Mamiya RB Lens Repair?

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by M Carter, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    Anyone have some advice for RB shutter repair? KEH is now on a "one-price" level, $180 + shipping for any MF lens with shutter needing service.

    It's a 180c, when triggered off-camera it makes the appropriate "thunk" but the iris & shutter don't budge, they just stay wide open.

    The glass is in great shape and I hate to throw stuff out... and I just got a really clean replacement from KEH for $65.00. I saw the thread here on disassembling the 180, I might break down and try it. I hate to throw stuff out, especially a nice clean example like this one. Good chance I'd just destroy it trying DIY surgery.

    Hopefully there's a forum member who enjoys messing with such things? Thanks for any ideas.
     
  2. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    If you fail I'll take the glass from you? I have a 180 that is wating almost 2 years for new eyes.

    Your problem can be anything from oil in the blades to a mising or bad spring. Most likely a good shutter wash will solve your curiosity n uncover the problem.

    e-mail me, we can talk about it?
    paul
     
  3. EdSawyer

    EdSawyer Member

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    I've torn down RZ lenses to fix things in the past. RB should be similar, perhaps easier. With the right tools, it's not that hard. at the very least, it will make a nice wide-field loupe for 6x7 negs or transparencies.
     
  4. Chrismat

    Chrismat Subscriber

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    You might want to contact Paul Ebel, he fixed the shutter on a Mamiya tlr lens for me last year, did a great job and the price was fair.

    Chris
     
  5. Marc B.

    Marc B. Member

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    From info in a thread off of PhotoNet, (below) it appears that MAC, Mamiya America,
    sold much of their remaining Mamiya parts inventory to KEH, in Georgia.
    180mm lenses for the RB are very common on the auction site, and
    as you stated, you found another lens for far less then KEH's repair cost.

    If you don't work something out with Paul, or anyone else, you
    may also want to give Carol, at Flutots a call.

    PS: Like many, I don't like to throw away anything, either.

    Marc


    From the thread at PhotoNet: http://photo.net/medium-format-photography-forum/00bMf5

    Initiate a dialogue with Carol, at Flutots.
    http://flutotscamerarepair.com/Services.htm
     
  6. Andrew K

    Andrew K Subscriber

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    Parts are the issue - it's easy enough to tear one down, but when you find you can't get hold of the correct part it's frustrating (to say the least)..and a second hand part (especially a main spring) is not always the ideal solution..

    I should know - I have 2 backs needing parts, and no parts are available!
     
  7. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    Shutters rarely need parts.. they need cleaning n a lube job most times. These shutters in the C n non-C were made to out last all of us I think.

    Main springs are also a rare part to go in these shutters unless an end tab breaks off.. rarely though.

    Andrew, What parts do you need for your backs? I have several dead backs in the closet.
     
  8. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    The odd thing on this one - it seems like something's not connecting. Mamiya lenses make such a satisfying "thunk" when triggered off, and this one does - but nothing happens. So some pieces of the mechanism are moving, but there's a disconnect - which could be a broken and irretrievable part, or just something that needs to be re-attached. Glad I found a replacement, but it's sad the way this gear is aging. After spending a month on my "return" to the darkroom with 35, the giant RB negs were sort of "ahhhh" city. I'm aging as well, so maybe I'm just wanting to put a deposit in my karma account?
     
  9. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    The main problem with how this gear ages is lack of maintenance. Professionals maintained their equipment on a regulart basis.. not wait for when something goes wrong as most amatures do. By that time is it almost too late so the wearing effects of this become very damaging.

    We take for granted what we have at such bargain prices.. once these monsters denanded a pretty penny but earned more than their weight in gold... so the level of appreciation has goen down. So a CLA on that 180mm lens will cost you $90, a repalcement used one will cost you $100.. you'd go for the $100 and the old one becomes a paper weight. But new that lens would have cost you $500 or more so the CLA was well worth it.

    More than likely it;s jsut a clceaning n maybe a spring slipped off it;s post.. not terrable damages you are predicting. I repair lots of these lenses n rarely do I need to replace parts... especially since you say it is still purring just not closing it;s eyes... CLA.


    Anyway.. if you want I can tell you how to open her up n CLA..

    or as I said I can use the parts to give another lens a new life.


    paul
     
  10. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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  11. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    Paul, I'd love to get the skinny on it and give it a shot on a rainy day (March in Texas so I should have a few). Tell you what, if I fail, it's yours - if I succeed I buy you a drink!

    The glass is in excellent shape, and it's been my favorite, would love to have a backup.
     
  12. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    Sure I can use a drink. I know you'll get her going again. Just take your time n be patient.. it;s an easy surgery.

    E-Me when you're ready to get to work?

    meanwhile your shopping list of must haves....
    get a set of Whia screwdrivers from MicroTools.. their small assorted set is all you need.. no other special tools needed. It should have the O, OO, OOO crosspoints.. our main one is the OOO.

    http://www.micro-tools.com/store/P-26199/Screwdriver-Set-Slottedphillips-8pc.aspx

    Get some Coleman camping stove liquid fuel from any outfitter like EMS REI.. Models even carries it.

    At the music store get a 1oz bottle of trumpet valve oil.

    Small container of denatured alcohol from the paint store.

    That is all you will need to do a CLA on your lens.. and maybe every lens you own after you see how easy n fun this is.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 20, 2013
  13. rbultman

    rbultman Subscriber

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    What do you lubricate with the trumpet valve oil?
    Sent from my PI86100 using Board Express
     
  14. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    Gear pintels.
     
  15. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    I have everything but the valve oil (which I used to have - played cornet in the school band. That was another lifetime ago though...)

    My screwdrivers are a set with the replaceable tips and handle set. I just re-foamed the camera & backs and they were priceless to get the back apart (and do the zen-like glue removal on the dark slide spring). My local ace sells those small sizes if I need another.

    Can you post the steps on this thread (or a new one)? Between old cameras, old guitars, and recording gear, I can't tell you how many killer threads that are now years old end with a "PM me for the repair/adjustment details" followed by a "PM Sent". It would be great if future searchers could find a concise explanation.

    Ready for surgery - I even have a nurse's uniform for my wife! (Honestly, I do, come to think of it... there's a box of music video props in the closet...)
     
  16. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    It's funny, I've posted the same instructions so many times here but no one ever bothers to search it again... sometimes/most times no one ever reads it.. or at least the post didn't end in a thanks.. or even a PM sent or recieved.

    The other reason I like e-mails, we can send pics back n forth alot faster than I can figure out how to get em up here.

    Yes I'll post it here... not a problem.

    I'll get to it later though I ahve so many tings to do this morning n possably tonight.. have a shoot today n a repair tonight... I'll pull out my 180 so we are on the same lens.
     
  17. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    Sounds great - by the way, I just searched APUG with "mamiya 180mm stuck shutter" and did find a post from you (but it was an 'email me"). Mamiya RB stuck shutter did come up with a rough-ish rundown - if there's a decent post here that will save you some time, feel free to point me.

    I wouldn't be surprised if I'm fine getting the shutter exposed and then will need to take some pics to suss out what's wrong. I do have a nice macro lens for my DSLR though...
     
  18. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    OK got my 180-C right here..

    first you have to take out the name ring form the filter threads. I use a rubber no-hub cap jsut smaller than the lens front. That will also double to get the front cell out as well. You can also use even presure of your thumbs, wear rubber gloves to give you more purchase.. a bottle cap rubber sheet... get inventive n use your imagination but it has to come off.

    *****a tip.. if you unscrew the front cone by grabbibng the lens n turning it... that will take the preasure off the name plate n make it easier to get out.


    Once it's out.. you'll see the front cell in the center.. it has 2 notches on the sides for a spanner tool. You cna again use the rubber plug or even preasure on the rim.. 2 screwdrtivers one on each side.. I sometimes use a large c-clip pliers... or hemostat.. but most times it comes out by using my fingers or the rubber plug. It;s in there tight but once you break it loose initicallyu, it unscrews like a light bulb.

    ******Sometimes it is possable to unscrew the cone and by jamming a rubber bottle cap sheet in there as you pull up on it n turn the entire thing, it will have plenty of grip n come right up for ya.

    After the front cell is out you can unscrew the cone the cell was sitting in.

    Once you get that out we can go on... the rest is easy.. alot easier.

    .
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 23, 2013
  19. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    Thanks - I think I'll start on this monday. I assume you're talking about a plumbing connector (like a fermco) - I have a garage full of those.
     
  20. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    Yes plumbing caps.. black rubber with an aircraft clamp around the edge... if it;s too flimsy, just cut her down a bit shorter to stiffen the rim.

    Also if yoyu grab the cone of the lens.. it will unscrew ofmr the lower portion of the lens barrel. It will come up maybe high enough you can grab the rim of the ring with your finger n twist her out easier that way. It;s a common sence thing. you'll see as you get it started.

    BTW this is the hard part.

    Oh once we get to taking screws out.. put em in a pill organizer so to keep em with the step we are at. It makes a differrence in types of heads n threads when reassembeling step by step.

    My work surface has a thin excersize mat so it won't marr the lens, screws n things can't bounce off or roll either.

    Good light n stay neat.

    Have fun n enjoy the ride. You may adopt a new hobby.. restoring cameras.

    .
     
  21. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    So - I got a 2" Fernco, which was the right size - about 2.75" outside diameter.

    Got the name ring off and started on the lens assembly. Tried all of your tricks, and nothin' doing - except I did manage to remove the lock ring for the front lens element! (Guess I can clean out any dust inside, right?)

    The main lock ring was TIGHT. I realized I needed a lens spanner wrench. Never have owned one of those. Even when shooting 4x5 product, I never had a problem with lens board lock rings.

    But - am I not a man? A man surrounded by tools and whiskey, fine tobaccos, aged cognacs, asian supermodels and... grip gear. Lots of grip gear. From the fine folks at Matthews and Avenger and Filmtools.com.

    Gentlemen, may I present the ghetto-span-5000. The lens assembly is out! What's next?

    2.jpg

    1.jpg
     
  22. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    You got it MAN! use you head n it all works out jsut fine.. no fancy shamcy tools

    we don't need so stinkin tools!

    cool.. leave the frong element on,, you are opening a can of worms but if you feel it msut be cleaned.. go right ahead.. can of air handy n denatured alcohol.. paper towels, Bounty are best becasue they have no scratching paper in em. I also wear surgical gloves (unpowdered) so I don't get any oils on the glass.

    OK next....

    we are ready to take out screws...

    see the 4 screws?.. take em out n inthe pill organizer they go. lay the parts so they sstay toether in the step order they came out

    Next level has more screws.. take em out.. in hte pill organiser they go. same ting for order.

    Set the morror up dial to M

    Turn the sucker over..

    See the square mask?.. notice how the flats line up with the green dots?.. remeber that for later.. you may have to remove the tin mask n tack it back in to align later.

    There are 2 spanner notches in the part that hods the mask.. using a sraight edge or 2 screwdrivers or yor thumb nails.. unscrew it out.

    Now here is another black ring inside with spanner notches.. remove the retainer ring, thte shutter in it;s mount will fall out in your hand. The flash sync thumb thing will fall out.. watch out for the very thin metal on the preview slide.

    let me know when you are ready to go?


    I didn't take off my layers but look to see if there are 3 of 4 screws along the top of the rim? If so loosen them so the mount will come right out.

    I have to go downstaris to my shop n get some screwdrivers now so I can keep up with you.

    You are almsot there BTW. THe shutter will ahve to come out of the mount n you are ready to wash her.

    we'll do that tomorrow night.. meanwhile play with cocking it by rotating the actuating ring. Wath how it hits certain tings to open n close the shutter n fire as well as how the mirror up work.

    PM sent..

    paul 10-4 ONO!

    see ya here same time n channel. now for intermnission

    go get your pop corn!

    having fun yet?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 24, 2013
  23. M Carter

    M Carter Member

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    Got this far today - I got the two notched retainer rings out easily, but the shutter didn't come out. The three set screws on the side of the barrel (that go into notches, not holes) had to be loosened - then the assembly popped out. Looking good.
     
  24. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    that's it! you got it all in your hand now.

    Play with cocking it n see how the tabs along the sides hit certain things n how the internals you can see are operating. study it over a few times then we'll take the shutter out of it;s mount. OK?

    enjoy..