Double image in rangefinder?

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by EKDobbs, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. EKDobbs

    EKDobbs Member

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    I decided to try my hand at a little CLA of a Kodak Signet 35 rangefinder camera. Oiled some of the gears, filed a mechanism that wasn't catching, etc. I also took the liberty of scrubbing every surface (minus the mirror) of the rangefinder apparatus. You can now see much more clearly than before, and the triangular patch is now visible. However, the patch is projecting a double image slightly below where it should.

    Any ideas? I managed to bend the focus glass (?) a little to get it almost correct vertically, but it's still seeing double.

    Any ideas are appreciated.

    If you want me to take a picture of anything in particular I can.
     
  2. EKDobbs

    EKDobbs Member

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    Quick update, silly me found the vertical alignment screw. Still seeing double, but progress!
     
  3. Grytpype

    Grytpype Member

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    I don't know the camera, but most rangefinders have a front-silvered mirror behind the RF window. Has someone replaced it with a back-silvered mirror? You could be getting a second reflection from the glass.
     
  4. EKDobbs

    EKDobbs Member

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    I'm not home at the moment, but that's quite possible. The camera was serviced at least once by a Kodak technician in the early 60's (they leave fancy little stickers in the film chamber). It's possible that they replaced the mirror during a routine CLA. The mirror was the only glass that didn't have a yellow sheen from the weird glue they used.

    That's actually the whole reason I opened it up. Viewfinder was practically impossible to see through, and rangefinder patch was neigh invisible unless pointed at the sun. My theory is that the weird (orange/yellow, organic looking) glue they used off-gassed in the viewfinder assembly and coated all the glass. A few quick wipes and it's about 40 years newer, minus the double image and a slightly maladjusted rangefinder.

    Now if only I had the skillz necessary to oil the shutter gears and clean the aperture blades...

    I can already tell this hobby is going down the rabbit hole. ;D
     
  5. Grytpype

    Grytpype Member

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    If it does turn out to be a back-silvered mirror, and you feel like replacing it with a front-silvered one, look out for a cheap plastic Polaroid, of the type that has the film-pack underneath. They cost next to nothing and have a mirror big enough to make several rangefinder mirrors. Use the glass-cutter on the glass side, not the silvered side.

    If you haven't already seen it, there's some information on the camera on Daniel Mitchell's site.