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120 film RF Folders 120/220 Format Folding Rangefinders, including the various classic Zeiss Ikontas, Voigtlander Bessas, and their Ruskie copies.

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Light Leak Or Something Else?
Old 02-17-2017   #1
wjlapier
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Light Leak Or Something Else?

This is a continuation of my Ikonta 521A issues. I just developed a roll of Reala and looking at the negs ( still drying ) the line in the negative below is present throughout the whole role ( the negative in the photo is upside down ). I don't see it between frames. Is this related to the shutter? Or a light leak? There is a tiny pin hole in the bellows lower left if you were holding the camera in portrait mode. The line looks like it's right along the bellows where they attach to the lens. But no light shining through when I checked in a dark closet--how I found the pin hole.



I'll send this in for an inspection but for now I'm curious what some of you folks might think.
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Old 02-17-2017   #2
charjohncarter
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OK, small light leak: shutter I know nothing about, if it is a pinhole: seal it and check with cheap film.

I have a non-folder (Olympus RC35) with some type of shutter issue and it looks way different than yours.
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Old 02-17-2017   #3
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draw an arrow to problem areas. Do not expect an answer with a photo like this.
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Old 02-17-2017   #4
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What color is it on the color film (well what color would it be in positive)?

I'm still baffled by this one, having never seen anything like it.

Here's an example of light leaks from a pinhole in a bellows:


You'll just get what look like random blurs of light on random parts of the image.

The rough edge on your leak suggests to me that is it light getting in while the camera is folded (the bellows create the rough edge where they shield the negative from the leak?).
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Old 02-18-2017   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronald M View Post
draw an arrow to problem areas. Do not expect an answer with a photo like this.
I agree poor choice of photo to exhibit what I was writing about. I did scan the roll from yesterday and will upload it later, but basically, this area in the middle of the photo below is in every photo taken from this camera. Nothing loose. No obvious tears in the bellows. No large amounts of light shining through when I use a flashlight in a closet to check for light leaks.

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Old 02-18-2017   #6
BuzzyOne
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Shutter bounce? Get some gaffers tape/opaque card stock and start taping up the seams bellows and shoot a test roll.
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Old 02-18-2017   #7
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The way you seal your film on the reel after taking it out from the camera is not tight enough.
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Old 02-18-2017   #8
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Looks like a leak in one of the film spool chambers. The leak is not happening on the film that is in the gate for exposure. It is happening on one side or the other as the film 'waits' to either be exposed as it comes off the feed spool, or be finished winding on the take-up spool.

Put the developed negatives in the camera oriented as it was exposed with one frame lined up over the film opening. Have a spool on both sides for a rough guide and see where the leak is before or after the film opening itself.

Either a bent body part or a missing screw or other piece?

Well, that's my guess. Look to the film before and after exposure to find the source of the leak.
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Old 02-18-2017   #9
Robert Lai
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From your first image, the dark lines on the edges of the film indicate that you didn't put enough tension on the film before taping it, at the end of the spool. Light leaked in between the film edge and the spool. This may have been a continuation of the leak into the image area.

Try again, and load/unload in a relatively dim environment, and make sure you pull the backing paper tight before taping it up at the end of the roll.
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Old 02-18-2017   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BuzzyOne View Post
Shutter bounce? Get some gaffers tape/opaque card stock and start taping up the seams bellows and shoot a test roll.
It does look like a focal plane shutter issue, doesn't it? But, not knowing anything about the Ikonta, I googled it. It seems the 521A has a between-the-lens leaf shutter. The abrupt discontinuities in exposure in that one frame is puzzling. It doesn't seem like the exact same pattern happens twice, either.
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Old 02-18-2017   #11
css9450
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Daniel View Post
Looks like a leak in one of the film spool chambers. The leak is not happening on the film that is in the gate for exposure. It is happening on one side or the other as the film 'waits' to either be exposed as it comes off the feed spool, or be finished winding on the take-up spool.
And if so, the leak will extend beyond the edge of the photo and onto the unexposed edge of the negative. Should be easy to check.

Is it possible its a leak getting past the shutter leaves while the shutter is closed? I'm suspecting just such a leak in my Voigtlander and am currently shooting a roll where I am fastidiously keeping a lens cap on it all the time except for a few seconds when I take the actual photo (luckily I found a lenscap that fits). I'll know in a few days if its made a difference.
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Old 02-18-2017   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by css9450 View Post
And if so, the leak will extend beyond the edge of the photo and onto the unexposed edge of the negative. Should be easy to check.
Unfortunately, it isn't always the case that a leak will extend beyond the standard exposure area. Been there, done that, man what a royal pain to track that leak down!!!!

Tracking down light leaks is about the worst thing I have had to do with cameras. Be methodical, be patient.
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Old 02-18-2017   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by css9450 View Post
And if so, the leak will extend beyond the edge of the photo and onto the unexposed edge of the negative. Should be easy to check.

Is it possible its a leak getting past the shutter leaves while the shutter is closed? I'm suspecting just such a leak in my Voigtlander and am currently shooting a roll where I am fastidiously keeping a lens cap on it all the time except for a few seconds when I take the actual photo (luckily I found a lenscap that fits). I'll know in a few days if its made a difference.


I was wondering the same thing. Photo of the church on the left was shot after the one on the right.
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Old 02-18-2017   #14
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Oddly enough, this one shows the leak ( I think ) from the pin hole in the lower left of the bellows.

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Old 02-19-2017   #15
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On the last image, the top edge of the leak area shows a distinct pattern, and it appears to be similar in the upper images. That sure reminds me of the edge of bellows material- threads and/or tears along the edge of the bellows. Any chance the bellows are not securely mounted at either the front or (most likely) the back end?

Leaks will vary depending on lighting, camera handling, etc. The mystery leak I had with a Rolleiflex varied, one to three frames a roll. It all depended on how sunlight hit the focus screen and how far forward or back the lens board was set. For you it could be camera orientation, bellows relaxing into a different position when the camera has been opened for a period of time, etc.
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Old 02-19-2017   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Daniel View Post
On the last image, the top edge of the leak area shows a distinct pattern, and it appears to be similar in the upper images. That sure reminds me of the edge of bellows material- threads and/or tears along the edge of the bellows. Any chance the bellows are not securely mounted at either the front or (most likely) the back end?
That worries me.... Because my leaks look just like that! Yeah I could envision that fuzzy edge being an edge of the bellows. Makes sense.
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Old 02-22-2017   #17
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Shot a test roll--I hate wasting film--and never opened the red windows while advancing the film. 1.5 full revolutions each exposure. I read somewhere the seals around the red windows area could be the problem. I think that's it. The film is drying but I don't see the light leaks. Overcast skies so I'll have to ruin another roll during a sunny day to make sure it's not the hinge area either.

The problem with the red windows seals is that they are behind the pressure plate and that looks to be riveted to the back door. If someone has a solution to fixing this I'm all ears.
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Old 02-22-2017   #18
ColSebastianMoran
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#5 and #14 look like a light leak. #13 is confusing to me.

Look at the edges to figure out whether the leak is coming through the film gate or is hitting the film at some other point (e.g. on the take-up spool). Here's a thread about my light leaks.
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Old 02-22-2017   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wjlapier View Post
Shot a test roll--The film is drying but I don't see the light leaks.
Perfect timing! I also have a roll to pick up after work. I think you and I have similar leaks. I had not considered the red window before this but its another place to check.
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Old 02-22-2017   #20
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Well, my new roll of film in my folder came back without about 95% of my light leaks gone. A couple shots came with just faint fogging on the left side. What I've done differently with this roll is leave the lens cap on all the time when its unfolded, removing it just long enough to take the picture. My theory that light is getting past the closed shutter blades is looking good to me.

Wjlapier, maybe yours has a similar issue?

I got lucky since although my camera had no lens caps, a standard 52mm cap fits the Voigtlander slip-on shade perfectly. So now the cap is on anytime the camera is unfolded.

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Old 02-23-2017   #21
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Wrap the camera in a dark towel leaving only the lens exposed and take some photos in a short period of time.

This should isolate the problem . Also use a small keychain light as any flashlight is too powerful. Allow you eyes 5 min to adjust. Any leak at all is unacceptable.
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Old 02-23-2017   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by css9450 View Post
Well, my new roll of film in my folder came back without about 95% of my light leaks gone. A couple shots came with just faint fogging on the left side. What I've done differently with this roll is leave the lens cap on all the time when its unfolded, removing it just long enough to take the picture. My theory that light is getting past the closed shutter blades is looking good to me.

Wjlapier, maybe yours has a similar issue?

I got lucky since although my camera had no lens caps, a standard 52mm cap fits the Voigtlander slip-on shade perfectly. So now the cap is on anytime the camera is unfolded.

My goodness. This is the second time I knew exactly where a photographer stood, Downers Grove looking west.

First time was a tree at the Morton Arboretum. Can you imagine a tree.
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Old 02-23-2017   #23
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Back to square one. The same light leak is present even with the red door closed--bright sunny day today. I wonder if it's the hinge? Should there is some sort of seal along that side? The towel idea sounds like a good plan. I want to eliminate as much as I can before I decide to send it in for a CLA.
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Old 03-03-2017   #24
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Here's how my leak looks when I sacrificed a roll of film searching for the leak. This is with the lens cap on and the camera sitting unfolded on a desk next to a bright window for most of the day. Same kind of fuzzy edge like yours has.

Bellows, perhaps? We probably have the same kind of issues.

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Old 03-03-2017   #25
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I replied to your post in the other thread. Also, check where the bellows attach to the front standard.
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Old 03-03-2017   #26
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Thanks! Yeah its time for some close investigating. I haven't examined every inch of the bellows but it sounds like now is the time.
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Old 03-04-2017   #27
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Such large and obvious frayed fabric threads? These should be visible, I would think.
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Old 03-04-2017   #28
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Quote:
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Such large and obvious frayed fabric threads? These should be visible, I would think.
I think there might be a sort of "camera obscura" effect happening. Both with mine and the OP's. The threads will probably turn out to be tiny.
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Old 03-04-2017   #29
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Photograph of the inside of the bellows might be helpful - both folded and open.

Thank you.
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