View Full Version : Sinar Auto-Shutter - Previewing Depth of Field

29-Sep-2003, 02:20
I've been using a Sinar Auto-Shutter with DB mounted lenses for the past several months. When using different DB mounted lenses on this shutter I understand that I would trip the shutter release cable in order to preview depth-of-field. However, in the past couple of shooting sessions, I've noted that the shutter isn't closing down very far. It seems to be sticking... the blades close down to resemble a starfish design.

Has anyone out there experienced this same problem? How did you resolve it? Did you have to send it in for repairs?

Thanks in advance for your comments.


James Driscoll
29-Sep-2003, 18:59
I used to work with them all the time...and here are the tips I learned from a Sinar Repairman.

The problem you are describing is a common one. The auto shutter is very fragile and most people do not know how to store them correctly. Most problems stem from that. The shutter is to be stored open on "8 sec" NOT B.

Logic states "B" would put the least pressure on the mechanism....but thats the Swiss for you!!!

Also, (not saying you did...but if you bought it used...) the shutter cannot be operated very fast. Fashion photographers love the auto shutter, but shooting BAM BAM BAM BAM, with the thing will make it break quickly. The aformentioned repair guy, told me to TRY (not always possible, but if it is used this way 80% of time your ok) to wait a little bit before tripping it again. It sounds crazy, but I have seen guys like Michael Thompson shoot with these things....and they are almost like motor drives!!!

The last two digits of the serial number are the date of manufacture (eg 91-is 1991, 87 is 1987, 01 is 2001 and so on) If your unit is over 5 years old, I would send it in to be tuned up.

Hope this helps

30-Sep-2003, 11:31
Hi James,

Thanks for your note...I did buy the unit brand new from a dealer down in Missourri.

I didn't realize that they recommended storing it in the fashion you mentioned. I'll have to give it a go and see if it magically "comes back" to life.

As for tripping the shutter in rapid succession... I haven't done that all that often either but, who knows? I did know that these things are ultra-finicky!

Again, thanks for your advice.


James Driscoll
30-Sep-2003, 15:56

These shutters are so finicky....I had THREE of them break on a shoot once. Of course they were rental units...but the odds of that happening with a between the lens shutter???

3-Oct-2003, 21:03
Hi James,

The old saying of, "Good Auto-shutters are so hard to find these days!"

I'm contemplating on getting rid of the thing and replacing the DB mount with the required Copal 3 but I know they're NOT inexpensive in the least! Anyway...may have to take the bullet considering I don't want to have to worry about whether it'll work or not.

Life in the fast lane...