engravings on metal

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by David Lyga, May 14, 2012.

  1. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    I just bought a newish Minolta SRT 201 with three lenses and all is almost new except for an engraving on body and lenses (a long number). Besides despising this 'aesthetic' I want to know if any of you have dealt with this in a creative way. It can always be filed off, leaving an ugly stain on the metal, then 'painted over' (How, please, and with which paint).

    These engravings can be carved into either the chrome or metal. In my case it is both. Any thoughts? - David Lyga
     
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  2. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    Cover it with some JCII stickers.

    Personally, after one experience with a SS number engraved on a camera, I don't buy anything with anything engraved on it after manufacture. This is really the only effective way to solve the problem.
     
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  3. paul_c5x4

    paul_c5x4 Subscriber

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    I'd suggest an epoxy filler with pigments mixed in to match the colour (as closely as possible) of the casings.
     
  4. M Stat

    M Stat Member

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    Years ago, while working at a camera store, we received a pristine Nikon F2 body in trade. The problem was, the previous owner had engraved (scratched) his SSN in two places on the camera body. It seems that, back then, the police departments were encouraging this practice in order to reunite owners with their property if it had previously been stolen. The shop owner was convinced that no one would ever buy it in that condition, so he let me have it for a very small price. To this day I still own it and it works great. I don't concern myself with the engravings and can only assume that if it were ever stolen, whoever the person is with the SSN on it would end up getting it back.
     
  5. phirehouse

    phirehouse Subscriber

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    I hate this practice also, and I feel your pain. I am afraid that if you try to "fix" this you might end up making the condition worse. I have a beautiful Mamiya RB67 that some moron engraved his number on, and at first I was really bothered by it. As time passed, I have come to accept it and I am not as bothered by it as I once was. Just use it for a while, the camera may endear itself on to you as is.
     
  6. Nick Merritt

    Nick Merritt Member

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    And it does at least give you another way to ID the camera! As others have said, leave it alone, since any fix you attempt is probably just going to make it look worse.
     
  7. vpwphoto

    vpwphoto Member

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    I engraved some Canon equipment back in the 1980's with encouragement from Police and Insurance agent... I traded it on Nikon gear and did find some erroneous stuff on a credit report once... I try not to worry too much that a Canon A-1 and F-1 and some lenses have my id # on them.
     
  8. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    Pinstriping tape over the numbers might work and look a little better.
     
  9. declark

    declark Subscriber

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    Bought an Ex grade F3 from KEH with an engraved name on the bottom. Doesn't bother me a bit and got a really nice camera that probably should have been graded higher otherwise. The previous owner had an unusual last name, so I had to Google it to see if per chance it could have been someone of notoriety, no such luck.
     
  10. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    David ,

    I think its not a big problem unless if you feel the engraved metal with your fingers. I think if metal feels like a needle , you can smoooth it. Best way is to use a 1200 grade filing paper which will smooth the engraved area. You can find it at internet or a department store. Minolta SRT is an excellent and looks like a army piece and lenses are legendary. 1200 grade paper is so fine ,it shines your finger nails.

    Umut
     
  11. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    By the way , there can be finer papers also , Use the highest number one , they come in a package , hand palm size. Be gentle and dont ruin the camera .

    Umut
     
  12. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    Yes, thanks all. The simplest response, from ixdude, probably will be what I will do: pinstriping tape over the numbers. And Mustafa, your filing is appropriate if the marks are deep and leave sharp borders. Paul's 'epoxy filler' is probably the best but the most complex.

    When you are able to buy an SRT 201 with 1.7/50 Rokkor MD, 2.8/28 Rokkor MD, and JC Penney 80-200, all in near mint condition except for the pervasive engraving, all for USD 30 you simply buy without hesitation. - David Lyga
     
  13. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    Sometimes you can buy top plates and bottom plates and just replace them. Someone doing Minolta repairs might have what you need or buy a parts camera.
     
  14. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    Oh, I have parts, but the problem is that the existing top and bottom are so pristine (otherwise) that any replacement would be a demotion! Life can truly be frustrating. - David Lyga
     
  15. Johnkpap

    Johnkpap Member

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    I bought a MD2 + MB1 for my F2 from KEH, marked down to $100 as it was engraved !! I took a chance and ordered it......

    It turned out that the Engraved item was the MB1 :smile: I had a parts one in my BGN box that was missing a door, swaped the door from the engraved one.

    You can get lucky some times.

    I have bought a a number of engraved items over the years as the price was right (Govenment Auctions), the best way is to find a Broken Junk camera with a clean base or top plate and do a swap,
    I have managed to fill in engravings, using black paint and business card but the results have been always so-so.

    Stay away from Rare cameras that are engraved as it is very hard to find a donor camera.

    Johnkpap
     
  16. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    One benefit of a camera that has someone else's Social Security or Social Insurance number engraved upon it is you can easily identify it as yours without having to disclose your own number!

    You just have to remember the number engraved.