Mold in Rolleiflex viewing lens - what to do?

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by IloveTLRs, May 17, 2008.

  1. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    Grr :mad::mad: I've found spider-webby mold in the viewing lens of my Rolleiflex:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The taking lens is clear and photos come out okay (just used it on Tuesday.)

    Is it worth paying ¥¥¥ to get it cleaned?
     
  2. Uncle Goose

    Uncle Goose Member

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    I would do it, otherwise it might get worse over time. It will set you back some $$ but it's not a very complicated job.
     
  3. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    How does one go about opening/removing the viewing lens?
     
  4. tobias

    tobias Member

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    Fungus, it is.

    Hello,
    I have dealt with this in my 3,5T before, and it is actually rather straight forward, in the viewing lens. Unscrewing the lens group shouldn't even need you to remove the front cover from the TLR: if you wear surgical gloves, and are careful, you should be able to take off the front group, then hand dismantle the lens. make sure you lay out each lens in the right order, and right direction, on soft tissue paper or chamois.

    Oddly, I have used a combination of tow domestic substances to effectively remove fungus. Hydrogen Peroxide kills it instantly, but does not remove it. so you can use peroxide to clean out the metal barrel, and wash over the lenses with a q-tip. then, get plain white vinegar, and float that on the affected lens. leave it for about half an hour, then try wiping gently with a clean q-tip. it should just slide off.

    clean, blow dust off, reassemble, and take pictures.

    if you haven't got one, i have a pdf copy of the Rolleiflex TLR service manual.

    t
     
  5. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    Mine is a not a T, but an Automat MX. I don't see anyway to remove the viewing lens ...
     
  6. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    Probably if you put on a pair of rubber gloves or clean dishwashing gloves and put your thumbs just inside the retaining ring and apply turning pressure it will come un screwed. I have seen a lot of lenses that must come apart that way. Or you could peel back the leather in the four corners of the camera and take out the screws and lift off the cover which will then make the front element easily accessible to you. I would try the rubber gloves and pressure first. It looks like the fungus is just inside the front element.
    Dennis
     
  7. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    Thanks, the rubber gloves thing did it. However the lens won't come out completely. It comes out only to a certain point:

    [​IMG]

    Is there something I'm missing? If this involves cutting the leather away, I'll have it sent off. I don't want to be messing with that.
     
  8. elekm

    elekm Member

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    Be careful with this. Some of the viewing lenses are locked in place with a set screw that is under the front cover. And when replacing the viewing lens, make sure that the viewing lens is calibrated to infinity focus. If you don't do that, then the camera won't focus properly.

    Let me amend that answer. The camera will focus properly at infinity, but at closer distances, what appears to be sharp in the viewfinder won't actually be in focus.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 17, 2008
  9. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    Thanks for the advice.
    This repair seems too difficult for me so I'll have it fixed properly. Along with the fungus cleaning the mirror needs to be replaced and the spring in the hood is too loose so it flops closed when shooting upwards.
     
  10. makan

    makan Member

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    If you don't mind having it in your field of view you could just expose it to the direct sun and it will dessicate.