View Full Version : Olympus 35RD question

10-03-2008, 23:17
Does anyone with a 35RD have problems with irregular aperture shapes?

I have a local friendly dealer who I occasionally buy small cameras from for fun. He knows the sort of thing I like, and looks out for them for me. He'll service them too, but this is all done in a very slow, relaxed manner, which keeps the price down :D

Anyway, 3 months ago, he found me a very nice condition Olympus 35RD, and agreed to service it, including taking the lens to bits to clean it etcetera. I've read that the 35RD is a pain to service, and the lens sometimes gums up, so this seemed like a good idea. Fast forward 3 months, and the camera is finally with me.

So here's my problem. When I look at the shape of the open aperture, it's like a random shape. It's not a perfect pentagon each time, but is usually distorted in one way or another. I have the option of having his service guy look at it again to see if he can improve things, or just returning it for a full refund.

What I want to find out is whether most 35RDs behave like this? It doesn't seem to affect the pictures I've taken so far. Can anyone help?

10-04-2008, 02:31
From 3,000 plus miles away my first guess is that there is still oil migrating from the helical into the shutter assembly or whoever serviced the camera did not get all of the oil out of the shutter.

Is Luton Camera Repair Services still in business?

10-04-2008, 05:52
Oil on the blades is a common malady of the otherwise wonderful RD.

10-05-2008, 00:15
Thanks all for your input, sounds like I should send it back to be reexamined.

John Hermanson
12-04-2008, 12:14
It is very common for the 35RD shutter to become fouled with oil. Symptoms of this: oily patches on blades, shutter release jammed down (camera won't wind) , or blades move very slowly. Only real fix is to completely take them apart, degrease all blade parts and rebuild. At Olympus, this took so too much time, so we just replaced the entire shutter assembly. We techs felt it was a shame to throw the shutters away, so we often ended up with our lower desk drawer loaded with old RD shutters. Also, all RDs these days need new foam seals. John, www.zuiko.com

12-06-2008, 02:56
Oiled or not, the blades should still make a perfect aperture shape. If it does not, someone made a mistake when re-assembling the camera. These cameras always develop sticky shutter and/or aperture blades, but their movement is always connected so should be either perfect, or none.
(sorry about my poor written English)

I have already opened and cleaned about 4 different 35RD and can tell you that irregular aperture shape is not normal..


John Hermanson
12-06-2008, 05:16
I've seen not perfectly symmetrical diaphragm openings in several Olympus RF bodies. It's part of the down-side of Seiko design , there was never a fix for it because it wasn't considered a defectt. John, www.zuiko.com

12-06-2008, 06:11
The worse I have seen was the Yashica 35CC blades, some of the apertures are really odd... but the 35RD ones, I believe are regular across all the positions (don't have mine here at the moment to check).

12-06-2008, 07:25
The worse I have seen was the Yashica 35CC blades, some of the apertures are really odd...

Isn't CC's aperture formed by shutter blades, not dedicated aperture blades?

12-06-2008, 09:04
I don't know... don't own any atm...

John Hermanson
12-09-2008, 06:03
The RD has a separate set of blades used for the diaphragm. They are mounted on a separate plate in front of the shutter blades. Unlike the shutter blades, I have never seen a 35RD with oil in the diaphragm blade mechanism. When the shutter is reassembled following a degreasing, care must be taken to not (even slightly) bend a very thin pin that extends from the diaphragm plate back through the shutter plate. This pin must be carefully centered in a thin slot so it can slide back and forth to stop down when shutter release is pressed and reopen as shutter is wound. This will not cure the sometimes irregular diaphragm shape but it will insure that the diaphragm closes to the correct point every time. John, www.zuiko.com

12-09-2008, 06:40
Thanks John. In the end, I gave up on the 35RD and sent it back. Lovely camera, but mine was quite unreliable.