View Full Version : Korona view bellows

Simon Parsons
7-Apr-2005, 20:10
I have a 5x7 Korona view that I am about to clean up and use. The bellows appears to be in good condition but the outside is dusty and discolored. I have used a damp cloth to remove much of the surface dust/discoloration but now the bellows looks dull and dried out. Is there anything that can be done to rejuvenate the bellows and also to make it look more attractive. The bellows appears to be made of some kind of coated fabric which I would judge to be original.

Steve Hamley
7-Apr-2005, 20:36

Try Doc bailey's Leather Black, a Canadian product IIRC. I've used to help coppery-colored black leather bellows, but I don't see why it wouldn't work on the "rubberized fabric" or even regular bellows fabric for that matter. The other usual suspects are the Armor All type protectants.


Brian Ellis
8-Apr-2005, 05:38
What you put on the bellows depends on the material. If it's leather any good leather treatment such as one made for leather auto upholstery (e.g. Hide Food) should work. If it's vinyl Armorall should spruce it up and maybe even prolong its life. I've read that Armorall can damage the threads in bellows but I don't see any threads in mine so I've used it without any apparent problems. If it's some other material, e.g. the naugehyde (sp?) that Deardorff used for some of its bellows, then I don't know.

8-Apr-2005, 08:11
This has been addressed a few times on this forum, and a lot of helpful answers have been provided, but one that I have used on several different cameras and seems to work very well is mink oil. The kind you find with the shoe polishes. I currently have an Ansco that was very dry and brittle, but no leaks. A good liberal application of mink oil, rubbed in by hand (for the heat) softened them up nicely without causing them to lose their shape. I had used it on an old Korona 5x7 (ca. late 1800's) and it brought out the deep red colouring nicely as well as cleaning and softening them. I got started using mink oil when restoring old saddles. NOT neatsfoot oil. Mink oil. Armor-all products are ok in your car, but tend to dry the bellows badly, as well as getting "gummy" feeling.

8-Apr-2005, 08:50
Try using a product used to restore rubber seals and typewriter plattens called "Rubber Renew" - it comes in a red can and is for synthetic materials. Also Meguires automotive polishes makes a very fine product for rubber bumpers and is sold at quality auto detail shops and accessory shops - it's basically pure silicon ++. I have used these products and have restored scores of Speed Graphic bellows with these products.

Matt Mengel
8-Apr-2005, 12:20
Stay away from Armor All- if you use it sparingly on something you will sell in three years like your car, it's a wonderfull product. If you plan on keeping the item for a long period of time the rubber/leather/etc.... will shrink and get hard. Not good for a bellows or a 1970 BSA seat. I've seen it-it aint pretty.

Simon Parsons
8-Apr-2005, 16:02
Thanks for all your advice. I will have to determine exactly what this bellows is made of before I proceed, but now I have a whole range of options.

Thanks again,