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Thread: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

  1. #1
    Eric Woodbury
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
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    1,401

    Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    I bought a 2D maybe 15 years ago now. I bought it mostly because it looked cool and it came in a nifty box. Only paid $125. I've used it for only one serious photo in all those years. Sometimes I think it has a light leak, but I can find it. Bellows is like new and it passes the lightbulb inside test. Now, I've decided to put it in action for a portrait project I want to do. I'd like to get it fully functional and need all the little tips I can get.

    The finish is pretty good, original. I don't need it to look new and shiny, so I think I'll leave that alone. It was interesting to watch the youtube videos of 2D restorations.

    I have the rear rail and it works fine, as does the front. No chips or breaks. Standards are a little wobbly, but mostly at the short block in the middle and once the standards are on the extensions it is tighter. I'd like to add fluid levels for better tilt correction to the standards, but is this tacky? I see the antique road show all the time and they insist things be unmodified for most value, but truth be told, I want the most function, not resale value. Also along this vein, I'd like to add a second tripod hole to the tripod block. My tripod head has two screws and two is better than one with such a big camera. Is this an issue?

    The clamp on the block is stuck. I've added some oil to this to help break it free. I'll put the heatgun on it later to see if that helps. If I put some kind of impact wrench on it, will that shear the brass rod?

    The gear that adjusts the rear swing is not installed. I have the gear and the little clamp that holds it in place. Is assembly of this a trouble?

    Some of the screws holding the rear standard to the brass travellers are backing out. This adds to the rear standard not being very stable. I will tighten these. Are they going to be stripped? The screws seem small for the job at hand.

    What is the number debossed into the wood block at the rear? Mine reads "95".

    The ground glass back is a little loose in the Z-axis (lens axis) and a little in the X-axis (right/left). Worst in the Y-axis. Is there some way to tighten this or should I learn to live with it? I have a complete wood shop and access to machine shop, if needed.

    I'm sure I've missed some things, but I will add as we go. Thanks in advance for all insight and kind help. Happy shooting.

    --EW--
    my picture blog
    ejwoodbury.blogspot.com

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Woodbury View Post
    I have the rear rail and it works fine, as does the front. No chips or breaks. Standards are a little wobbly, but mostly at the short block in the middle and once the standards are on the extensions it is tighter. I'd like to add fluid levels for better tilt correction to the standards, but is this tacky? I see the antique road show all the time and they insist things be unmodified for most value, but truth be told, I want the most function, not resale value. Also along this vein, I'd like to add a second tripod hole to the tripod block. My tripod head has two screws and two is better than one with such a big camera. Is this an issue?
    You can add what you want to make it functional for you, since you're looking for function and not resale as an antique, if that means adding fluid levels go for it.
    Adding another tripod hole is only going to make a large cumbersome camera even more so, but if the bottom block is in good shape and you want to fiddle
    with two tripod sockets then I see no reason for you not to.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Woodbury View Post
    The clamp on the block is stuck. I've added some oil to this to help break it free. I'll put the heatgun on it later to see if that helps. If I put some kind of impact wrench on it, will that shear the brass rod?
    Impact wrench is not a good idea, use penetrating oil, some heat, and patience, most likely there's some corrosion holding the thumb nut onto the shaft,
    if memory serves correct the shaft that closes the brass fingers is steel.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Woodbury View Post
    The gear that adjusts the rear swing is not installed. I have the gear and the little clamp that holds it in place. Is assembly of this a trouble?
    You'll need to dismantle the rear standard to get that gear back in, providing the teeth that the gear engages isn't stripped which happens, the tilt gets stripped too .

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Woodbury View Post
    Some of the screws holding the rear standard to the brass travellers are backing out. This adds to the rear standard not being very stable. I will tighten these. Are they going to be stripped? The screws seem small for the job at hand.
    The threads on those old brass screws are much more robust than modern day replacements, more likely the brass has reacted with the wood and "eaten" away the
    threads the screw formed in the wood. I've worked on mine where there was nothing holding the screw in but verdigris.
    A sliver of wood like a toothpick and glue would fix tightening the screws, there are also wood putties that can be used too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Woodbury View Post
    What is the number debossed into the wood block at the rear? Mine reads "95".
    The number on the block are for matching the the rear extension rail, if yours has 95 on the rail then consider yourself lucky.


    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Woodbury View Post
    The ground glass back is a little loose in the Z-axis (lens axis) and a little in the X-axis (right/left). Worst in the Y-axis. Is there some way to tighten this or should I learn to live with it? I have a complete wood shop and access to machine shop, if needed.
    This gets more involved, unless the GG back is so loosey goosey that you're getting light leaks I'd leave it.

  3. #3

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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    Sometimes light leaks are at an angle, that you might not see straight on, but at some crazy angle... (Sometimes bellows corners are like that, too...) Like a slot effect, etc...

    That sometimes explains why a light leak might fog sometimes, but sometimes not (depending on the angle of the light that finds the leak)... Sometimes...

    Steve K

  4. #4
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    How is the back held in place? Little brass pins that connect with brass tabs? I'd check those, though the wood could have shrunk also.

    Pictures??

  5. #5

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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    ic-racer brought up a good point, if you're talking about the back and not just the sprung gg frame
    check the pins and the tab holes for the pins, the holes in the tabs may be worn oval and the pins may
    have a notch worn in them, both are easy to replace if they're the source of the slop.

  6. #6
    Eric Woodbury
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    Dec 2003
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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    Thanks all. Brilliant.

    OK, I oiled the tripod block knob and was threatening with the heat gun this morning and it came right off. Disassembled tripod block while I was in the neighborhood to re-glue the crossgrain endcaps, which were both loose. This revealed the anti-rotation pin to be a small nail and not brass.

    The pins and clips that retain the back are still fine with only a little wear. Back is probably fine and if it gives me issues, then I may fill gaps with felt or wood at later date. I need to measure ground glass distance to confirm same as holder. Rear extension has a different number than does the camera, but it fits fine. And the serial number, 160361, puts this unit at 1928. The clips that retain the ground glass don't match. 3 aluminum and one brass. The aluminum ones appear to be hand cut, but they work so they can stay. Noticed three little holes in the top of the rear standard where someone must have had a bull's eye level. It wasn't there long, if that's what it was, as there is no mark or change in stain. The rear swing knob...I looked inside the hole where it goes. There is no rack for a mate. Not sure how that all worked, but I see no reason to disassemble and install the pinion gear if there is no rack. I can swing manually.

    I checked some of my lenses for 5x7 to see what covers. Looks as though the 450, 360, 300mm of course. Fuji 240A covers at f/22. Didn't check quality at corners. 210mm f/5.6 Caltar 2N sorta covers, but not really. No movement for sure. Found what I hope is a nice older Fuji 210 f/5.6 S W coming from Japan in a week.

    Photos will be here soon.

    --EW--
    my picture blog
    ejwoodbury.blogspot.com

  7. #7

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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Woodbury View Post
    The rear swing knob...I looked inside the hole where it goes. There is no rack for a mate. Not sure how that all worked, but I see no reason to disassemble and install the pinion gear if there is no rack. I can swing manually.
    The rack is a brass plate, with the rack teeth stamped in a arc, if you cant see any teeth then it's stripped or the plate is missing, since the gear teeth are steel
    the stamped brass rack doesn't have a chance if the swing is locked and you crank on the geared knob.

  8. #8
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    Re: OEM Parts

    Incomplete cameras come up pretty often on The-Bay. Shouldn't be too hard to come up with OEM hardware to bring your camera up to as manufactured condition.

    You have the extension rail which is great. Hope you also have the sliding tripod block too. Its a real help in balancing the rig .
    Drew Bedo
    www.quietlightphoto.com
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  9. #9

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    Re: Tuning up the old Kodak 2-D 8x10

    "The clamp on the block is stuck. I've added some oil to this to help break it free. I'll put the heatgun on it later to see if that helps. If I put some kind of impact wrench on it, will that shear the brass rod?"

    I've found that Kroil is an amazingly effective penetrate.
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

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