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Thread: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

  1. #1

    Question 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    Hey everyone. I recently picked up a 203mm f/7.7 Ektar on Facebook marketplace. It turns out got the short end of the deal. The biggest deal is the shutter. It's the Graphic Synchro-Compur, and the speeds are completely FUBAR. Naptha bath didn't help it, and it needs to go out for repair.

    Here's the issue I'm having: It appears to be far more cost effective to replace the lens with a shutter that has PC Sync built in. I just cannot find a shutter. From what I can tell it can take a Prontor 1, Copal 1, or Compur 1. Are there any other possibilities that I'm not aware of?

    Any help or advice is welcome, I'm just frustrated beyond belief. I've scoured the search feature on the forums too.

    Thanks!

  2. #2

    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    I believe the British lenses were compatible with common shutters but the US ones were supplied with Kodak ones. Seems like the Brit ones were marked in some way. Anyone know for sure?

  3. #3

    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    British Marked ones are Mount 370.

  4. #4
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    I have 3 with bad shutters

    Previous owners wore them out

    Great lens though!
    Tin Can

  5. #5

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    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    Quote Originally Posted by KingTigerII View Post
    Here's the issue I'm having: It appears to be far more cost effective to replace the lens with a shutter that has PC Sync built in. I just cannot find a shutter. From what I can tell it can take a Prontor 1, Copal 1, or Compur 1. Are there any other possibilities that I'm not aware of?
    Those are the choices. None of the shutters is available new. One relatively cost-effective way to find, e.g., a relatively inexpensive Copal 1 might be to find a relatively unloved lens in one. MIght be. I just took a look on ebay.com, found nothing worth, IMO, chasing. It might be better to return the Ektar for a refund, if possible, and buy a decent plasmat type in shutter. I'm thinking 210/5.6 Fujinon, but these are larger and heavier than the 203 Ektar.

  6. #6
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    I often use a small Packard shutter with DIY sync

    This stuff is over 70 years old

    Shutters are a big problem as only Packard is still in production
    Tin Can

  7. #7

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    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    Fact and reality of these vintage shutters. Consider this Graphic (Re branded Compur) shutter would be about 80 years new, to expect any mechanical device to be properly and fully functional after all those decades without any service or proper care would be absurd. Know the 203mm f7.7 Ektar is an excellent lens in many ways with no modern equal. Knowing and understanding this, the way to address this is to sent the shutter/lens to a properly qualified individual to be Cleaned/Lubed/Adjusted as needed. The solvent bath could have made the problems with the shutter worst as the solvent can and will float around the decades old Gooo all over the shutter innards then leaving a film and their residual Goo in places that is no good at all.

    As for shutter interchangeability, yes the lens cells can fit into a# 1 shutter (Compur, Copal, Prontor and ..) long as the original lens cell spacing is matched to within 0.001" of the old-vs-replacement shutter. Any replacement shutter can easily have the same "Fubar" shutter speed problems as the current Graphic-Compur shutter. This points again to the reality of getting a know good shutter by testing before ownership, or sending the shutter out for proper CLA which is a wise investment into any lens to be used on a view camera and produce predicable results. Another trade off with these older Graphic-Compur shutters -vs- modern-new, the modern shutters do not have a round iris. This might be important of out of focus and into out of focus rendition is important to your image making.

    The flash sync socket is a Kodak bayonet, mostly rare today as there was a time when Kodak wanted to offer an alternative to the Prontor flash sync socket. The Kodak bayonet works good, in some ways too good as the flash sync cable can yank down the entire camera outfit if the sync cable is tripped on due to the positive locking of the connector's bayonet. This is what the the Kodak bayonet cable looks like after it has been modified for a wireless flash sync.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Kodak 203mm Ektar.jpg 
Views:	24 
Size:	44.9 KB 
ID:	226454

    Yes, this Graphic shutter works good as it has been CLA_ed and the total cost was not a bargain but a very GOOD value for what this lens does.

    If this is your first view camera lens, consider purchasing a modern Plasmat from any of the big four (Rodenstock, Nikkor, Schneider, Fujinon) from a dealer that offers warranty and right of trial and return. This can go a ways to ending up with a lens and shutter that functions properly.


    Bernice

  8. #8

    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Tin Can View Post
    I have 3 with bad shutters

    Previous owners wore them out

    Great lens though!
    That seems to be what I am finding everywhere - "Great lens, shutter is shot"

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fromm View Post
    Those are the choices. None of the shutters is available new. One relatively cost-effective way to find, e.g., a relatively inexpensive Copal 1 might be to find a relatively unloved lens in one. MIght be. I just took a look on ebay.com, found nothing worth, IMO, chasing. It might be better to return the Ektar for a refund, if possible, and buy a decent plasmat type in shutter. I'm thinking 210/5.6 Fujinon, but these are larger and heavier than the 203 Ektar.
    I was looking that route and, just like you said, there is nothing worth chasing. I thought about returning it but It's a hassle through Facebook marketplace and tbh I'd rather just keep it as a lesson and wait for a shutter to cross my path (I work at a camera store). I looked at the Fuji's and the Nikkor's but I really want the rounder Iris that the Compur has. Which means I'm just going to have to get this repaired...

    Quote Originally Posted by Tin Can View Post
    I often use a small Packard shutter with DIY sync

    This stuff is over 70 years old

    Shutters are a big problem as only Packard is still in production
    This one's only 59 years old Valid point though. I'm used to the older gear, just in a current state of obsession.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Fact and reality of these vintage shutters. Consider this Graphic (Re branded Compur) shutter would be about 80 years new, to expect any mechanical device to be properly and fully functional after all those decades without any service or proper care would be absurd. Know the 203mm f7.7 Ektar is an excellent lens in many ways with no modern equal. Knowing and understanding this, the way to address this is to sent the shutter/lens to a properly qualified individual to be Cleaned/Lubed/Adjusted as needed. The solvent bath could have made the problems with the shutter worst as the solvent can and will float around the decades old Gooo all over the shutter innards then leaving a film and their residual Goo in places that is no good at all.

    As for shutter interchangeability, yes the lens cells can fit into a# 1 shutter (Compur, Copal, Prontor and ..) long as the original lens cell spacing is matched to within 0.001" of the old-vs-replacement shutter. Any replacement shutter can easily have the same "Fubar" shutter speed problems as the current Graphic-Compur shutter. This points again to the reality of getting a know good shutter by testing before ownership, or sending the shutter out for proper CLA which is a wise investment into any lens to be used on a view camera and produce predicable results. Another trade off with these older Graphic-Compur shutters -vs- modern-new, the modern shutters do not have a round iris. This might be important of out of focus and into out of focus rendition is important to your image making.

    The flash sync socket is a Kodak bayonet, mostly rare today as there was a time when Kodak wanted to offer an alternative to the Prontor flash sync socket. The Kodak bayonet works good, in some ways too good as the flash sync cable can yank down the entire camera outfit if the sync cable is tripped on due to the positive locking of the connector's bayonet. This is what the the Kodak bayonet cable looks like after it has been modified for a wireless flash sync.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Kodak 203mm Ektar.jpg 
Views:	24 
Size:	44.9 KB 
ID:	226454

    Yes, this Graphic shutter works good as it has been CLA_ed and the total cost was not a bargain but a very GOOD value for what this lens does.

    If this is your first view camera lens, consider purchasing a modern Plasmat from any of the big four (Rodenstock, Nikkor, Schneider, Fujinon) from a dealer that offers warranty and right of trial and return. This can go a ways to ending up with a lens and shutter that functions properly.


    Bernice
    See, this is exactly what I knew in the back of my head - but through sheer determination and obsessive compulsive drive, I refused to acknowledge. I know the stuff is old, and the fact that it's a Compur design makes it particularly difficult to retain condition when it is never maintained. It really boils down to this: Find another copy or have it repaired. I work at a camera shop, and I deal mainly with used analog gear - I just have blinders on...big time. Also, good to know on the ASA mount - I'm looking at solutions. Thought about the modern Plasmat route, but the damned round iris in the Compur makes me crazy.

    I think I'm going to repair this one, thank you everyone. I'm going to stop obsessing now

  9. #9

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    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    I found a cheap Geronar 210 for ~$120, and swapped the shutter for my 203 lens elements. Fortunately 210 is close enough 203 that I can use the aperture scale as is. I may send the old compur in for service, but for now, the black ring copal 1 is accurate enough. (FYI, don't go looking for a shutter by itself--for some reason they almost always cost more than an boring lens with the same shutter.)

  10. #10

    Join Date
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    Re: 203mm Ektar Shutter Help Needed

    Doesn’t your camera shop have a repair capability, in-house or via contract?

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