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Tested a 3.5f and a 2.8GX today
Old 12-12-2017   #1
dd786
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Tested a 3.5f and a 2.8GX today

So, in anticipation of meeting a seller and testing his 2.8f before i buy it, i decided to find a store that had some and have a feel for things.
Found both a GX and 3.5F at a pretty repuitable store so popped in. The GX was the 60 year version with the gold top.

Anyway, noticed some obvious differences:

1) The GX focus was smooth and pretty easy to turn. The 3.5f was obviously harder to turn. Is this normal?

2) Similar issue/difference between the two models with the aperture and speed dials. The GX settings were easy to change and smooth and the 3.5f kind of difficult. Also the GX clicked at the different speeds and apertures but the 3.5f didnt. again, normal differences between the two models?
Strange thing is the guy at the store said that 3.5F had a 6 month warrenty and was CLAd as well...


Thoughts?
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Old 12-12-2017   #2
Robert Lai
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All motions on a Rolleiflex should be smooth and effortless.

CLA may mean nothing was done, except some money was stolen.
I've had "CLA'd" cameras that had fungus, corrosion, and old dirt and grease still inside them when I finally sent them to a reputable repairman to get them sorted out.
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Old 12-12-2017   #3
dd786
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...Harsh...
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Old 12-12-2017   #4
stompyq
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Who CLA'd it?
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Old 12-12-2017   #5
Godfrey
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I bet Harry Fleenor didn't do the service on the 3.5F.

Although similar looking, the 2.8GX and 3.5F are two entirely different cameras under the skin. The 3.5F chassis and mechanicals are the last of the "true" Rolleiflex cameras. The 2.8GX was built on the Rolleicord chassis, since by the time they were made the Rolleiflex dies and production machinery had been destroyed. The GX is, in essence, a lot simpler camera mechanically compared to the F. It would not surprise me if even new the two cameras had a different feel.

The 3.5F did not have click stops on the aperture; the shutter speed selector, at least at the shorter exposure times, did have detents but they weren't quite "click" stops.

(I had both 3.5F Whiteface with Schneider lens and 2.8F with Zeiss lens, once upon a time, amongst other Rolleiflexes. I think my all time favorite Rolleiflex, however, was ca1953 Rolleiflex MX-EVS with Zeiss Tessar f/3.5 lens and a Maxwell focusing screen. The friend in Japan that I sold that one to, probably 22 years ago or so, still uses it. I'd bought that one dirt cheap in the 1980s, had Harry overhaul it in '88 or '89, and had Bill Maxwell install his screen and decollimate the lens assembly for best focusing with it in '91. It was lighter and smaller than the Fs, used it with a hand-held meter, etc. Just a wonderful camera...)

G
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Old 12-12-2017   #6
dd786
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stompyq View Post
Who CLA'd it?
I have a feeling youre asking Robert. But, if you're asking me, i have no idea, the guy in the shop didn't say.
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Old 12-12-2017   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dd786 View Post
I have a feeling youre asking Robert. But, if you're asking me, i have no idea, the guy in the shop didn't say.
Actually asking both. Right now the only repair person that consistently comes up is Fleenor. Any other person is almost sub-par compared to him, which I think is a ridiculous assumption. I would rather know who the ones to avoid are.
In answer to you're question, Robert's right. That 2.8F was clearly not CLA'd or someone did a really bad job. Stay away from both cameras or at the least talk the seller down on the price and budget for a real CLA
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Old 12-12-2017   #8
Timmyjoe
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I've got a similar camera Godfrey, from 1954, with the Schneider lens, and the (Very dark) original focus screen. I find the original screen easier to focus on this camera than the Maxwell I had on a previous 2.8D, but others see it differently.

The 1954 camera came very cheap, and unfortunately had barely detectable fungus on both the taking and viewing lenses. I was able to clean all the fungus away, and the viewing lens is now pristine, as it had no coating, but the taking lens is not 100% because the fungus ate away at the coating.

These cameras have been around for a LONG TIME, and it's difficult to know the camera's history, so look one over very carefully before you put down your hard earned money.

Best,
-Tim
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Old 12-12-2017   #9
Robert Lai
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For Rolleiflexes, Harry Fleenor and Krikor Malarian (when he was still active) were excellent. I don't want to say bad things of others, but a lot of people think Rolleiflexes are simple to fix when they aren't. They then end up in the deep end of the pool, and realize they don't know how to swim. I then had to send to one of the above to fix the "fix".

My particularly bitter experience was with a midwestern "Nikon" repair specialist. When my Nikon F and F2 were finally sent to Sover Wong, the fungus, filth, dirt, and lack of lube were documented in his photographs as he dismantled them. The midwestern guys had actually had the gall to paste new foam strips on top of rotten old foam, without removing the rotten stuff first.
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Old 12-12-2017   #10
Huss
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I have a 3.5, a 2.8E and a 2.8GX.

They all are smooth and effortless to use. That 3.5F you checked is messed up.

Unless you have written proof of a CLA from a respected service shop, claiming it had a CLA means nothing. Akshully worse, because some just say that to lure a sale.

I've bought a Leica from rangefinderforum from a member that mentioned CLA w/o receipts backing that. When I received it there obviously was none done.
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Old 12-12-2017   #11
dd786
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Thanks guys. I guess i now how things should feel when i meet the seller i am hopefully buying from.
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Old 12-12-2017   #12
x-ray
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I just checked my 3.5F and 2.8D and there is a noticeable resistance in the shutter speeds as you change them due to cams changing in the shutter. Shutter speeds are set by a finger that rides on a circular cam. As you go up in speeds the cam is pushed up and you can feel that. Every Rolleiflex I've owned in the past fifty years has been that way. It's normal in Every compur shutter.

Smooth and effortless for the aperture but not for the shutter speeds. I wouldn't say the 3.5F is messed up, that's a pretty strong term and only one person here has touched it and he doesn't have enough experience to know what's normal or what's not. "Kind of difficult" is a very relative term. The GX is a totally different machine than the F. There's a lot more linkage between the shutter speeds and aperture in order to actuate the mechanical meter mechanism. The GX has an LED readout not match needles. I know from looking at the engineering drawings and opening mine up that the meter mechanism has a lot of linkage and is quite complex. Remember it uses slider bars and a differential planetary gear system to transfer that data. I don't believe that's present in the GX due to the all electronic meter. There's a noticeable difference in my D which has no meter therefore no mechanical linkage.

Also the D is easier to turn the focus knob. I've noticed this in ever F that I've owned.

If the camera has a 6 month warranty I'd feel pretty good about it. The dealer must have confidence that it's OK or they wouldn't stand behind it with a warranty. As to Fleenor, he's good but Rollei's aren't as complex as some want you to believe. The most difficult thing I found with reassembly of the F is getting the differential gear synced. These are not high tech machines and certainly not on the level of a mechanical wrist watch. There are plenty of people that can repair a Rollei. I used to use Jimmy Koh, now retired, to work on my SL66's which are the most complex mechanical camera I've ever seen.

The only repair service I'd say away from that I've had experience with is Camera Service Co. in Smyrna Ga. It's not that they couldn't do the work, they just didn't do it and said they did plus they charged way more than the service should have been that they did do and I had to send the camera back twice and they still didn't do things.

I have a couple of little things I don't want to tackle and will be sending my F to Paul Ebel. He's experience with Rollei and I've used him many times with Compur, Copal and Ilex Shutters.
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Old 12-12-2017   #13
Fixcinater
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Another +1 that the F cameras have a bit more resistance to their focus than the other models, that matches my experience.

Another one of the reasons some folks prefer the earlier models: cost, less stuff to go wrong and need repair, lighter weight, models C and prior have 10 blades in the aperture so circular "bokeh balls" AKA out of focus highlight points.
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Old 12-12-2017   #14
dd786
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Hmmm.
It did seem strange that he offered the warranty and mentioned the CLA.
Well anyway, there is so much in my head right now. Lets see. Ill report here once i get the camera and write about it and how it works etc.
As always, thank you Guys )
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Old 12-12-2017   #15
f16sunshine
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I linked Kohs ebay page to another thread you have up OP.
He has several different Rollei models for sale.
He serviced and warranties them.
Just sayin...
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Old 12-12-2017   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by f16sunshine View Post
I linked Kohs ebay page to another thread you have up OP.
He has several different Rollei models for sale.
He serviced and warranties them.
Just sayin...
Jimmy is really good. I hated to see him stop doing repairs. Jimmy was head of Bronco service and used to work on my SL66's. They were very durable but had a couple of repairs and he always did a perfect job.

Jimmy often has some really nice MX-EVS cameras at good prices. I had a nice MX-EVS in college and loved it.

I totally trust Jimm's work.
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Old 12-12-2017   #17
f16sunshine
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^^^
Hi Don, Over the summer you suggested Koh and I sent my friend the suggestion.
He bought a 2.8D from Kohscamera ebay store.
The price was right on target and the camera arrived operating smoothly. (unfortunately now it will likely sit more than expose film )
It's was apparent it had been serviced just as advertised.
Everything was spotless and the speeds were right on.

OP, one of the things to consider is the model.
The "F" models all bring in more money as there is more demand for them.
If you are looking for the best value, stay away from the F models.
On the other hand, the F model will also be easier to sell later if you don't get on with the camera....


Given the same lens formula and lens condition, One will not see a difference between the F and earlier models in image output.
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Old 12-28-2017   #18
Evanjoe610
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I can second the recommendation for Paul Ebel.

I used Jimmy Koh and Harry Fleenor.

Can anyone recommend someone who works on Rollei 6000 system?

I have two lenses that has HAZE in the front grouping.
Lenses are 60mm Distagon PQ & 120mm Macro Planar PQS.

If not, my only option would be to the last two German source.
Papeke & DHW Foto.
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Old 12-28-2017   #19
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If it's just a matter of cleaning glass Paul might do it. I'm not sure about the 6000 series whether special tools are required.

Thinking about it Zeiss USA MIGHT service them. You might also talk to Jimmy Koh and ask who he'd recommend. Jimmy used to service my SL66's and lenses but the lenses, not the bodies, are pretty straight forward. Flenor???no idea.

I can tell you who not to send it to. Camera Service Co in Smyrna Ga represents themselves as authorized Rollei service but I can say from experience they have no clue what they're doing.
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Old 12-28-2017   #20
Mark A. Fisher
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Several years ago I had Mark Hama redo a YashicaMat, and he did a fine job. Today I was talking with a friend of mine about having my Rolleiflex done as well, and he said Hama works on those too. I have no idea if that is true or not, just thought I'd pass it along.
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Old 12-28-2017   #21
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The problem with the 6000 series is they're all electronic. Back in the late &0's while they were still in production I had 2 Rollei 3003 35mm bodies. Fabulous concept but terrible execution. They were terribly undependable and Rollei USA had one guy that could repair them. His name was Carmen and with all the problems I had we got to know each other on a first name basis. Rollei even loaned me an additional body because one was in the shop all the time. They new I was using them professionally and gave me excellent service but the cameras and back didn't stand up under pro use.

Like the 3003 I'd imagine repairs require special tools and electronic test gear plus you'd have to have all the service manuals. Then if parts are required would anyone have parts.

It's really sad that Rollei bit the dirt. They made great equipment except the 35's.

You might call someone like B&H and ask if they have a source. It seems like I read the HY6 is in production which is a much more complex brother of the 6000 system. Sinar also sold it under their name and they might be able to put you onto a service person.

Edit:
Here's a list of service centers. Some are US and service 6000 series.

https://rolleiflex.us/pages/frontpage
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Old 12-28-2017   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark A. Fisher View Post
Several years ago I had Mark Hama redo a YashicaMat, and he did a fine job. Today I was talking with a friend of mine about having my Rolleiflex done as well, and he said Hama works on those too. I have no idea if that is true or not, just thought I'd pass it along.

I would only recommend Hama for Yashicamat work. He will take other work, but does not seem expert at that. I've had two non Yashicamat cameras returned in worse condition than when they were sent in.
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Old 12-29-2017   #23
Mark A. Fisher
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huss View Post
I would only recommend Hama for Yashicamat work. He will take other work, but does not seem expert at that. I've had two non Yashicamat cameras returned in worse condition than when they were sent in.
Thanks for this info. I had a Rolleiflex I had considered sending to him as well, but now I think I'll spend the extra $$$ and have Harry Fleenor take care of it. Hama did do great work on my YashicaMat though, I'd use him again for that.
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