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Thread: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

  1. #1
    IanG's Avatar
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    Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Early "Modern" Rodenstock lenses and separation was discussed in a thread about Shneider/Linhof marked lenses. I've started a new thread so as to be more on Topic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Salomon - HP Marketing View Post
    Nonsense. All lenses can separate. Old Rodenstock lenses are no more prone to do so then old Schneider lenses.

    We have been the USA distributor for Rodenstock lenses since 1988. Since 1988 we have extended a lifetime warranty on all Rodenstock lenses that we import. Since 1988 we have not received one lens for service covered by our warranty with any sign of separation.

    Separation occurs because of handling and storage conditions. A lens that receives an impact may develop a small pinhole in the sealant around the edge of the elements. That small hole can let moisture into the lamination between two elements. That then starts separation in lenses.

    Modern lenses are very immune to this effect. All old lenses can have this happen.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Salomon - HP Marketing View Post
    Specifically
    I would have replied to Bob before but my lens was a continent away, here's two typical examples of Rodenstock separation/de-lamination:


    This is a Linhof selected 150mm f5.6 Sironar, serial number as seen in the image.

    While back in the UK I noticed one of my Rodagons an f5.6 210mm Serial no 8808435 had similar de-lamination.


    Both these lenses have been kept in identical conditions to my similar Schneider lenses. However both were second-hand but the enlarger lens came with 5 others from the same commercial darkroom, all of which are OK although the only Rodenstock is probably newer.

    I have numerous LF lenses dating back to the 1880's, although most are modern and the only lenses with any separation are these two Rodenstocks.

    Ian

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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Ian, FWIW my 58/5.6 Grandagon s/n 5 664 858, ex-Graflex XL, has bad separations in both cells. Bob will reply, rightly, that since the lens is pre-1988 it isn't HP Marketing's problem. It is Rodenstock's problem or Graflex Inc.'s problem. Either way, cold comfort for me.

    Cheers,

    Dan

  3. #3
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Dan, Bob says this never happens !!!!! There are no knocks or dings on my Sironar, and it is "Modern" production, no longer using balsam cement.

    But are Rodenstock prepared to admit it occurs ?

    Ian

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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Ian, to be fair to Bob, he said it hasn't happened since 1988. The VM's Rodenstock chronology dates your Symmar and Rodagon between 1971 and 1974. Not on Bob's watch.

    I agree with you that it is shameful that Rodenstock released any lenses with bad cement -- most of the 58/5.6 Grandagons in existence seem to have separations -- and won't make them good. But I'm afraid that seeking redress from Linos is just wasted effort.

    Did you ever read that minor classic Cold Comfort Farm? If so, do you remember the bull's name?

    Sorry,

    Dan

  5. #5
    the Docter is in Arne Croell's Avatar
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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    I have a Sironar and an old Rodagon showing separation, too. It is however, not necessarily a sign of sloppy manufacturing. At that time (1960's, 1970's) they no longer used Canada Balsam, but not the UV-curing optical cements of today, either. The most likely cements were a one-component thermosetting cement or a 2 component cement using considerable amounts of solvent. Both versions involved heating of the cemented group to 70°C or similar, and the shrinkage of the cements was much worse compared to the UV-curing ones (after Hank H. Karow: Fabrication methods for precision optics, Wiley, New York 1993). Whether a group separates depends on several factors, including the types of glass (different thermal expansion), the curvature, etc. An example are Voigtländers Heliars and Apo-Lanthars - the post-war Heliars from the 1960's rarely show separation, but it is a common problem with the Apo-Lanthars. The lens type is the same and the radii are similar, too, so in this case the different glass types were probably the reason. It looks like Rodenstocks choice of glass combinations at the time was not optimal for the cements used, but they probably never realized that until years after production. Schneider might have just lucked out that their glass combinations were better for the optical cements of the time. And Rodenstock is in good company - it is common in the Voigtländer Apo-Lanthars, Apo-Skopars and Telomars and in the Zeiss Oberkochen Sonnars for LF (250 and 180mm), too.

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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    I don't want to pick a fight, but that's a 30-plus year old lens, and while it may have a design similar to the current Sironar, it is still many generations behind anything current. You can't reasonably expect a company to warranty a product multiple times past their stated warranty, especially since it is very likely that you are not even the original owner.

    Schneideritis hits that era's Schneiders, de-lamination hits that era's Rodenstocks. Both issues have been widely discussed on the internet. Whether you see the delamination or Schneideritis on other brands or types of vintage lenses probably depends more on their design (older lenses are simpler) and the point of view from which you view the elements.

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    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Frank, I certainly don't expect a warranty on a 30+ year old lens. However you shouldn't see this happening on a lens of any age, kept in reasonable conditions. It's not remotely similar to Schneideritis.

    I posted because Bob Salomom asked me for specific information after he said that "Modern lenses are very immune to this effect." I appreciate his involvement with Rodenstock started in 1988, my lens originates from Europe, and has probably never been to North America.

    By the 70's most lenses can be deemed "Modern" so it's unfortunate that Rodenstock and from what Arne says some Voightlander and Zeiss lenses suffered this cement problem.

    It would be useful to know which of these Rodenstock lenses are susceptible, for instance there's a similar Caltar (Sironar)150mm for sale here in the classifieds at the moment.

    My particular Sironar still has some life in it until the separation gets significantly worse, the photograph happens to catch the light at the best angle to highlight the problem, but 99% of the time is very unobtrusive and anyway has no effect on image quality at the moment. The lens has no re-sale value other than for it's shutter.

    Ian

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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Well, I think if Rodenstock screwed up, they (not Linos) should offer at least some joy to the owner of the lens.
    I have lenses over 100 years of age that show no sign of separation, but then again they are Goerz. I had a $cheiss protar that was nothing but crispy balsam - perfect glass, but unuseable.

    Schneideritus is relatively easy to cure - I've done it myself.

    Separation is quite a job to rectify, re-cementing a lens is no simple job.

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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Quote Originally Posted by E. von Hoegh View Post
    Well, I think if Rodenstock screwed up, they (not Linos) should offer at least some joy to the owner of the lens.
    I fully agree with E. on this... Rodenstock should be the company that takes responsibility for the problem.

    When I first started off in LF, I purchased a used Master Technika and a couple of lenses, one of which was a 90 f4.5. It was de-laminating ever so slightly at one edge. Although I don't know how long he's owned the equipment, the package was in mint condition and the previous owner was absolutely meticulous with regards to caring for his gear. All of his camera equipment was stored in Haliburton cases.

    Anyway, the long and short of it was that I contacted Rodenstock in Germany (the Canadian distributors were as helpful as....) and the reply was that they wouldn't repair the lens even after I offered to pay for the service.

    Consequently, the elements went out the door and the shutter is still being used.

    Cheers
    Life in the fast lane!

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    Re: Rodenstok - Separation/De-lamination

    Quote Originally Posted by E. von Hoegh View Post
    Well, I think if Rodenstock screwed up, they (not Linos) should offer at least some joy to the owner of the lens.
    I have lenses over 100 years of age that show no sign of separation, but then again they are Goerz. I had a $cheiss protar that was nothing but crispy balsam - perfect glass, but unuseable.

    Schneideritus is relatively easy to cure - I've done it myself.

    Separation is quite a job to rectify, re-cementing a lens is no simple job.

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