Minox 35GT not happy, thoughts on this?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by fotoobscura, Jul 2, 2014.

  1. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    My Minox 35GT, a camera I am very fond of, appears to be no longer.

    I ran a test roll yesterday and it came out completely clear (e.g. no frame markers and not even a faint trace image). I verified that the film was in fact winding through the roll and was being taken up (by virtue of the tension on the winder and seeing the rewind wheel spin). The roll even stopped at the last frame. I also verified that light was going through the shutter and that the shutter mechanism was working.

    Short of COMPLETELY expired Xtol (slightly possible but seems unlikely), anyone else have thoughts on this?

    Thanks much!
     
  2. Vilk

    Vilk Member

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    how did you verify the shutter is opening? it's a common failure with the GT--the shutter pivots on a screw that comes loose after a while. you can easily tighten it with a small screwdriver, i did twice, but the next while will be shorter. it's a design fault--the movement of the shutter loosens the screw. all in all, GTs are landfill by now. unless you have use for strips of clear film, that is

    :cool:

    ps. i got rid of mine over a decade ago, so my details may be off; perhaps it wasn't a hinge but some other thingy--a spring stop? there was definitely a screw i kept tightening though

    pps. on the bright side--it's trivial. i have six thumbs on each hand :laugh:
     
  3. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    I verified the shutter was opening by (before loading the film obviously) taking off the back, aiming it at a light source, and depressing the shutter while looking through the lens hole :smile: Seems legit enough of a test :smile:

    My only conclusion is bad developer. Like so bad that it was equivalent to developing with water. I can't think of any other reason I could clear a roll that way if the film winds and the shutter opens and closes. In worst case I'd at least get ONE image!
     
  4. ME Super

    ME Super Member

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    Based on the info in your original post, this doesn't sound like a camera problem to me. Edge markings (which may include frame numbers) are put on the film at the factory. I'd say if you have no edge markings, one of three things happened (in no particular order):

    1. You bleached traditional B&W film (or blixed it). Traditional B&W film should never be bleached unless you're doing reversal processing, in which case you use a non-rehal bleach.
    2. You fixed the film, then developed it.
    3. You're developer has gone bad.
     
  5. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I hate Minox cameras! They have superb lens (made by Leica?), small, super quiet, perfect camera for my needs - except shutter is the worst one ever. It just dies without warning, you can not trust this camera. When my Minox shutter died (in the middle of Istanbul) - I destroyed the camera into pieces.
     
  6. Vilk

    Vilk Member

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    ah, an expressive enough equivalent of a scredriver turn, i guess :tongue:

    but seriously, i'm with you, such a great concept ruined by an obviously silly design flaw. tried a dozen compacts later, nothing quite like it :sad:
     
  7. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    No Blix or bleach in my BW chemistry, separate darkroom for color. Zero chance of fixing > developing. Guess I've never seen chemistry so bad or so old that it wouldn't produce any latent image. Perhaps this is my first experience. My Xtol (stock) (was until I dumped it last night) 8 months old, still plenty young to at least produce a latent image. I've had containers of ID-11 stock that were two years old that still were good enough for test rolls. That's not even on the extreme side, I've had 5 year old D76 in an accordion container develop film.

    But alas, it seems to be the developer.

    Thanks
     
  8. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    I've had a Minox 35 G.T. for about 27 years that I bought second hand and it's never broken down, and still going strong.
     
  9. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    This is definitely looking like user error on my part. I'm re-shooting a roll and developing in Rodinal.

    Thanks
     
  10. Vilk

    Vilk Member

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  11. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    Vilk,

    Bookmarked!
     
  12. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    That's easy, does the film have edge markings?

    Edit:
    Now there's your problem (as Adam Savage would say)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 2, 2014
  13. railwayman3

    railwayman3 Member

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    I've has a Minox 35GT since 1994, which has served me well, although with fairly light use. I recall having a panic a few years ago when the second half of a film was completely blank until I realised that the camera hadn't been used for a few months and batteries were flat ....the point is that all seems OK, the shutter makes a click and the film winds on, but without exposing. Obviously there is a film wind-on release which clicks even with a flat battery. (And, of course, my own fault for not using the battery-check button regularly!)
     
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  15. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    In my younger days I rejected the Minox because you have to do scale focusing. Recently I like it but bought 35GL in excellent cosmetic condition at an estate sale. The shutter sometimes works and sometimes doesn't. Finally sold it.
     
  16. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    There is an important variation of the fix before developer work-flow error.

    It is the pre-soak, stop, fixer work-flow error (and the pre-soak can be safely omitted).

    At 8 months, X-Tol and other developers should be tested before use.
     
  17. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Member

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    8 month old Xtol was/is dead.
    6 month Xtol is borderline.
    Mix the stock solution then pour up into smaller bottles filed to the rim and tightly capped may extend the life a few weeks.
    Been there, had it happen once, never let a second opportunity occur.
     
  18. John Wiegerink

    John Wiegerink Member

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    If you want a first rate, highly pocket-easy 35mm camera the Minox series 35's are it. I'll also say for every good Minox 35 out there there's five or six that bite the dust. I mean really bite the dust. Dust between the magnetic shutter contacts is what usually does the job on these little buggers. If you're handy and careful you can fix them yourself, but it's not for everyone. I have a total of seven working Minox 35's and at least twice as many "exploded in the box" Minox 35's. The best and most reliable are my Minox ML and Minox touring camera, but the data back on the Touring isn't working properly. I don't use that feature so it's not really missed. The sharpest Minox 35 I have is a beat up Minox EL that has to be kept in its bottom case 'cause it has a chip out of the corner on the front half and is light leak prone. Still, the lens beats my Rollei 35 with Tessar hands down. These are really professional cameras when it comes to image quality. The sad thing is that your shutter makes the same exact sound whether it is working or not. Yes, I've been really disappointed on a couple of occasions, but really blessed with some nice images more often. Most of my shooting is with my medium-format gear, but it's so easy to bring along the old EL or the Minox ML that one or the other is always with me. This holiday it's my Hassy SWC and the Minox ML loaded with B&W film. Should be a fun weekend. Oh, I really hope it's operator error and not your Minox GT. Of course they are replaceable if need be. JW
     
  19. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    Wow I own several Rollei 35's. I had no idea the lens quality was par or above par then the Rollei. My Rollei's take great, sharp images.
     
  20. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    Unlike a lot of people I do not think an electronic camera is less reliable than a mechanical one. However, in the case of the Minox vs Rollei the Minox's electronic seems to have a reputation for unreliable.
     
  21. John Wiegerink

    John Wiegerink Member

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    Hey, I'm not knocking Rollei 35's and own two(have owned several more), but I'm saying the lens on my worst looking Minox EL is that good. I also prefer the Tessar on the Rollei 35 to the Sonnar so maybe I'm just different. I will say that when you pickup a Rollei35 you know you have a fine made machine in your hands. When you pickup a Minox 35 you think you have a toy in your hands. Still, it's a very capable toy when and if it works. JW
     
  22. John Wiegerink

    John Wiegerink Member

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    Well, the meters of the Rollei 35's were no sure thing either, but at least the meter wasn't tied into the exposure system. Plus, at least in my experience, those meters were not that great even when they were working. Still, the Rollei wins the craftsmanship award between Rollei and Minox. JW
     
  23. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    Oh well didn't own a Rollei either but meter isn't high on my list. It's just icing on the cake.
     
  24. zanxion72

    zanxion72 Member

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    I hate my minox 35GT. It works perfectly, but...
    Many frames coming out blank. The shutters works perfectly, but sometimes when the meter reads too much light, the springs move so fast that the shutter does not open.
    No exposure control. The meter is far from perfect. It gets fooled easily and ruins many of those frames that do not come out blank.

    Other than that, I just love its looks, its size and that's why I keep it.
     
  25. Xmas

    Xmas Member

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    The electonics are more reliable unless there is static electricity exposure.

    The electric contacts/transducers can be horrible any battery contact, switch or electro magnet...but are curable with clean and petroleum jelly or light oil to protect from environmentals.

    The mechanics rarely wear or break cept if you force them but the lube turns to solid butter or migrates.

    The difference in maintenance $ is dependent on design The Contax II has way to many parts the Leica II almost none.
     
  26. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    The 35mm Minotar lens on the Minox 35 would put many S.L.R.' lenses to shame., I have had excellent 20"x16" enlargements from the negatives.


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