View Full Version : Dim Kalart RF spot: inelegant, effective solution

john wilton
18-Aug-2008, 11:09
Lucky new owner of my first press camera, a Pacemaker Crown Graphic 4x5 with side-mounted Kalart. What a beautiful machine. Only issue is a VERY dim rangefinder spot. Unusable, even with an (included) filter onr the field (eyepiece end) window. Spent the evening researching this; I'm afraid getting a piece of semisilvered mirror from Edmund, cutting it; removing old mirror and installing new might be beyond me...there was one horror story of difficulty removing old mirror and stripping threads. But I stumbled on something that made the unusable usable: when a fingertip obscured the field window, it actually became usable as a split image rangefinder...one could see the otherwise very faint spot. So with a bit of masking tape covering the top half of the field window, and a bit of ND gel so it doesn't overwhelm the spot quite as much, I can try out the camera, see if it works for me and contemplate a more permanent solution.

Glenn Thoreson
18-Aug-2008, 20:18
Taping over half the window is an old temporary remedy. On some of them, I find the red window out of an old Kodak folding camera helps a lot. Just the right size to fit the window. Replacing the beam splitter mirror is not all that difficult, if you have a piece the right thickness. You have to break the old one and chip the pieces out of the mount. Then you can glue (epoxy) the new one in. It must be aligned properly to work right. In other words, standing straight up in it's mount.