Can someone help me price this Rolleiflex?

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by PeteZ8, Sep 5, 2012.

  1. PeteZ8

    PeteZ8 Member

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    I believe it to be a 1951 K4A. Shutter seems snappy although it's a little stiff going into 1/500. Picture taking lens has a bit of dust or fungus inside, but not much. One of the images should show that. Otherwise it's in I guess average condition for a 61 year old camera. I'm selling this for my uncle and I want to get a fair price, but I'm also likely selling it to a friend so I want to make sure it's not overpriced. It does need a good general cleaning but other than that I'm a little lost on grading these things. Fleabay seems to be around $200~$250 but I could be missing something here I have no idea; I'm not a Rollei guy.

    Also, if anyone has a part number or knows what Rollei calls the little pin that secures the film door, I'd appreciate it. It appears to be missing and I'd like to replace it before I sell it. The 3rd image should show where it's missing (center of photo)

    Also, some of the leatherette is popping up in the corners, which is pretty normal for a camera this old. Suggestions on what I should use to reattach it?

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  2. Larry H-L

    Larry H-L Subscriber

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    The ones I have seen lately seem to go for $250 to 300.
     
  3. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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    the guy in manhattan beach, harry fleenor, will charge you $25 to replace the door latch pin. If it is just unscrewed you can probably find one and install it urself. Not sure of a a part number but if you call it the door latch pin ur close.

    Harry charges a lot to do a service but does lovely work. I have a friend who spent $135 at Essex Camera Repair in New Jersey to service a camera just like this and he said it came back lovely. Essex could also replace that pin, might cost less, dunno, you could ask.

    By the way -- the shutter is not stiff going into 1/500 because there is something wrong -- that is normal. Pushing the shutter speed over to 1/500 engages a second spring to give the blades extra oomph, so it is harder to push it there. When you are shooting at 1/500 with those cameras the self timer does not work, so don't try.

    Also, when it is set at 1/500 and the shutter is cocked you should not move it away from 1/500 without first firing the shutter.

    Later rolleis had different setups, spring-wise, and you didn't have the extra bit about the top speed, but this one and the EVS model later in the early 50s did.

    I would put a test roll in the camera and make sure the film feeler mechanism works -- those are those two rollers adjacent to the film spool supply section inside the camera, when you load you feed the film between those two rollers and then onto the takeup, close the camera and wind, the camera should stop at frame one.

    Reattach leatherette with some sort of glue that is not permanent so you don't make life harder for later repair people.

    Good luck.
     
  4. Bill Harrison

    Bill Harrison Subscriber

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    Rolli

    In 1964, had one of these in college, loved it.... $275./$300. without the pin would be my guess....
     
  5. Two23

    Two23 Member

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    I paid $375 for this same camera in June. It was in average shape ( a bit better than yours,) had a leather case, lens shade and a bunch of filters. The optics were clean. I wouldn't charge more than $250 for this one, and a bit lower might be more fair.


    Kent in SD
     
  6. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    I think you'd be very lucky to get $250 on eBay in this condition. And personally I would not pay more than $175-200 tops looking at what has sold as completed eBay auctions lately for similar Xenar and Tessar Rolleiflexes. $200-225 would be fair I think.
     
  7. Dan Daniel

    Dan Daniel Subscriber

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    That isn't 'leatherette.' It is leather. White glue works well for me for small sections like that. I think Rollei used shellac, which softens with alcohol. But I've found that alcohol doesn't do old leather any good at all.
     
  8. PeteZ8

    PeteZ8 Member

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    Thank you for all the replies, this helps tremendously. I would hate to make a mistake and get an unfair price to a friend or family member.
     
  9. JPD

    JPD Member

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    This model is often called "3.5 MX" in America and "3,5 A" in Europe. "K4A" was the code only used at the factory.
     
  10. jon koss

    jon koss Subscriber

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    Maybe I am a pessimist, but basically this is not a usable camera as offered due to the missing pin alone. Regardless of how simple or not simple the repair is, the next owner is still looking at a repair.

    Plus, it sounds like the lens does not pass the 'is it clean and clear at first glance' test. What do you see if you shine a light through it from behind with the shutter open on B? Is it a veritable garden of detritus? It may not be fair, but any buyer is going to perform this test. If the lens does not pass muster in the backlight test then your pool of potential buyers will really dry up. If grungy, it can probably be cleaned up by a competent professional but again you are looking at a repair. Plus there is risk that it does not clean up 100%.

    Does 'shutter seems snappy' mean that it runs well by ear at all speeds including one second? Or is it hanging or sluggish at the longer speeds? A little additional information would help there. If draggy at low speeds, my finding is that potential buyers are not going to say, 'Oh well, I will only use it at fast speeds'. They are going to say, 'I don't trust this shutter; it needs a CLA'.

    My basic sense is that this is a tired old camera and any buyer will need to factor a trip to the repair person into the purchasing equation. That will add up to somewhere north of $100 depending on the mechanic. And the uncertain lens condition discounts further. So my sense is that the numbers quoted so far in this thread are quite rich. If your buyer friend is not knowledgeable, or has sentimental attachment, (s)he may willingly pay too much for it but I would not expect as much from informed buyers made fully aware of the condition that it appears to be in.

    All of this is based on a handful of low resolution photos and a casual description, so please take with grain of salt.

    Best,
    J
     
  11. Frank C

    Frank C Member

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    In present condition, $225-250 tops.