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Drew Bedo
1-Apr-2017, 18:42
I have managed to break part of the retaining ring that holds the helical mount onto the camera body of my TravelWide. On my bench right now is a ~120 degree semicircle of 1/4" wide plastic with two screw holes broken out.

I am sure that this has happened before to some other TW user: Can it be fixed? If so, what is the best way?

Don't really want to send it all off to SK Grimes for a custom machined ring in Titanium.

DIY suggestions?

el french
1-Apr-2017, 20:42
What tools do you have? Plastic is quite easy to cut and shape with files.

p.s. If the plastic is ABS, then gluing it with acetone can be as strong as the original.

LabRat
2-Apr-2017, 00:46
Price the replacement part from TravelWide first... They might give you one at little to no charge...

If the part broke to begin with, there was a weakness or defect... Fixing the broken part should be a last ditch effort, as the repair might/might not hold, and you have to get it right the first time...

Steve K

Drew Bedo
2-Apr-2017, 11:47
Thank you Steve, sounds like good advice. My tool set rides in a nylon pouch on my belt labled "Leathgerman". The Wave model has two knife blades, file, saw, Philips and flat screw drivers can opener , finger nail sciczors and plyers.

I weas hoping for a fix that could be done with a hot glue gun or via 3D printing from an online shop.

plywood
10-Apr-2017, 13:23
Price the replacement part from TravelWide first... They might give you one at little to no charge...

If the part broke to begin with, there was a weakness or defect... Fixing the broken part should be a last ditch effort, as the repair might/might not hold, and you have to get it right the first time...

Steve K
Not sure Wanderlust is making parts. Ben Syverson has been very quite and hard to contact for quite a while so I would doubt that one could obtain any replacement parts. When I try to log onto their site I get a security warning so have not kept up with any progress he has made with continuing to make the TravelWide 90. I know that he did mention in the comments section of the Kickstarter page that in the future he may choose to make the retaining tabs out of aluminum, I would think a lot of those original tabs have broken off ears.

Leigh
10-Apr-2017, 16:06
...in the future he may choose to make the retaining tabs out of aluminum, I would think a lot of those original tabs have broken off ears.
Aluminum would certainly be a good choice.
Some aluminum alloys are almost as strong as steel, but still light weight.

- Leigh

Larry Gebhardt
14-Apr-2017, 05:06
You could certainly 3D print the part, but without a redesign I'm sure it will fail around the screw holes again. It looks like there's some room to make the screw holes a bit stronger by going thicker, though that may necessitate some longer screws.

How exactly did it fail?

Drew Bedo
14-Apr-2017, 12:24
While packing with other gear, the mounted lens and helical were compressed axially towards the film plane. The screw holes on one side were ripped out.

I would think that if this part were made from aluminum it wouls be an effective mod.

evites
13-Jul-2017, 21:14
I know it has been a few months, but I've just had the exact same thing happen, and for the exact same reason. That retaining ring is flimsy! Did you ever come up with a solution or are you dead in the water?

Drew Bedo
14-Jul-2017, 14:41
Back-burner now but on the to-do list. We went on vacation anyway and had a good time. Now facing other things . . .but its still a want-to-do project.

Steve Goldstein
15-Jul-2017, 04:05
I have the same problem and have sadly had the same result (silence) following several attempts to contact Ben through multiple channels.

evites
15-Jul-2017, 21:13
Well, I sent a quote request to SKGrimes. Maybe we'll get a group discount if we order 3 sets of flanges ;)

Drew Bedo
16-Jul-2017, 05:40
I would be interested in hearing about that quote.

Steve Goldstein
16-Jul-2017, 06:40
I would be interested in hearing about that quote.

+1

I am (relatively) local to SKG and will be retired in a couple of weeks, so I could bring my camera down there for Adam to figure out a robust fix.

Whir-Click
16-Jul-2017, 07:50
I would be interested too, depending on the price. My travelwide has not broken (yet), but I want to make provisions for the long haul. I love this little guy.

Corran
16-Jul-2017, 10:40
Tagging this thread. My TW has two broken screw holes as well, but on diagonal ends. It works fine with just the two other screws tightened.

I need to take it apart again and try just superglueing the holes. I believe they just cracked and did not actually break off.

evites
16-Jul-2017, 13:51
I'll let everyone know once I hear back. Maybe we aren't the first to request replacement parts, and they already have a blueprint on file? Fingers crossed

Steve Goldstein
16-Jul-2017, 14:15
I may have a file for 3D printing this part - ISTR that someone posted it somewhere, possibly APUG. I'll check when I'm back at my home computer. Maybe SKG could use this to extract dimensional info.

EDIT - I have .dxf drawings for the arc-shaped pieces as well as for a circular retaining ring but I can't vouch for their accuracy.

Drew Bedo
16-Jul-2017, 17:46
The part would probably be more robust if made from Aluminum or Brass rather than plastic.

Chauncey Walden
17-Jul-2017, 13:49
I would be in for one. I'm very careful with my TW and have it cased such that no pressure can be applied to the lens but it happens.

evites
18-Jul-2017, 06:24
I may have a file for 3D printing this part - ISTR that someone posted it somewhere, possibly APUG. I'll check when I'm back at my home computer. Maybe SKG could use this to extract dimensional info.

EDIT - I have .dxf drawings for the arc-shaped pieces as well as for a circular retaining ring but I can't vouch for their accuracy.

Could you share this file with me? SKG is requesting it.

Steve Goldstein
18-Jul-2017, 06:43
Can do. Sent you a PM about the logistics.

Drew Bedo
24-Jul-2017, 14:33
Has SK" Grimes made a quote on fabricating a retaining ring?

evites
24-Jul-2017, 17:10
Still waiting to hear. They have the DXF file, and according to USPS tracking, my Travelwide and it's broken pieces arrived in Woonsocket this morning. Should be hearing soon, I'll be sure to update as soon as I know anything.

Drew Bedo
10-Aug-2017, 06:04
Any update from S.K. Grimes?

evites
11-Aug-2017, 07:27
Still nothing. They emailed me yesterday, apologized for the delay. Something about outsourcing to a specific machine that is currently out of order. It could be awhile.

Drew Bedo
12-Aug-2017, 04:47
Please keep us up-dated oln this.

I have a TW with the same repair issue. I would guess that there are others out there too. No sense in sending it in if they are still working on a fix.

Cheers

Jac@stafford.net
16-Aug-2017, 14:42
Are we talking about a jam-nut or a lens flange? Chances are that TravelWide's part is standard and easily replaced with a steel part. If not a jam-nut or flange, then what is it, please? Any snapshots available?

If it is some unscheduled odd part, then Glen at http://www.glennview.com/ might help.

Jon Shiu
16-Aug-2017, 15:34
These parts mount to the inside of the camera with very small screws and the screw eyelets get broken when there's too much friction with the helical.
168554168555

Jac@stafford.net
16-Aug-2017, 15:38
These parts mount to the inside of the camera with very small screws and the screw eyes get broken when there's too much friction with the helical.
168554

Thank you, Jon. I had no idea. Crazy engineering. Certainly a metallic replacement is in order. They appear symmetric, so only one part duplicated is necessary - no?

Jon Shiu
16-Aug-2017, 15:46
Thank you, Jon. I had no idea. Crazy engineering. Certainly a metallic replacement is in order. They appear symmetric, so only one part duplicated is necessary - no?

yes, the two parts are same. I have to admit mine broke when I turned it too hard, so my bad.

Jac@stafford.net
16-Aug-2017, 15:53
yes, the two parts are same. I have to admit mine broke when I turned it too hard, so my bad.

Not your bad! The part was simply poorly engineered.
.

Drew Bedo
1-Sep-2017, 13:00
Any response from SKG on the cost a brass substitute ring segment?

I am sure that there are others with this problem out there.

evites
1-Sep-2017, 17:18
Still waiting to hear. It's been over a month.

Gary Deal
9-Sep-2017, 17:07
Still waiting to hear. It's been over a month.

Questions:

- Is this a common problem?

- are replacements not available from the manufacturer?

- How thick are those, and do they need to be that thickness in order to work properly?

- Still wondering what the SKG quote might end up being, and what material they intend to use for it.

Drew Bedo
12-Sep-2017, 16:20
In my opinion, this is a design deficiency in every TW camera. Most folks seem to be more carweful with their TW than I have been.

he TW was a Kickstarter project and I understand that there has not been a follow-up or second mfg run. No. there are no spare parts available. Check out the 250+pagrthreadontheKickStarter forum for the back-story

Not sure what "thick" means for this discussion. The walls of the screw holes are to thin . . .?

I would like to know the SKG price too. Then I'd like to know who they job it out to and contact them for a direct and lower quote.

mdm
12-Sep-2017, 16:33
What I did to fix mine was sandwich the part between 2 pieces of yupo cover stock (plastic paper) and glue it together including the little round bit from the screw holes. Then trim them up using a craft knife and redrill the holes when the glue was dry. It's worked well enough for me to use it for pinhole, which is what I want to use it for, and it can focus in and out too but I wont go there now. So there you have it, plastic fantastic.

Steven Tribe
13-Sep-2017, 03:39
I think the delay from Grimes is due to be there being no quick fix using the existing material/design. The whole unit needs to be remanufactured.

rfesk
13-Sep-2017, 16:42
My Travelwide is not broken but I am careful.

Since mine isn't broken I don't have the part to look at. But, looking at the photo it seems that it is simply a flat piece of plastic. If that is the case it seems that a duplicate made from a sheet of brass of the appropriate thickness would not be too difficult to make.

Gary Deal
14-Sep-2017, 01:02
well, yeah. When considering if/how I'm going to make a part the thickness of the material required is kind of important. How many to make also has a bearing on how it should be made - would I need to make three or a hundred?

Someone mentioned something about having a dxf file from somewhere, if someone has a small cnc mill and some experience getting from a dxf to the mill this should be fairly simple. Unfortunately, life hasn't panned out in a way for me to have such a mill, but I do have a couple of manufacturing options.

So, assuming that they can't be easily replaced through the manufacturer,

- Is this a common problem?

- How thick are those, and do they need to be that thickness in order to work properly? Would a thinner part do the job?

Drew Bedo
14-Sep-2017, 05:59
I need at least one part, but would commit to two depending on cost.

The early adopters got into the TW for $99. The follow-on buyers got in for $150. The camera cost me something <$200 (don't remember exactly) with shipping from someone who had bought two. This is not a premium/rare/collectable item so a sky-high custom part won't work for me.

But I do want to fix mine if possible.

Gary Deal
17-Sep-2017, 07:16
I understand. I have a pm off to the guy that said he had a dxf file, but no response yet.

Jon Shiu
17-Sep-2017, 08:36
I was able to get replacements of the broken pieces by leaving a comment in the Travelwide Kickstarter page. Not sure if that way is working anymore?

Jon

Drew Bedo
12-Oct-2017, 14:11
Update on SK Grimes quote?

plaubel
12-Oct-2017, 17:14
Wow, Drew is missing his TW since 6 month.
Magical dxf.files are on the way, SK Grimes is out since May, August?


Drilling and milling,

170831


lathing, boring,threading,

170832

170834

is possible with my machines.

If it is possible to redesign and to improve this parts given by the space inside of the camera, I could create some improved parts, probably out of aluminium, if SK Grimes doesn't jump in again, some day..

No files needed, I have to move the wheels and knobs of my machines by hand and by brain, but I need one complete system (TW body, helicoil or whatever is screwed in front of the body, broken parts inside of the body, screws) to have a look on the possibilities.
It will take two days to present a solution, or to give up :-)

Ritchie

Steven Tribe
13-Oct-2017, 00:11
Super!

It is obvious that a part of this dimension can only reliable in metal, rather than a strange combination of plastic and tiny metal add-ons.

plaubel
13-Oct-2017, 01:53
...

Drew Bedo
18-Oct-2017, 18:43
Well, I need the fix. How many others also need this repair? Can we do a group buy?

And most importantly .. .what will it cost ?

plaubel
19-Oct-2017, 01:14
Drew,
first I get some pictures from inner side of the TW, and some dimensions from measuring.
Next I get a complete camera and i will create some sets of these dubious parts out of aluminium.
I am now planning to create 20 sets of two parts.

You didn't have to order; I can see the need, and I will do the job.

I let you know when the camera arrives.
I want to start machining the parts within one week, and you can follow the whole process - I am planning to bring some pics to this thread.

Since nobody was aible to help the TW owners, my mainly interest is helping out, so costs of manpower will be as low as possible, obviously with a tendency to less or nearly zero.

Unfortunately the shipping costs for sending the camera straight over the ocean, forwards and backwards, isn't an attractive factor.
But what the hell.

We only have to split, to devide the shipping costs - everybody has to take part in giving back the shipping costs to the member which will send me his camera.
If this costs with insurance included would have, let's say 140$, deviding through 20 would mean seven dollar to each person.

In spite of adding costs of needed material plus shipping costs, we will arrive at costs you are willing to pay for.

This member and me, we spoke about some possibilities.
Our idea is holding flat the shipping costs in general.

I one case I would send back the complete parts together with the camera. .
He then would send the parts within USA, special thanks for this.

If it would be more attractive to send the ordered parts directly, I will send directly.
Probably this is more an alternative to european members.

Ritchie

plaubel
21-Oct-2017, 02:16
From now, things become more real - Monday one camera owner will definitely ship his camera set to me...

Drew Bedo
21-Oct-2017, 06:53
Even though I shoot LF I am not much of a high flyer these days. Before I jump into an international commitment, I have to know what the details are. I need this fix, but cannot commit without knowing what is involved.

plaubel
22-Oct-2017, 01:21
As said before, no commitment is necessary.

I just need this camera to tell about details.
From private discussion with the camera owner there seem to be some other relevant details.
Concerning the dimensions of new parts, how many space is given between back lens cell and camera body.
What's about focusing movements, are they involved, do they give trouble.
If there is less space, does simply copying the parts give enough rigidity.

In other words, which alternatives are given to improve the broken parts.

I'll let you know.

Corran
27-Oct-2017, 09:28
Hi folks,

My camera is now in Ritchie's hands in Germany. I sent him my TW hoping he might come up with a good solution for all of us. While initially it seemed like an imperfect solution to send my camera overseas, since I am able to distribute replacement parts over here cheaply I hope it will work out to benefit us all.

plaubel
27-Oct-2017, 16:19
Bryan, thanks for shipping your camera.

The TW herself looks and feels fine, but I immediatley understood the grande malheur in Drew's photo case.

The given place for screwing anything is nearly zero, the parts must break some day for sure.

My initially thoughts about improving couldn't be realised without drilling the camera body, but we can't drill everybodys TW.

I probably have to work with this tiny nuts instead, which seem to be melted into the inner side of the body , and I have to find a solution to get half a millimeter plus.
Really, it's a thing of half to one millimeters here.
I have another "first" idea, but instead of telling tales I want to try out first.

From today's night I am on a short trip to Hamburg, so Monday should be a good day to start with some measurements and with first lathe works.

Best,
Ritchie

welshruins
4-Nov-2017, 08:11
I also broke the collar on my travelwide - helicord too stiff no matter what the weather.
I stuck on a Mamiya (127mm) helicord from a Polaroid 600SE camera and then added a Fujinon-w 125mm lens.
The helicord fitted very well and it was glued on permanently with epoxy.
Focus and depth of field is close enough for my purposes.
The glue needs to be sanded down and made a little tidier but otherwise a very usable camera.

171559

plaubel
10-Nov-2017, 23:27
Sorry,
I have been offline for some days because of telephone trouble ( broken over-the- land-wire) following the last storm here.
Now I switched to a wireless www-system.
After cleaning my ground from fallen trees I can continue the project.

Ritchie

evites
15-Nov-2017, 08:41
Update on SK Grimes quote?

After more than three months, and radio silence for over a month, SK Grimes ultimately returned my Camera, no charge, no parts, no fix.
They said there was no cost effective way to fix it.
VERY disappointed.
Sad that such a small plastic ring is causing such despair.
Anybody have any other suggestions for a replacement 4x5 apparatus that is this lightweight, easy to use, and cost effective?
Probably not.

Corran
15-Nov-2017, 10:08
Read the last few posts and hang tight.

Bob Salomon
15-Nov-2017, 11:08
After more than three months, and radio silence for over a month, SK Grimes ultimately returned my Camera, no charge, no parts, no fix.
They said there was no cost effective way to fix it.
VERY disappointed.
Sad that such a small plastic ring is causing such despair.
Anybody have any other suggestions for a replacement 4x5 apparatus that is this lightweight, easy to use, and cost effective?
Probably not.

If your camera had been “cost effective” it, and all the others, wouldn’t have this defect. You would have to look for a properly designed and engineered model to find a cost effective one.

Randy Moe
15-Nov-2017, 12:24
If your camera had been “cost effective” it, and all the others, wouldn’t have this defect. You would have to look for a properly designed and engineered model to find a cost effective one.

I have to agree. I was an enthusiastic supporter of the 'makers' and went to their factory for early distribution.

As soon as I got it, I disassembled the biggest flaw. I realized many would break, if not ALL over time.

So I am very gentle with mine and use a very lightweight lens, Wollensak WA 3-1/2" f6.8 in Rapax.

I don't use it a lot, but just now it was the only camera I could reach without getting out of my chair.

Few Travelwide will survive decades. It was the cheapest new 4X5. So we bought it.

I doubt any would break if solely used as a pinhole camera.

plywood
15-Nov-2017, 20:13
Few Travelwide will survive decades. It was the cheapest new 4X5. So we bought it.

I doubt any would break if solely used as a pinhole camera.

That is what mine ended up as. Ultra light weight but since I had enlarged the hole in the 65mm plate for a M42 mount helical I couldn't use their included pinhole so I jury rigged my own. The helical had a too narrow opening to field the full light cone from the 90 Angulon and it wound up in another project. I've retextured the plastic GG and it has served me well on other u-build projects. Removed the fussy to load metal spring back and use my own design. Looks cobbled up but works great and is secure and easy to flip and change film holders.
So, all in all, I've used many of the parts that came with it. Unlike yours mine had hard focusing right from the start and finally became unusable.

plaubel
16-Nov-2017, 02:48
They said there was no cost effective way to fix it.


From the view of a company like SK Grimes, they are totally right and I didn't expect others.
The main problem for repairing is not the task herself. It's the base, the camera body, who makes things difficult.
The given space for trying to make something better than original is approx. zero.
On the other hand, doing the same like the "engineer" of this camera would be worthless.


At the end of this week I probably present my solution.

I tend to cover the original parts with cone aluminium parts to get half a millimeter to one millimeter more space for the screw borings.
After doing the repair, the weakest area then will be the original nuts of the camera, but we didn't hear about any problems with this area, and my solution will not change anything there.
If not overtightened by the customer, this seems to work fine then.

Ritchie

plaubel
4-Dec-2017, 12:55
Sorry - for some reasons, I am late.
Last days I made a CLA to my machines.
Today i started with some measurements for creating new stuff out of aluminium.

Steven Tribe
4-Dec-2017, 13:49
Good luck!

The attachments don't work, though!

plaubel
4-Dec-2017, 14:47
Thanks, Steve,

I made some new adjustments to the pics , I hope this will work now..
Ritchie

Robert Brazile
4-Dec-2017, 16:13
The attachments work now, thanks.

plaubel
5-Dec-2017, 15:02
Thanks, Robert.

Today I rounded some "layaround"-metal with my Boley 4L; I wanted to find out how many space is given between camera body(inside) and the later new part.
Measuring only gave me no parameters for sure.

172641
172642
172643

Unfortunately there is absolutely no useful space.
Here's a tiny nut melted to the body (inside), with a thread of around 1mm:

172644

plaubel
5-Dec-2017, 15:18
The TW guys wided the body a bit, for giving space to the Mickeymouse ears of the broken part:
172645

Here you can see the body with my metal ring inside;
172646

Crazy.
No space.
Body with original part:
172647

Body, metal ring, original part:
172648

My initially idea, either to cover both the broken parts with an aluminium ring, or to build a bigger sized aluminium ring, will not work.

The last thing what I wanted to do is simply copying the original part ( and having way more difficulties and time issues in doing the job), but I haven't other ideas at this moment.
The given situation is everything but perfect :-)

So I prepared my mill for tomorrows making a copy out of aluminium.
This way I will get an idea if the copy would be good enough for longtime-fixing the helicoil of the TW.
See you,
Ritchie

Steven Tribe
6-Dec-2017, 01:54
Thanks for the illustrations. It makes the dificulty of doing a repair/improvement very clear!

plaubel
6-Dec-2017, 02:15
I would drill new holes to my own TW body, or milling the body a bit wider - one millimeter each side would be useful.
But this is no solution for an "easy-install"-repair kit.

Fortunately, the original srews are tiny, and they don't require much force for fixing the helicoil, so a copy of aluminium should work fine.
But as a mechanic, this "wrong way"-solution doesn't feel good to me.
But who cares about my feelings while shooting with the TW :-)

Ritchie

Havoc
7-Dec-2017, 06:35
If this is a flat piece (could be made out of plate) and you have a dxf file, then why not ask someone with a lasercutter or waterjet cutter? Could be a cheap and fast way to have small batch made. Certainly if the holes are the same size or larger than the thickness. If you go metal then maybe it could be made thinner to arrive at that condition. Then inox might even be the cheapest option. (steel is cheaper but will need work or it rusts)

plaubel
7-Dec-2017, 08:27
Creating a dsx.file for making a little series requires wellknown dimensions.
This plastic pieces are somehow wobbling, the holes are broken.
Measuring became hard and unprecise.
For this task and concerning the tiny dimensions of the holes lasercuttung would not be my first idea.

Havoc
7-Dec-2017, 13:38
OK, no problem. I don't have a travelwide so it is hard to have an idea how large the pieces are from a photo without references. But I regulary have steel parts laser cut for hobby use and this is surprisingly affordable IF you can find a willing supplier.

If the holes are so fine (from what I understand about 1mm) then "wire cutting" would be a good way to make them. Not as cheap as laser cutting but still affordable. Try to find a toolmaker, someone that makes injection dies for plastic or so. Sadly I don't have relations in that world anymore.

But I think that waterjet cutting might be possible. If you have a .dxf, send it on (PM) I could ask my supplier. If you have a sketch with dimensions then I can make a .dxf if needed.

Randy Moe
7-Dec-2017, 14:24
Do we have a count on how many want a repair?

Perhaps a Poll?

Bob Salomon
7-Dec-2017, 14:33
A better question would be how many were produced and how many need repair?

Steve Goldstein
7-Dec-2017, 15:40
There were 1026 backers, so the total number of cameras produced was around this. Of these, it looks like 237 were shipped in the 65mm fixed-focus configuration, so that means around 800 cameras have the focusing helicoid. I think it's safe to say that all of the 90mm versions need (or will eventually need) repair.

Another interesting question is how many of these are being used. Mine isn't - it needs this repair :(

evites
8-Dec-2017, 05:27
I’m in on any fix anyone can come up with

Drew Bedo
11-Dec-2017, 05:34
I need a fix for my TravelWide.

The total production was something like 2,500 I think. Maybe only 2K, don't remember exactly.

Don't know the nuts and bolts of this stuff, but I understood that commercial shops can now make parts in metals like Aluminum, Brass and Stainless Steel. Could the parts can be prototyped in plastic, then done in in metal?


I have been away a bit. Read the last two pages and I am not sure that I understand: Will the machined ring approach work? Or is the 3D printed method the way to go?

plaubel
11-Dec-2017, 09:15
Drew, the machined ring will work fine.
If you have time to wait two or three days, I should be over the mountain and being able to present the result.
A printed method only would repeat your problems, we really need more rigid stuff.

Best,Ritchie