Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Thread: Undetected shutter failure

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    2,427

    Undetected shutter failure

    Just pulled 4 blank sheets of film out of my processing drum, along with 2 good negatives. The two good ones were taken with my old Symmar, the bad ones with my new Grandagon 90mm. Pulled the lens out of the bag and tested the shutter - it was firing, the blades were just not opening. A long day's shooting and traveling down the toilet, along with 32 sheets of film. One more thing on the "things to check list" - occasionally dry fire the shutter and see if it opens.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    2,427

    Undetected shutter failure

    Just did some more investigation - this is a Copal 0 on a 90mm 6.8. If the preview lever is set for open, the lens will not fire and you know it at once. If the preview lever is moved just slightly toward open from closed, with the shutter blades still closed, the shutter fires but the blades do not open. Can some with a fairly new copal 0 try this on their shutter - I am curious if it is a design failure or just a problem with my lens, i.e., should I send it in for work or just add checking the preview lever position to my check list?

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    5,031

    Undetected shutter failure

    The shutter leaves on my Copal 0 'snaps' open to preview and 'snaps' closed. I had a Copal 3 that was less certain about opening/closing for preview, until it was cleaned and lubed. The shutter leaves opened okay when the lever was pushed to the open position, but the shutter leaves wouldn't close completely unless the lever was 'flicked' closed. If gently pushed to closed position, the shutter leaves generally failed to completely closed. I couldn't live with the uncertainty. After clean/lube, it became a very happy shutter!

  4. #4
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    7,786

    Undetected shutter failure

    Ed -

    I just pulled my 90/6.8 Caltar II-N, and it behaved the same way. So I tried a bunch of other lenses in late-model Copal 0 - five total - and every one of them behaved the same way as well. There's a "sweet spot" - "sour spot"? - where if you position the preview lever just so, the shutter will do this. I couldn't reproduce this behavior on a Copal 1 that I tried, though.

    I'd never run into this problem in my own shooting - maybe I'm just more energetic in flicking the preview lever all the way to the stop. But thanks for sharing this - now I'll know to be careful.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    2,427

    Undetected shutter failure

    It was only a persistant problem because I used a Technika with the rangefinder for the day's shooting because it it easier to handle in difficult conditions - this was NO 9th Ward and I was in mud. Had I been flicking it on and off, I might have only missed one, but because I not using it, it compounded the bad luck of it having being knocked out of position.

  6. #6
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    7,786

    Undetected shutter failure

    It was only a persistant problem because I used a Technika with the rangefinder for the day's shooting

    Another really good point - thanks for mentioning that too. Once in a great while I'll haul out my Horseman VH-R and use it in viewfinder/rangefinder mode, and as you point out, that means that one messed up setting could affect a whole bunch of pictures and I'd be none the wiser until the film came out of the tank.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    5,031

    Undetected shutter failure

    Ed... what a disappointment for you! I once screwed up a whole day's worth of film using my Super Graphic and it's viewfinder/rangefinder. I pulled the lensboard out in a hurry and locked in in place while talking to a buddy. Only after the entire day was over did I notice that the lensboard wasn't seated against the infinity stops. Oh... and then there was the time I forgot to take the darkslide out of the roll film holder. But that's a different story. I LOVE press cameras but one mistake can really wreck a perfectly good day!

    I've become a "nervous Nellie" when setting up my cameras... test, check everything, check again, and tehn continually listen for the correct-sounding shutter noises. I've also started being a bit more aloof in an attempt to discourage too much chatter/taking with curious folks since I can only concentrate on one thing at a time (it's a personal problem of mine... not enough brain cells, I suppose).

  8. #8

    Undetected shutter failure

    All of my #0 copal shutters behave the same way - just a smidge of movement on the preview lever and the shutter fires but does not open.

    The one bright side is that most of my exposures are fairly long, and when the shutter fires in this weird 'Richards' mode, it just opens and closes rapidly - and it sounds different. From now on, my ear will be alert for that different sound.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    2,427

    Undetected shutter failure

    In retrospect, at the end of the day, as the light was going and I moved to longer exposures, I noticed that the shutter sounded funny, but not knowing of this failure mode, I did not explore it further. Probably would have been even worse to find it then when there was nothing left to do but drive home.:-)

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    4,588

    Undetected shutter failure

    Hmmm. I never have to wonder if my Speed Graphic's FP shutter has tripped. (Score one for Graflex.)
    Wilhelm (Sarasota)

Similar Threads

  1. Sudden (and not so ) Pyrocat HD Failure
    By Andre Noble in forum Darkroom: Film, Processing & Printing
    Replies: 27
    Last Post: 18-Jan-2006, 11:26
  2. One more on reciprocity failure
    By fw in forum Darkroom: Film, Processing & Printing
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 24-Jul-2000, 13:34
  3. Tripod failure
    By Doug Paramore in forum Gear
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 14-Jun-2000, 15:32
  4. Reciprocity failure
    By Jack Leonard in forum Darkroom: Film, Processing & Printing
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 18-Apr-2000, 23:46
  5. reciprocity failure
    By tao in forum Darkroom: Film, Processing & Printing
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 27-Mar-2000, 19:20

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •