
Me. Write ESL. Ko.
 
Ko.Fe.'s Avatar
 
Ko.Fe. is offline
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: MiltON.ONtario
Age: 50
Posts: 4,461
Quote:
"shutter speeds 1 to 500+B and aperture work well, focus and film transport fine"
according to the listing. Optics condition is unknown from the listing. Might be done deliberately. Once in your hands do flashlight test, to see if you not going to see this.

I was told it is evaporated lubrication, after I sold it. Knowing this, I cleaned the lens which was looking like this in another camera.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-23-2016   #7
Ejg206
Registered User
 
Ejg206 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 10
Thanks everyone for your advice, it has arrived and looks lovely. Will try the torch trick and also take it for a service- the place I have found costs 120 for a service, does this sound about right to you? I'm in London. Thanks again, will let you know how I get on! E.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-23-2016   #8
Chromacomaphoto
Registered User
 
Chromacomaphoto is offline
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 282
Price is good in the U.K. I would think, assuming they do the job right of course. Hopefully it will all be fine. I imagine the recipient of this camera will be very chuffed indeed*

*(colloquial British English expression meaning to be quite happy)
__________________
http://www.chromacomaphoto.com
Photos of Thailand and Thai people. Bangkok street and candids, urban landscapes, and lots of film work plus a blog on all of this.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-23-2016   #9
p.giannakis
Registered User
 
p.giannakis's Avatar
 
p.giannakis is offline
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Stafford - UK
Posts: 1,441
120 sounds a bit too steep for me. A year ago, Miles Whitehead quoted me 45 plus p&p to service my YashicaMat assuming that no major parts need replacing. Contact him to see if you can get a better quote.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #10
Sarcophilus Harrisii
Brett Rogers
 
Sarcophilus Harrisii is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by p.giannakis View Post
120 sounds a bit too steep for me. A year ago, Miles Whitehead quoted me 45 plus p&p to service my YashicaMat assuming that no major parts need replacing. Contact him to see if you can get a better quote.
Yes, but a Yashicamat is not a Rolleiflex, the extra complexity of the latter means that more adjustments may be needed, especially in this case. Given the external appearance the camera has clearly had an extremely hard life so it's likely to need a great deal of time spent on it in order to get it back to factory specs.
Cheers
Brett
__________________

  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #11
scigeek
Registered User
 
scigeek's Avatar
 
scigeek is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wales, UK
Age: 67
Posts: 253
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarcophilus Harrisii View Post
Yes, but a Yashicamat is not a Rolleiflex, the extra complexity of the latter means that more adjustments may be needed, especially in this case. Given the external appearance the camera has clearly had an extremely hard life so it's likely to need a great deal of time spent on it in order to get it back to factory specs.
Cheers
Brett
The camera in the picture isn't the camera we're discussing, which is "lovely".

Great buy, and cheap even if you do spend another 100 or so on a good CLA.
__________________
"She stripped off her rancid poncho, and laid out nekkid on the floor. We did it 'till we were unconcho, and it was useless any more." F. Zappa .
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #12
Nikos72
Registered User
 
Nikos72's Avatar
 
Nikos72 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Athens, Greece
Age: 44
Posts: 1,088
Quote:
Originally Posted by scigeek View Post
The camera in the picture isn't the camera we're discussing, which is "lovely".

Great buy, and cheap even if you do spend another 100 or so on a good CLA.
Penny wise it is always better to spend more on a verified working one. CLA does not always cost that cheap not to mention the additional time one would have to wait until things get sorted out.

Also, there are other things one should consider, such as the state of the lenses. Is there any separation, if yes can you fix it yourself, does it cost much sending it away to get it fixed?
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #13
ozmoose
Registered User
 
ozmoose is offline
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 25
As one who has an amazingly large collection of seemingly derelict but functional Rollei TLRs, as well as a carton of accessories for same, I would venture the following comments:

The taking lens looks clear, at least externally.

The body is beautifully, even gorgeously retro.

Rolleiflexes are chick magnets and if you are not careful, if you take it out on a weekend outing you may end up engaged to the loveliest lady in your town. I say this seriously...

1950s Rolleis are built like Sherman tanks and take the cheaper Series I accessories, which are plentifully and cheaply available on Ebay and from other sources.

Whatever you paid for it (and this was entirely your decision), you will never, ever go wrong with buying a Rolleiflex of any vintage.

All this from one who bought his first Rollei in 1966 and still uses it, and who has had an ongoing love affair with them (and the loveliest lady in my town) for the past half century.

Take it out and enjoy playing with it. If you have to, get it CLA'd. As long as it focuses correctly and the shutter speeds are not all over the place, it will give you some truly beaut images. (And by the way, focusing and wonky shutter speeds can easily be put right at not too great expense.)

Of course you will post a few images for us to view and enjoy on this forum, won't you?
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #14
Sarcophilus Harrisii
Brett Rogers
 
Sarcophilus Harrisii is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by scigeek View Post
The camera in the picture isn't the camera we're discussing, which is "lovely".

Great buy, and cheap even if you do spend another 100 or so on a good CLA.
Perhaps a post has been edited, because I've re-read every post in the thread and didn't see a mention of a second Rolleiflex by the thread starter. Did I miss it?
Cheers
Brett
__________________

  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #15
seany65
Registered User
 
seany65 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 341
@Sarcophilus Harrisii,

I think the 'camera in the picture' (mentioned by scigeek), is the one in the photo posted by Greyscale, and that it is the one meant by you, when you say:

"Yes, but a Yashicamat is not a Rolleiflex, the extra complexity of the latter means that more adjustments may be needed, especially in this case. Given the external appearance the camera has clearly had an extremely hard life so it's likely to need a great deal of time spent on it in order to get it back to factory specs.
Cheers

Whereas the first Rollei (and the only one) mentioned in the OP by Ejg206, does look in good physical condition, and this is the one mentioned by scigeek as being 'lovely'.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #16
xayraa33
rangefinder user and fancier
 
xayraa33's Avatar
 
xayraa33 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 5,028
Everyone has gone Rolleiflex bonkers lately.
__________________
My Gallery
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #17
Greyscale
Registered User
 
Greyscale's Avatar
 
Greyscale is offline
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Fort Dodge Iowa
Age: 57
Posts: 3,372
Quote:
Originally Posted by seany65 View Post
@Sarcophilus Harrisii,

I think the 'camera in the picture' (mentioned by scigeek), is the one in the photo posted by Greyscale, and that it is the one meant by you, when you say:

"Yes, but a Yashicamat is not a Rolleiflex, the extra complexity of the latter means that more adjustments may be needed, especially in this case. Given the external appearance the camera has clearly had an extremely hard life so it's likely to need a great deal of time spent on it in order to get it back to factory specs.
Cheers

Whereas the first Rollei (and the only one) mentioned in the OP by Ejg206, does look in good physical condition, and this is the one mentioned by scigeek as being 'lovely'.
I think that mine is lovely. Interestingly, that photo is by far my most viewed and faved photo on Flickr, by a very, very large margin.
__________________
my flickr

My RFF Gallery
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-24-2016   #18
Sarcophilus Harrisii
Brett Rogers
 
Sarcophilus Harrisii is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,056
No, I was referring to the one pictured in the eBay listing linked in post one, with the badly bent back, dent on the viewfinder hood, missing self timer lever and many other signs of having led an extremely hard life. Which is not to say, at all, that it cannot be made to be a very nice user. My point in post 10 however was, and is, that such a camera is likely to need a lot more time spent on making it right, than one which has been sympathetically used and has not been dropped multiple times and generally banged around, something that is virtually unarguably the case with the eBay example, given the vast amount of external scarring visible all over it.
Cheers,
Brett
__________________

  Reply With Quote

Old 11-25-2016   #19
seany65
Registered User
 
seany65 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 341
@Sarcophilus Harrisii.

Ah, I see.

I've just had another look and while I can't see a 'badly bent back', I can see the dent in the hood, and in the 1st pic, it looks like the the base of the camera isn't flush to the body, with this condition getting worse near the front.

I must confess I hadn't looked properly at it.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-25-2016   #20
Sarcophilus Harrisii
Brett Rogers
 
Sarcophilus Harrisii is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by seany65 View Post
@Sarcophilus Harrisii.

Ah, I see.

I've just had another look and while I can't see a 'badly bent back', I can see the dent in the hood, and in the 1st pic, it looks like the the base of the camera isn't flush to the body, with this condition getting worse near the front.

I must confess I hadn't looked properly at it.
Yes that base of the camera is the back. It's been distorted fairly badly to be sitting like that when the lock is actually fastened. Possibly twisted. It can happen a few ways, if someone is rough opening the camera it can be bent backwards, this will put a twist in it, deform it near the hinge or send the correct radius at the corners past 90 degrees (which is what seems to be the case in the first picture). This one is bad enough that it may not actually be completely light tight as it is, at certain angles to a strong light source, potentially. It's able to be improved. With careful bending, some templates, clamps, small blocks, punches, and a very light panel hammer, I could make it fit reasonably well, and work OK. But the fit will never, ever, be as tight as a good original one. Because they're made of aluminium there is a lot of stretching which happens, especially around the corner area. You can get them back in working shape but the fit is never as snug and perfectly even as a good, undamaged one. This all takes time to do of course, and the worse one is twisted the longer it takes to make it as good as possible.

As an aside it's this sort of issue that causes me to disagree when some people claim they're bulletproof etc. A comment I read somewhere just the other day was that a Rolleiflex is "built like a Sherman tank". Well, nup. No. Ain't so. They were made to very high standards indeed with excellent materials, and they are durable, and long lasting. This is all absolutely true. But they do not appreciate being banged around, it won't do the focus mechanism any good or the alignment of the lens board, finder and back condition. They repay careful ownership with very long service life. If they really were bulletproof it wouldn't be possible to terminally kill a back with nothing more than thumb and finger pressure, yet if you grab the base of the back with your fingers and bend it back on itself hard enough, this is exactly what you'll do. Durability and longevity are not the same as an ability to tolerate abuse...

When the time is invested in making the eBay purchase in post one right, then there will be another working usable Rolleiflex out there to be cherished, and maybe passed on to another family member one day or to another photographer. So please don't get the impression I'm trying to discourage the owner from having it attended to,. Quite the contrary, in fact, because I think it is important to save every one that can be rescued. Condition will simply dictate the time and financial investment needed to make any particular specimen as good as it can be.
Cheers,
Brett
__________________

  Reply With Quote

Old 11-27-2016   #21
Dan Daniel
Registered User
 
Dan Daniel is online now
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 1,256
Brett, the overall condition of the camera is probably why the repair estimate is 120, not 45 as for a YashicaMat. The back isn't too bad all in all. In the same way that they bend out of whack with too much ease, the proper pressure in the right places can often get them usable again up to a point. I think the odds are good that for the final 225 or so the OP's friend will have a nice camera. I'll take it as a good sign that the repairman has made a fair assessment of what it will take to get the camera back in working shape.
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-27-2016   #22
Sarcophilus Harrisii
Brett Rogers
 
Sarcophilus Harrisii is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Daniel View Post
Brett, the overall condition of the camera is probably why the repair estimate is 120, not 45 as for a YashicaMat. The back isn't too bad all in all. In the same way that they bend out of whack with too much ease, the proper pressure in the right places can often get them usable again up to a point. I think the odds are good that for the final 225 or so the OP's friend will have a nice camera. I'll take it as a good sign that the repairman has made a fair assessment of what it will take to get the camera back in working shape.
Hi Dan,
I agree with you mostly you know. My previous comment (post # 10, I think) addressed the point of why the cost would be more than that mentioned for the Yashica. The back on the Rollei is certainly fixable but clearly the camera has had a hard life. As long as the lenses are good, the rest can be made at least usable—and I hope it will be.
Cheers
Brett
__________________

  Reply With Quote

Old 11-29-2016   #23
Ejg206
Registered User
 
Ejg206 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 10
Thanks all for your comments. The 120 is for a general a service but am taking it in today so may get a different quote. Let's wait and see. I will report back! All your comments have given me a lot to think about!
  Reply With Quote

Old 11-29-2016   #24
oftheherd
Registered User
 
oftheherd's Avatar
 
oftheherd is offline
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 7,634
If things work out as we would all hope, since these are really great cameras when working well, you will want to look at this site: http://www.butkus.org/ and specifically at http://www.butkus.org/chinon/rolleiflex.htm where you can find your model somewhere. Actually, many of the Rolleiflex cameras shared much functionality so don't worry. Just experiment.

If it can be resurrected, it will be a fun camera to use. Let us know how it goes.
__________________
My Gallery
  Reply With Quote

Old 12-01-2016   #25
Ejg206
Registered User
 
Ejg206 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 10
Oh dear.

So here's the update. The place in London took it in for a service and to fix the timer but just called to tell me that on dismantling they found the self timer had been removed. They have lubricated it as much as they can but are not charging as cannot guarantee it will work. But they say it should still work.

I wasn't sure what to ask?

I considered asking them to try taking some photos and to develop them, what do you think?

Can it really work when a piece is missing? Is the self timer like with other cameras where you'd dash round the front for a selfie? Or is it somewhat more vital to get the any photo at all?

Please advise!! Can see my lovely gift slipping away
  Reply With Quote

Can a rolleiflex tlr take photos without a self-timer?
Old 12-01-2016   #26
Ejg206
Registered User
 
Ejg206 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 10
Can a rolleiflex tlr take photos without a self-timer?

Hi all

I bought a rolleiflex on ebay for my partner for Christmas and have been getting some advice from this forum.

The repair company have just contacted me to say they have done all they can but when they took it apart it had no self timer, like someone had messed about and removed it, maybe trying to put a flash in?

Anyway, all I would like to know is whether it really can take photos without a self timer?

Please advise! Thanks, E.
  Reply With Quote

Old 12-01-2016   #27
Ejg206
Registered User
 
Ejg206 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 10
I have been advised it can still work. Guess I will report back after Christmas then! Thanks everyone. Panic over.
  Reply With Quote

Old 12-01-2016   #28
scigeek
Registered User
 
scigeek's Avatar
 
scigeek is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wales, UK
Age: 67
Posts: 253
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarcophilus Harrisii View Post
No, I was referring to the one pictured in the eBay listing linked in post one, with the badly bent back, dent on the viewfinder hood, missing self timer lever and many other signs of having led an extremely hard life. Which is not to say, at all, that it cannot be made to be a very nice user. My point in post 10 however was, and is, that such a camera is likely to need a lot more time spent on making it right, than one which has been sympathetically used and has not been dropped multiple times and generally banged around, something that is virtually unarguably the case with the eBay example, given the vast amount of external scarring visible all over it.
Cheers,
Brett
My apologies Brett. Thanks for putting me straight .

Regards,

David
__________________
"She stripped off her rancid poncho, and laid out nekkid on the floor. We did it 'till we were unconcho, and it was useless any more." F. Zappa .
  Reply With Quote

Old 12-01-2016   #29
scigeek
Registered User
 
scigeek's Avatar
 
scigeek is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wales, UK
Age: 67
Posts: 253
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ejg206 View Post
I have been advised it can still work. Guess I will report back after Christmas then! Thanks everyone. Panic over.
Phew!

The suspense !

Please report back, with a pic or two if possible.
__________________
"She stripped off her rancid poncho, and laid out nekkid on the floor. We did it 'till we were unconcho, and it was useless any more." F. Zappa .
  Reply With Quote

Old 12-01-2016   #30
scigeek
Registered User
 
scigeek's Avatar
 
scigeek is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wales, UK
Age: 67
Posts: 253
Quote:
Originally Posted by xayraa33 View Post
Everyone has gone Rolleiflex bonkers lately.
Not me!

I like a vintage German camera - my go-to is a 1940 Leica 111c, but for usability in a TLR I've gone for a Flexaret.

I like a CLA prior to purchase in an old camera if at all possible.
__________________
"She stripped off her rancid poncho, and laid out nekkid on the floor. We did it 'till we were unconcho, and it was useless any more." F. Zappa .
  Reply With Quote

That is an excellent purchase!
Old 12-01-2016   #31
pepeguitarra
Registered User
 
pepeguitarra's Avatar
 
pepeguitarra is offline
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Los Angeles, California
Posts: 690
That is an excellent purchase!

I was going to bid on it, but it says that ONLY IN THE UK. Otherwise, I would have bought it.
__________________
It is not a photo until you print it! Flickr
  Reply With Quote

Old 12-01-2016   #32
Sarcophilus Harrisii
Brett Rogers
 
Sarcophilus Harrisii is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by scigeek View Post
My apologies Brett. Thanks for putting me straight .

Regards,

David
No apologies needed, David! I only ever want to help anyone who wants to, use these superlative German cameras and, if possible, avoid any pitfalls along the way. And I enjoy reading your posts, too.
Cheers
Brett
__________________

  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 15:58.


vBulletin skin developed by: eXtremepixels
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

All content on this site is Copyright Protected and owned by its respective owner. You may link to content on this site but you may not reproduce any of it in whole or part without written consent from its owner.