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MichaelPRyan
29-Dec-2017, 19:16
Does anyone have any idea where I could get a replacement handle for a 5X7 Gundlach Manufacturing Corp. wooden field camera? The handle is 6-1/4" long and and the part that goes under the retaining hardware is 5/8". I can find trunk handles and the like that are very similar in shape but all are sadly, too long. Pic of old handle attached. I can't trust this. Thank you.

173168

LabRat
29-Dec-2017, 20:16
I don't trust old leather handles either, as I have seen leather just break clean easily... My rule "No leather straps"!!!!

But I needed one for a restoration of an RB series D Graflex, and got silly quotes from pro leatherworkers, some over $300, but found new shorter ones from guitar amp restoration for cheap... (mine needed a short 7 1/2" one)

But some leather guy told me just to get a thick piece of leather, soak it well, and cut out the "dogbone" shape... (the wetting makes for easy, precise cuts) A new pants belt can supply stock for this...

Steve K

Randy Moe
29-Dec-2017, 20:34
They ARE still made and work fine.

This source has almost what you want.

https://www.brettunsvillage.com/trunks/howto/parts/schandles/

https://www.brettunsvillage.com/trunks/howto/parts/handles/

There are others and a good belt maker can also do it.

Lachlan 717
29-Dec-2017, 23:01
Go to an Op shop/Good Will shop, buy an old brown leather belt.

Take the old one off, trace around it and use a box cutter to cut it out.

$2 fix.

I did this on my Korona 7x17". No issues with it and it weighs much more than your 5x7".

Michael Roberts
30-Dec-2017, 05:47
What Lachlan said, except I use a leather belt from Tandy Leather. This is a single (not layers or pieces that can separate), 5/32 in. thick leather strap.

Robert Brazile
31-Dec-2017, 06:44
As Randy suggested, I used Brettuns Village to rehandle my Kodak 2D. Specifically TH-16 from this page:

https://www.brettunsvillage.com/trunks/howto/parts/handles/

Here is the result:

https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7487/15123224024_d782e3c25f_z.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/p3otBN)
New handle (https://flic.kr/p/p3otBN) by Robert Brazile (https://www.flickr.com/photos/rbrazile/), on Flickr

Randy Moe
31-Dec-2017, 08:40
I can't believe some want to use an old belt when TH-16 is $10 delivered!

If we don't use these old-time businesses they disappear.

Focal Point just did.

David Karp
31-Dec-2017, 09:44
Robert,

Do you just screw into the wood? Or do you use a nut and bolt? Looks beautiful.

William Whitaker
31-Dec-2017, 09:59
What do people here recommend to replace the original rivets? I often see split rivets, but seriously question the security of those. It doesn't matter how stout or robust the handle itself is if it's not fastened securely to the camera.

I assume replacing a handle of this style means drilling out the old rivets and replacing them with some other kind of fastener. Machine screws work, but lack the finished look of the original.

Lachlan 717
31-Dec-2017, 10:29
I can't believe some want to use an old belt when TH-16 is $10 delivered!

Not to Australia, it isn't...

Jac@stafford.net
31-Dec-2017, 10:53
What do people here recommend to replace the original rivets?

I have gone through the same problem and solved it using 4 tiny three-barb T-Nuts (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T-nut). The nuts go under the top wood, with the barbs pressing up into the wood. Fastening the screws from the top seats the barbs securely. I did file the barbs and tube a bit shorter, even though it was not strictly necessary.

So, remove the original rivets (I clip them off with a wire cutter or Dremel wheel), remove handle and hold-downs. Drill the holes wide enough to fit the T-Nut's expression (tube), place T-nut, holding it in place with a finger, then insert the screw and screw it down gently, just enough to seat the nuts. Repeat for all four. Finally, remove the screws, install the leather strap in the hold-downs, place the screws back in (the T-nuts will not fall out), screw them all back down. Done almost as quickly as we can read this!

Best of luck!
Jac

LabRat
31-Dec-2017, 15:05
I have gone through the same problem and solved it using 4 tiny three-barb T-Nuts (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T-nut). The nuts go under the top wood, with the barbs pressing up into the wood. Fastening the screws from the top seats the barbs securely. I did file the barbs and tube a bit shorter, even though it was not strictly necessary.

So, remove the original rivets (I clip them off with a wire cutter or Dremel wheel), remove handle and hold-downs. Drill the holes wide enough to fit the T-Nut's expression (tube), place T-nut, holding it in place with a finger, then insert the screw and screw it down gently, just enough to seat the nuts. Repeat for all four. Finally, remove the screws, install the leather strap in the hold-downs, place the screws back in (the T-nuts will not fall out), screw them all back down. Done almost as quickly as we can read this!

Best of luck!
Jac

The T-nuts are an excellent replacement (thanks, Jac), if there were nuts inside previously, as we know there is limited space inside to get fingers and tools inside the body shell, but the T-nuts are a threaded, press in bolt hole that can even go inside a countersunk hole (if the smaller sizes are used) and fit flush (if the screw has been cut to fit flush)... A good source for these and other small parts are good hobby stores, as they usually have an entire rack with these and other small parts (esp suppliers for R/C air and train builders)... The smallest T-nut screw size I know of is SAE 2-56 which is strong enough to hold on handles to even heavy cameras if properly installed...

The retainers that hold the straps to the cameras are often in poor shape, rusted/rough metal with sharp edges or leather which has long dried up, but there is another solution... New replacement metal retainers will fit most all two hole mountings, as the standard has been around for over a hundred years, so a little searching will turn up replacements... (Luggage repair and guitar amp restoration suppliers will have many, but there's only a few standard sizes, but most mountings are to those standards...)

Most of the new retainers have a pin in the center going downwards, so a strap will also require a small slot on both ends, but easy to slot once the leather is wet and cut with a sharp blade, or with punched with a leather hole punch... Slotted is really a good thing as there is a little extra pivot action while using, and it's not just chewing on the end of the "dogbone", and there is an extra safety point to hold...

Again, I hate leather straps as good looking old straps have unexpectedly failed while right in my hand (or around my neck), but by dumb luck, I had the reflex to catch the falling item, but with weight bearing leather (that you didn't replace with a synthetic strap), they should replaced with a new/FRESH leather strap/handle every few to 10 years, to avoid that clean break without warning thing... ;-)

HNY

Steve K

Jac@stafford.net
31-Dec-2017, 16:18
Steve K. I think between the two of us we have a FAQ. It would help to have illustrations.
.

David Karp
31-Dec-2017, 16:21
Thanks guys. Very helpful.

Greg
31-Dec-2017, 16:54
Might I suggest 1 inch flat webbing that rock climbers use. Breaking strength is 4,200 pounds. Last time I bought some was 20 cents per foot or yard (can't remember which). Take a measured length webbing to a seamstress and ask her to loop the ends of the webbing and sew them with the strongest thread she that she has. Then take the metal brackets, thread them through the looped ends of the webbing and attach them to your camera. Webbing comes in many colors, I chose dark purple. When I was regularly rock climbing, I trusted my life to webbing many, many hundreds of times. Needless to say, holding a camera with webbing is a huge overkill... heck the brackets would surely break before the webbing was even stressed. Personally think it looks better than leather.

Jac@stafford.net
31-Dec-2017, 17:08
Might I suggest 1 inch flat webbing that rock climbers use. Breaking strength is 4,200 pounds

That's great, Greg, but the point of failure for our case is the attachment to the camera body.
.

LabRat
31-Dec-2017, 17:26
Might I suggest 1 inch flat webbing that rock climbers use. Breaking strength is 4,200 pounds. Last time I bought some was 20 cents per foot or yard (can't remember which). Take a measured length webbing to a seamstress and ask her to loop the ends of the webbing and sew them with the strongest thread she that she has. Then take the metal brackets, thread them through the looped ends of the webbing and attach them to your camera. Webbing comes in many colors, I chose dark purple. When I was regularly rock climbing, I trusted my life to webbing many, many hundreds of times. Needless to say, holding a camera with webbing is a huge overkill... heck the brackets would surely break before the webbing was even stressed. Personally think it looks better than leather.

Very good stuff!!! I used to get the narrow webbing material from a speed shop that was used for making harnesses/transport straps, and different ABS plastic slides/buckles from the Army/Navy store...

Cut with a hot knife, or quickly heat ends to prevent unraveling...

(Don't tell anyone, but I recently needed a short piece for a replacement SG leather user handle strap, couldn't find my roll of stock, but saw nice red webbing on the baby seat in shopping carts (at Costco), so out came the snipping pliers...) ;-0

I like it!!!

Steve K

MichaelPRyan
1-Jan-2018, 05:50
Thanks to everyone for the info! Thanks for the link Robert I had already ruled them out as the straps they sell, excellent at that, are just too long. I need 6-1/4" and their shortest is 7-1/2 or thereabouts. I have to be able to store mine flat to the top when not in use for storage. I'm not up to making one either, leather working isn't one of my specialties. So, I had a thought about a shoe repair person and theres a little Italian guy with a shop in town and I gave him the old handle and he said no problemo and I'll pick up the new one tomorrow. Funny when I handed him the handle not even telling him what it was for I asked him if he new how old it was. He looked for a second and said "about 100 years." I thought that was pretty cool. I'll post the final outcome.

Greg
1-Jan-2018, 07:52
That's great, Greg, but the point of failure for our case is the attachment to the camera body.
.

I had a similar situation with small wood screws failing and pulling out of hardwood. My solution was to remove the small wooden screws, drill slightly larger holes, and then slightly force thread small stainless steel bolts into the holes with just the slightest bit of Gorilla glue applied inside the water dampened holes. I first tried this on a piece of hardwood and let it dry for a day. When I very forcefully removed the bolt, it came out with some wood still attached to it indicating to me that the wood failed and not the bolt's ability to fasten into the wood.

Jac@stafford.net
1-Jan-2018, 09:54
I had a similar situation with small wood screws failing and pulling out of hardwood. My solution was to remove the small wooden screws, drill slightly larger holes, and then slightly force thread small stainless steel bolts into the holes with just the slightest bit of Gorilla glue applied inside the water dampened holes. I first tried this on a piece of hardwood and let it dry for a day. When I very forcefully removed the bolt, it came out with some wood still attached to it indicating to me that the wood failed and not the bolt's ability to fasten into the wood.

Picture the pronged T-nut solution - it does not depend upon screws threaded into wood, and the bearing surface is the head of the T-nut which has about four times the area of the post & screw. It is better than the old rivet build.

Lachlan 717
1-Jan-2018, 13:20
I had a similar situation with small wood screws failing and pulling out of hardwood. My solution was to remove the small wooden screws, drill slightly larger holes, and then slightly force thread small stainless steel bolts into the holes with just the slightest bit of Gorilla glue applied inside the water dampened holes. I first tried this on a piece of hardwood and let it dry for a day. When I very forcefully removed the bolt, it came out with some wood still attached to it indicating to me that the wood failed and not the bolt's ability to fasten into the wood.

A simple nut and washer on the inside of the frame would be stronger, as it distributes the load over a greater area than a bolt alone method. Use some Loktite and/or Nulok nuts if you're worried they'll come undone.

Also a heap easier than some convaluted T-Nut solution.

mdarnton
1-Jan-2018, 14:14
A good design doesn't always mean maximum strength--the consequences of failure need to be figured in, also. Here's a question---if your camera got hung up on something, would you rather simply rip off the handle, or tear the top piece of wood to bits?

Jac@stafford.net
1-Jan-2018, 14:57
A simple nut and washer on the inside of the frame would be stronger, as it distributes the load over a greater area than a bolt alone method. Use some Loktite and/or Nulok nuts if you're worried they'll come undone.

Also a heap easier than some convaluted T-Nut solution.

Convoluted? Were you paying attention? Do you even know what a pronged T-nut is? I think not. It's easier than nuts and washers. No nut or washer needed, and it requires less space under the wood frame. Learn up.

Jac@stafford.net
1-Jan-2018, 14:59
A good design doesn't always mean maximum strength--the consequences of failure need to be figured in, also. Here's a question---if your camera got hung up on something, would you rather simply rip off the handle, or tear the top piece of wood to bits?

I would put a buckle in the middle of the handle. :)

Lachlan 717
1-Jan-2018, 19:05
Convoluted? Were you paying attention? Do you even know what a pronged T-nut is? I think not. It's easier than nuts and washers. No nut or washer needed, and it requires less space under the wood frame. Learn up.

Wow, Jac, such vitriol when people don't agree with you. Sad, really...

First, with T-nuts, you need to drill a bigger hole than a regular nut'n'bolt set-up due to the T-nut's threaded tube design, thus compromising the timber's structural integrity. To what extent? Who knows, but why risk it, especially with decades old timber that might be somewhat brittle and/or have micro-cracks already.

Second, for the T-nut to work, you're driving its wedges into the timber to prevent the opposite directional torque when you tighten the screw through it. Again, your risking the integrity of the timber with this wedging.

Third, space is a moot point. There is a ton of room under the handle section between the timber and the bellows (bellows are tapered, not square). Additionally, the difference in thickness between the T-nut's ring and a washer/nut combination is 4mm (measuring the ones I have in my workshop). Note that this is using a Nulok nut. A "regular" nut would reduce this by approx. 2mm if you're happy to Epoxy the nut. If you're going to countersink them, you'll compromise the frame further.

Finally, aesthetically, I find T-nuts objectionable for finished timber. Poorly finished and zinc coated look way too agricultural for my tastes, especially on an old camera AND compared to (for example) brass fixings. Of course, and I predict that it will simply because I've written it, YKMV*.

*Metric version of YMMV.

LabRat
1-Jan-2018, 19:49
Allow me just to cut in to this part of the discussion, by making a blanket statement involving most tech, is "There is no one solution to a problem", meaning each problem has it's own needs (and might be several ways to skin that cat), so give it what it needs... Just don't overdo it, and try to make it reversible, so if it does not work out, no harm done...

Most stuff comes down to "you can do this, that, or that, but avoid doing this, etc... ;-)

Starting the year looking forward,

Steve K

Robert Brazile
2-Jan-2018, 10:10
Robert,

Do you just screw into the wood? Or do you use a nut and bolt? Looks beautiful.

After removing the split rivets, I replaced them with tiny brass nuts and bolts from McMaster-Carr. Works just fine.

Robert

MichaelPRyan
3-Jan-2018, 22:31
Well the shoe repair guy did a great job. Problem solved. Don’t know why I didn’t think of him initially.