Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

  1. #1

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Kansas City, MO
    Posts
    31

    Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    I have a Crown Graphic with a damaged body, but the bellows and inner workings are in good shape. I found a Crown Graphic body only on eBay. Any tips on how to remove the bellows from the old body? I don't see any screws or clips. Are they glued to the frame? Am I missing something? Thanks for any help!

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Del City, OK
    Posts
    84

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    I have an Anniversary Speed Graphic that I just replaced the bellows on. From what I remember, the Crown graphics should have 8 screws just behind the front standard that connect bellows to the camera there. You'll have to access them from the inside of the bellows and they can be hidden behind the folds. Or maybe they're on the outside on the Crown Graphics. I don't remember. There should be a small piece of metal that the front of the bellow are glued to. Leave that alone. Just rescrew that plate to the new camera body, and don't worry about gluing or ungluing that part. Then there should be some clips on the back that hold the aluminum frame of the back that the rear of the bellows are glued to. You'll have to remove the back of the camera to see all of that. On mine, I didn't have the clips or aluminum frame on the back. I had a wooden frame that the bellows were glued to and tacked with tiny tacks. In my case, I had to buy a tack remover, and remove each tack and save them (cause it's hard to find tacks that small). Then I cut out the old bellows and scraped away any remnants. You could probably use a solvent if yours are glued in like this. Maybe start off with rubbing alcohol, and if that doesn't work, try acetone (which will eat most paint and plastic). Then you just reglue the bellows to the new camera with some contact cement and reuse the old tacks to keep it in place.

    There are some sites out there with various pictures and step by step instructions, though nothing that's fully comprehensive. Do a search for "Graflex Bellows Replacement" and you'll find a few sites with some more information on all of this. Here's a link for one of the pages:
    https://graflex.org/helpboard/viewto...68a684ac21daec

  3. #3

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Kansas City, MO
    Posts
    31

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    Thanks for the reply and info. I think I'll just have to remove the focusing rails and front standard parts from the old body. So removing the front of the bellows won't be necessary. The back of the camera is just a metal plate that appears to be glued to the wood body. I may just have to loosen or cut the bellows from the back.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Kansas City, MO
    Posts
    31

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    Actually, I just checked out your link and it was very helpful. I did finally find the tabs for the back of the bellows. Chalk it up to my eroding eyesight and not knowing what to look for...

    Thanks again!.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Montana
    Posts
    102

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    If it's a Pacemaker Crown, there are two ways the bellows were attached...the earlier ones (late '40s-early '50s) had a metal frame in the back of the bellows that supported it. The metal frame had tabs that were bent over the back plate of the camera...these are kind of a pain to deal with lol. You have to be pretty careful bending them slightly and pushing them toward the center of the camera to get them to unhook. Installation is the reverse, but you have to crimp them (very slightly) to make sure they don't come undone. In the early '50s Graflex switched to a simple clip-in system, which only takes a second to remove. Just remove the back from the camera, put a very thin screwdriver under the clips, and pop them out. Then just push the retaining tabs just slightly and it will come out. Be aware that the cable release for the front shutter will still be threaded under the bellows and still attached, so it won't slide off the rails just yet. There are two screws that attach the release bracket to the body...remove those, and unhook the cable from its pin and the bellows/front standard will slide out of the camera. I work on these all the time...the clip in style only takes a few minutes, but the crimp in type is...less fun lol.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    178

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    Just to add to what toolbox says: The clip on bellows are easier, but I have found that the other kind is not too bad. I just replaced the old kind on a Speed Graphic with bellows of the new kind that I had on a parts camera. The metal frame at the back end of the bellows is fairly easy to bend, both deliberately and by accident. If you bend it by accident while uncrimping, you can bend it back deliberately! But the less you bend them while removing them (both the little bits that need to be crimped at the corners and the rectangular frame itself), the easier it is to crimp them when putting them on. I am usually able to simply crimp them back on by pushing against the metal bit with the tip of a screwdriver.

    I had not done this repair in a year or so (I also have worked on a lot of these). I had forgotten just how easy these are, at least in comparison to bellows on some other old cameras. But it was way more difficult when I had to just figure it out on my own, before the invention of the internet. I was really worried I would ruin something.

    Of course, having done it many times now, I find it easy. I know that others may not.

  7. #7
    Muttley
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Minneapolis, Minn
    Posts
    36

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    Hello all. I have a Super Graphic that has the bellows vinyl cover seam underneath that is delaminating. I read the links on Graflex.org and was left wondering if it is better/easier to reglue that seam or tape it with film holder hinge tap. I don't want to remove the bellows if I don't have to. The tape I used for my holder hinges is the cloth book tape. It is durable and seems like the best choice if that will work?

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    178

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    I have just re-glued the seams of bellows on Graphic cameras with rubber cement, applied with a tooth pick. I put it on, squeeze the seam together, then pull it apart so that there's cement on both sides, leave it for a couple of minutes, and then match it together again It holds together better after doing this). The nice thing about rubber cement is that it can be pulled apart if necessary to re-seat it. It can also be easily removed if there's over-spill by simply rolling it off with your fingertips once it's dried a bit.

    Since this seam is not going to get pulled on or apart with any great stress, the glue doesn't need to be super strong; just enough to hold together to keep the light out. And since Graphic bellows are double-thickness (a rubber-coated outer layer, and a cloth inner layer), even that is not as big an issue as with some bellows.

    It is much easier to re-glue the seam with the bellows off the camera, but can be done with them on it.

  9. #9
    Muttley
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Minneapolis, Minn
    Posts
    36

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Kinzer View Post
    I have just re-glued the seams of bellows on Graphic cameras with rubber cement, applied with a tooth pick. I put it on, squeeze the seam together, then pull it apart so that there's cement on both sides, leave it for a couple of minutes, and then match it together again It holds together better after doing this). The nice thing about rubber cement is that it can be pulled apart if necessary to re-seat it. It can also be easily removed if there's over-spill by simply rolling it off with your fingertips once it's dried a bit.

    Since this seam is not going to get pulled on or apart with any great stress, the glue doesn't need to be super strong; just enough to hold together to keep the light out. And since Graphic bellows are double-thickness (a rubber-coated outer layer, and a cloth inner layer), even that is not as big an issue as with some bellows.

    It is much easier to re-glue the seam with the bellows off the camera, but can be done with them on it.
    Paul,
    Ok, thanks a lot for the info. I will give it a shot. If I cannot get the job done at least I can do the remove with the info gleaned here.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    178

    Re: Bellows Removal from Crown Graphic

    Be careful of one more thing: Between the two layers of material are strips of cardboard to provide structure and rigidity to the pleats in the bellows. They can come loose and need to be placed correctly before sealing. Loose strips are one reason why sealing wih the bellows off is easier.

    Good Luck!

Similar Threads

  1. Bellows for Crown Graphic
    By cluttered in forum Cameras & Camera Accessories
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 23-Feb-2015, 01:31
  2. Crown Graphic bellows
    By VPooler in forum LF DIY (Do It Yourself)
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 15-Aug-2013, 22:39
  3. Crown Graphic - removing bellows
    By Anthony Williams in forum Cameras & Camera Accessories
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 14-Mar-2000, 23:02

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •