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Thread: Sometimes fine German engineering is too fine? Had to take a rasp to my Linhof...

  1. #1
    Corran's Avatar
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    Sometimes fine German engineering is too fine? Had to take a rasp to my Linhof...

    After taking delivery of a mint-condition Linhof Master Technika, I was dismayed to find that out of the 50 sheets of film I shot over the course of several days, many were fogged pretty badly near the bottom of the image.

    Long story short, I figured out that the film holders weren't seating right. They were about 2-3mm away from being all the way in. It was such a small difference I did not notice the problem. But my Tech IV did not exhibit this issue. It appears that the tolerances were so tight that the bottom of the GG panel was causing the holders to hitch.

    I grabbed a rasp and took off maybe .001" of material. Just the paint really. Voilą, the film holder slides right in with no problem.

    Is this a common issue? Just curious. I didn't want to do it but realistically, I didn't hurt anything except maybe some resale value at worst.

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  2. #2

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    Re: Sometimes fine German engineering is too fine? Had to take a rasp to my Linhof...

    I'm not sure if i had the same issue like you Corran. But i had leaks on top right and bottom left in my negatives from my 8x10 KMV test shots. I had problem putting the holder when i tested it but when i shoot it with a tripod putting the holder is a breeze i didn't checked if it really seats properly at the back. I will have to look again next time i shoot. I'm suspecting my DIY lensboard is one of the culprit of the leaks but now i saw your post i should check the film holder properly when shooting. Not a German camera but thanks for reminding me.

  3. #3

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    Re: Sometimes fine German engineering is too fine? Had to take a rasp to my Linhof...

    This is a common issue with later Fidelity and Lisco holders. The bottom edge of some of these holders is rather sharp and somewhat rough and that prevents them from seating all the way in a late model Linhof. The cure is to simply insert the holders about a dozen times and that rough edge wears down. We had complained about this several times to the holder factory in Hollywood and even visited them a couple of times over this problem but they felt that they did not want to spend the money to tune-up their molds for the holder bodies.

  4. #4
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: Sometimes fine German engineering is too fine? Had to take a rasp to my Linhof...

    Thanks for the info Bob! I kinda figured the film holders were part of the problem as well, as I indeed have Fidelity holders.
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  5. #5
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Sometimes fine German engineering is too fine? Had to take a rasp to my Linhof...

    I have not had the problem with the two Technikas I use, and my holders are worn enough that they seat very nicely.

    For resale, presuming there is no degradation of function, just touch them up with a paint-pen.

    Glad it worked out for you.

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