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Dented leaf shutter & light leak
Old 09-26-2018   #1
carbo73
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Dented leaf shutter & light leak

Hi,
Several months ago I bought from Japan a perfectky looking, mint I would say, Minolta Autocord L. But in the first trial days it jammed open, but then it unjammed again after some seconds. Maybe it was that or it was already damaged, but first trial pics showed massive light leaks. I found that the pinhole was just in the middle of the shutter leaves. Maybe it closed with excesive force, smashing one against the other, I don't know. Local repairman says he can't repair this.

I have found instructions of how to separate the shutter from the camera (quite complicated), and how to disassembly a Synchro Compur, which they say is quite similar to the Seikosha this camera uses. Anyway the camera as is now lost most value because you can hardly take decent pictures with it, at least outside.

The question is, could a dented or deformed leaf in a shutter be repaired, smooted, etc? Are they metallic or plastic?

Thanks in advance
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Old 09-28-2018   #2
farlymac
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The blades should be steel, but could always be some sort of alloy. Will probably need replacement, especially since the reason it's damaged is likely the pivot hole is worn out. And if one blade is worn too much, then all of them will be.

Can't remember off the top of my head who it is that does Autocord repairs, but you can do a search of the forums, and his name will pop up.

PF
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Old 09-28-2018   #3
Sarcophilus Harrisii
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carbo73 View Post
Hi,
Several months ago I bought from Japan a perfectky looking, mint I would say, Minolta Autocord L. But in the first trial days it jammed open, but then it unjammed again after some seconds. Maybe it was that or it was already damaged, but first trial pics showed massive light leaks. I found that the pinhole was just in the middle of the shutter leaves. Maybe it closed with excesive force, smashing one against the other, I don't know. Local repairman says he can't repair this.

I have found instructions of how to separate the shutter from the camera (quite complicated), and how to disassembly a Synchro Compur, which they say is quite similar to the Seikosha this camera uses. Anyway the camera as is now lost most value because you can hardly take decent pictures with it, at least outside.

The question is, could a dented or deformed leaf in a shutter be repaired, smooted, etc? Are they metallic or plastic?

Thanks in advance
It's not that unusual for the tip of one shutter blade in some designs, to have a gentle curve outwards from the factory. Are you certain there's actually damage to one of the blades, in the first place? The number of times I have seen a new Rollei owner querying the "damage" to their shutter blade which is, actually, in perfect, as-new condition. A shutter that is merely sticking with contaminated blades may not fully close and the mechanism stall with a pinhole opening remaining. The number of Contaflexes I've handled that have done precisely that. Perhaps it only needs a service?

A photograph or three would go a long way here.

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Originally Posted by farlymac View Post
The blades should be steel, but could always be some sort of alloy. Will probably need replacement, especially since the reason it's damaged is likely the pivot hole is worn out. And if one blade is worn too much, then all of them will be.

Can't remember off the top of my head who it is that does Autocord repairs, but you can do a search of the forums, and his name will pop up.
PF
Phil, the name Karl Bryan rings a bell with me, perhaps he's who you were thinking of?
Cheers
Brett
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Old 09-29-2018   #4
Dan Daniel
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The Seikosha is sort of like the Synchro-Compur in overall design but not in specifics. If you haven't been inside a leaf shutter before I wouldn't expect good results on the first attempt. The one advantage of the Seikosha is that you don't have to strip down much of the internals to get to the blades- the main body separates easily.

Recently an overhauled Autocord I sold came back to me after a few months for an offset shutter blade leading to a leak. The pivot point at the base had been deformed and the blade sat slightly open.....

[some days I am just so tired of having to upload a photo to flickr then grabbing the right url to be able to post it here that I just won't do it, sorry... maybe some day they'll update their system here...but for today no photo for this reply]

I had another shutter with a different problem so was able to swap the blade set and all worked well.

If you are in Spain, shipping to Karl Bryan (great service) or me for repair probably isn't worth it. Especially given that sometimes there isn't a simple fix and parts aren't available to do the repair. One hint for a local repair shop is that the blades in Seikosha and the next shutter, the Optiper MVL, are interchangeable.

As to rebuilding or smoothing out a shutter blade, I would not expect it to work. The metal is spring steel and the tolerances are pretty tight.
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Old 09-29-2018   #5
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Thanks to all for you information, you know a lot about these issues.


It looks a difficult decision to made, as I've only limited mechanical expertise. On the other hand the camera it's already of limited use for me. Maybe as the easy end I'll send it on eBay counting on selling it as partially broken, although it looks so beautiful (and most of it works perfectly)...





Here are some of it's pictures, one with I pointed to the sunlight without knowing this problem, and another were I didn't point to the sun, where the camera still can work without problems....







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Old 09-29-2018   #6
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As you cock the shutter, does a leaf move around? More than one leaf? There is usually a small twitch but not what would be called a real 'movement.' Unless the blade broke or jumped a pivot point.


The pattern on your first shot looks like there might be multiple blades leaking?



Well, the repair process involves parts and time. I'd estimate $100-175+ USD if a shop is willing to take it on. Can you send it back to the seller?
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Old 09-29-2018   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Daniel View Post
As you cock the shutter, does a leaf move around? More than one leaf? There is usually a small twitch but not what would be called a real 'movement.' Unless the blade broke or jumped a pivot point.
I've checked several times, but I've not seen any movement in the shutter blades while cocking.

Quote:
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The pattern on your first shot looks like there might be multiple blades leaking?
I think that the wavy pattern is explained by my movements with the camera towards the sun without knowing this issue. Even with a backlit image at the end. I've checked with a torch and I can only see ony tiny pinhole, but just in the middle of the shutter.

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Well, the repair process involves parts and time. I'd estimate $100-175+ USD if a shop is willing to take it on. Can you send it back to the seller?
That's more than I paid for the camera, and probably I'll have to pay import taxes again, even for my own camera. Try to tell the tax agents at Madrid airport that it's my own camera...

Finally I've managed to take a decent enough image of the blades. You could clearly see the dent, but I don't know if the blades of the shutter are properly intersected. Maybe somebody disassembled and assembled them in the wrong way (and they collided once they stuck)...

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Old 09-29-2018   #8
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That doesn't look right. This beautiful camera deserves to be repaired thoug (mine is mich uglier), and you got it at a very good price as I see, so if you enjoy using it, I say save up for a repair (possibly a parts camera).
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Old 09-29-2018   #9
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Is the pinhole from a missing piece of the shutter, or from the shutter blade not closing all the way? Hard to see clearly, might be a chip out of the tip of the dented blade.

If you are feeling brave, you can get the front lens group out with a properly sized rubber stopper. Have it fit the diameter of the outer black ring and turn counterclockwise with mild pressure. Unscrew, maybe 8-12 turns? You’ll feel it come loose, then put hand over lens and flip camera over. Then examine the blade- looks to be the top blade so it should be possible to lift the edge. Consider restoring flatness with smooth- faced pliers. Or fine sandpaper or file. Sometimes this can fix it.
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Old 10-26-2018   #10
dxq.canada
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Did you keep the camera ?


Someone popped one or more of the blades out of position (or serviced it wrong) ... so they are not closing properly ... the dent is being caused by the blades the two hitting each other, when one should slide underneath.


The front lens cell unscrews ... so you can get at the blades.
They should look like this: https://oldcam.wordpress.com/2013/12...ord-shutter-2/
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Old 10-27-2018   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dxq.canada View Post
Did you keep the camera ?


Someone popped one or more of the blades out of position (or serviced it wrong) ... so they are not closing properly ... the dent is being caused by the blades the two hitting each other, when one should slide underneath.


The front lens cell unscrews ... so you can get at the blades.
They should look like this: https://oldcam.wordpress.com/2013/12...ord-shutter-2/

Yes I still have it. I will look at it with this great piece of info at hand. Maybe it could work. The thing most annoying for me is having to peel/destroy the leatherette BEFORE you even begin to dissasemble anything. Who was the tortured mind to designed that !?
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Old 10-27-2018   #12
dxq.canada
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You can just unscrew the front lens cell first to get a better look at the blades.
Get some rubber object to get a better grip, then unscrew anti-clockwise.


If you actually want to get the shutter completely disassembled to get at the shutter blade mechanism, then you will need to take the front cover plate off. I never went that deep.

I had a couple of Autocords that I was able to remove the leatherette intact ... you just have to have slowly work it.
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Old 10-27-2018   #13
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... your Autocord is worth saving. It looks minty and probably has a working light meter.


Oh, important safety tip ... when not in use immediately move the focus lever to infinity.
This will prevent the Autocord film back from touching the handle when it flips forward.
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Old 10-27-2018   #14
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And the camera works fine without the leatherette on the front. It isn't needed for any function or keeping light out. Fix the camera, then you can source a replacement for the front leatherette down the road.
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Old 10-27-2018   #15
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Quote:
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And the camera works fine without the leatherette on the front. It isn't needed for any function or keeping light out. Fix the camera, then you can source a replacement for the front leatherette down the road.

Yes, I agree.

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