Moral/financial dilemma! Help!

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by naaldvoerder, Aug 24, 2006.

  1. naaldvoerder

    naaldvoerder Member

    Messages:
    654
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Last holiday my Contax ST went bust on me. Up to then it was my hiking camera and RTSlll my studio-camera. It has been send from Holland to Germany for a quote on repaircosts and the cost for repair were estimatedat a little short of 300 euro. Before going on holiday I was already contemplating swapping the ST, which I bought for 350 euro, for an Contax Aria, which is better for hiking (lighter) and available for round and about the same amount of money. Now here is my dillema. It is probably more economical the buy an Aria and not bother with repairing the ST. In that case the ST will be destroyed in Germany. It would only create extra shippingcost to have it send back unrepaired. And that's where the pain is, I feel a bit guilty about having a nice (allthough functionally challenged) camera of rather (in)famous pedegry destroyed, as it is not beyond repair. What would you do in this situation?

    Jaap Jan
     
  2. Lee Hamiel

    Lee Hamiel Subscriber

    Messages:
    39
    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2006
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Start playing the violin & if you don't know how maybe take lessons:smile:

    Seriously - buy the Aria & let it go & have fun

    Regards
     
  3. Dan Fromm

    Dan Fromm Member

    Messages:
    4,133
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Your alternatives are:

    Kiss the ST goodbye, pay nothing more for it, buy an Aria.

    Pay to have the ST repaired. You'll end up with, I hope, a good ST.

    Pay to have the ST returned to you, put it on the shelf, do nothing with it.

    Pay to have the ST returned to you, sell it as is-where is with full disclosure.

    This is really a question about money, not about sentiment or morality. Decide which of the these alternatives is better for you and do it.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Dan
     
  4. Robert Kerwin

    Robert Kerwin Member

    Messages:
    206
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2005
    Location:
    Albuquerque,
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    How much is the shipping cost? Could you eBay the defective camera (parts/repair/collectible) and recoup the cost of shipping? If you could sell the camera to a collector or someone who is willing to spend the money on repair and get back what you spent on return shipping, that would be a win for both you and whoever bought your camera. Just an idea. Like you, I'd hate to see the camera scrapped.

    - Robert
     
  5. John Bartley

    John Bartley Member

    Messages:
    1,399
    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2004
    Location:
    13 Critchley
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    It's a camera, nothing more. There are millions of them. Walk away from the Contax. Buy the Aria. Spend your emotional time and energy on something worth while :smile:

    just my blunt $0.02 worth of opinion

    cheers
     
  6. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

    Messages:
    3,242
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Location:
    Milwaukee, W
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I think the answer comes down to which camera will serve your needs more reliably and do the job best.

    Will an Aria meet your service requirements? Small compact and simple are fine if they do the job well. Additional weight and perhaps durability are good if they help and do not do not hamper your photography.

    I have no experience with either camera. If I have to make an uninformed choice and if the Contax ST had been very satisfactory in its use I would seriously consider having it repaired.
     
  7. Petzi

    Petzi Member

    Messages:
    857
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Location:
    Europe
    Shooter:
    Med. Format Pan
    Should be no more than 10 - 20 Euros.

    I would have the defective camera returned to me, then I would sell it on eBay. There are many people who buy defective gear to repair it or to get parts.
     
  8. Kino

    Kino Member

    Messages:
    1,730
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2006
    Shooter:
    Multi Format

    Yes, absolutely have it returned and sell on Ebay! I agree with Bob and Petzi 100%!
     
  9. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

    Messages:
    791
    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    When deciding the fate of a piece of equipment, I go through a decision-making process that considers alternatives similar to those listed by Dan Fromm. I usually go through this decision-making process prior to submitting the equipment for repair. Also, before I receive the estimated repair cost, I have already mentally set a maximum price that I am willing to pay.

    Many times I can make a decision based purely on economics. However, there have been times when sentimental value played an important role. It has been nearly impossible for me to scrap a piece of equipment that I received as a gift or as an inheritance from a loved one.
     
  10. bob01721

    bob01721 Member

    Messages:
    415
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2005
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    If the cost of repair is on par with replacement cost, then I'd consider it beyond repair. But how do you know it'll be destroyed? Don't you think it'll end up as a "parts" camera... which will allow others to continue a useful life?
     
  11. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,434
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'd probably fix the ST - that's just such a nice camera, and since you can't get another new ST, I'd fix it and see how much longer it lives. If this is the first major repair for it, I'd definitely fix it. If it is a second or third, then I'd look at replacing it. I'd also look at an RX as a replacement rather than an Aria (although the Aria is a very nice camera). If you're used to the size of the ST and the RTS III, the Aria will feel small in your hands. Also, the controls are a little different, whereas the RX controls are quite similar. And, the RX has the Digital Focus Indicator, which is a lifesaver especially when focusing in dim light with large fstop lenses wide open, or for properly placing your hyperfocal to exaggerate or eliminate your depth of field (you're shooting bright daylight and have fast film in the camera, but want a blurred background anyway, even though your working fstop is F22, for example).
     
  12. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

    Messages:
    4,913
    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Location:
    Northern Aqu
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Tes, it IS a moral dilemma. Destroying something that could be fixed is something that is hardly to be encouraged.

    I'd throw in my vote with those who advocate getting it back and selling it as a 'scrapper'. Or ask the repairer if they want it as a scrapper or for repair.

    I'll second the vote for the RX, incidentally, though I wouldn't make quite such grand claims for the focus confirmation. On the other hand Frances and I had an RX/Aria outfit on loan from the UK importers (with 35/1.4, 35/2.8 PC and 100/2.8 Makro), and the Aria is certainly smaller and lighter.

    Cheers,

    Roger
     
  13. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,434
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Ok - well, perhaps not lifesaver, but it is a very nice plus. I know it has helped me place proper focus when I've been struggling with a flat surface that lacks major detail.
     
  14. naaldvoerder

    naaldvoerder Member

    Messages:
    654
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Thanks for your comments so far. You have given it more thought then I expected. There are some questions that need anwsering. The cost of sending it back to me is 40 euro, which includes postage and a charge for making the estimation. It needs a new shutter and a new mirror. I don't think anyone would buy this body for 40 euro + ebay costs+ shipping. If I don't want it back the repairservice told me in writing the camera will be destroyed.
    I do know that the whole thing is a bit of a non-issue. But, as Roger said, we do throw things away to easy and I dislike doing away with stuff that was obviously beautifully made and served me well. I have never been able to bring myself to sell my Minolta stuff, even when I hardly ever use it, for the same reasons.

    On the RX, I did own that model aswell. It was indeed a lovely camera, with a very quiet, well damped, shutter. However, I was lured by the brick-like-qualities of the RTSlll, so I sold the RX, which is still a sturdy and rather heavy camera. That's why I am now tempted by the Aria. The most sturdy next to the lightest.

    Thanks again for your input and taking this more or less serious. I still haven't decided on my reply to the repairservice. I'll keep you posted.


    Don't you just love those luxury problems :wink:

    Jaap Jan
     
  15. Petzi

    Petzi Member

    Messages:
    857
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Location:
    Europe
    Shooter:
    Med. Format Pan
    I assume that the repair service would want you to either have it repaired or take it back. They don't want to destroy it, because then they had a lot of work disassembling and inspecting your camera, but they get nothing for it.

    In Germany, the estimations are binding, and even if the actual repair costs twice as much, they may still just charge you the estimated price plus maybe 10% or so. So they need to be very thorough when they determine what's broken. Plus, you get a two year warranty on the repair.

    I think it is important to have broken gear repaired and serviced because that keeps the repair shops going. :wink: Some are more expensive than others though.

    Are you dealing with TRITEC?
     
  16. naaldvoerder

    naaldvoerder Member

    Messages:
    654
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Yes, tritec. They DID write me to say there were 3 options;
    1 Go through with the repair
    2 Have it send back for 40 euro
    3 Have it DESTROYED by them

    THAT was what to wrote to me

    Jaap Jan
     
  17. Petzi

    Petzi Member

    Messages:
    857
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Location:
    Europe
    Shooter:
    Med. Format Pan
    Yes, these are the usual 3 options you have with every camera repair shop that I know.
     
  18. bob01721

    bob01721 Member

    Messages:
    415
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2005
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    When they say they'll "destroy" a camera, does that mean they will trash it? Or will it be "cannibalized" (destroyed) for parts to repair other cameras?
     
  19. Petzi

    Petzi Member

    Messages:
    857
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Location:
    Europe
    Shooter:
    Med. Format Pan
    They will trash the camera. In the case of Contax, I assume they have sufficient supply of new parts for repairs. No need to disassemble a used camera.

    It might be a different story with a 30 year old camera, but normally, the factory endorsed repair shops will tell you they can't repair when they are out of new spare parts.
     
  20. phfitz

    phfitz Member

    Messages:
    540
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2004
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    HI there,

    What dilemma??? Sell it on ebay with full disclosure and have the repair shop ship it back to the new owner. It would be a total waste to have it destroyed and silly to eat double-shipping.

    Just a thought.
     
  21. Bruce Appel

    Bruce Appel Member

    Messages:
    100
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2004
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Fix it. No sense in wasting a good camera, it keeps a craft in bussiness, and if you buy another used contax you take the very real chance of getting one that will also need work, if not now, in the near future. At least with this one you know what you have got.
     
  22. naaldvoerder

    naaldvoerder Member

    Messages:
    654
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I promised to let you know. I canceled the repair and didn't have it send back. Bought an Aria. I still feel somewhat guilty, but the Aria takes away a lot of the edge....Sorry....

    JJ