New to me Makina II

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Dkirk, Jul 26, 2013.

  1. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Just awaiting delivery of a Makina bought at auction, but from the image having trouble positively identifying it. Makina.jpg
    The Square rangefinder windows suggest IIS, however the front lens panel seems to suggest the between the lens shutter of the pre-S models. Also don't think I've seen many (any?) with the sync on the lower left, which is a point of confusion for me.

    Any help or guidance is welcomed. Also, if anyone can point me in the direction of a service manual for the camera that would be great.
     
  2. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    I'd say it is a Makina II, mostly because of the mount type. It has several details that points me to it. Lens seems to be one of those that comes in two parts, one screws in front of the shutter and the other behind, folding finder is rounded...

    Here's one like yours but in black.

    [​IMG]

    I have seen a few with flash sync connector added at a later time. Yours looks nicely fit from the small photo. The flash "socket" on top of the RF housing is also a later addition by some owner.

    As for servicing, removing the front panel allows easy access to most important parts. To adjust the RF, one of the front screws on the nameplate (don't remember off-hand which one but it should be easy to find out with a quick search) should be used.

    Which lens does it have?
     
  3. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Thanks for the response. Lens is the 10cm 2.9 Serial No 99829 (if that helps with dating it). The cold shoe is marked "Germany" and appears to be either nailed or riveted on. However some of the lens surface looks as though it's been 'polished' with 000 grade wire wool. . .
    Just waiting on a film back to arrive, would be good to find out if the sync is 'new' enough for flash, or if it is for the older M flashbulbs. Any idea on how to replace the bellows, or how IR proof they are? Would be nice if there were a decent resource on these cameras.
     
  4. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Also noticed to my fustration, it doesn't have a wide angle stop. . .
     
  5. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    I've never used any of my Makinas for IR photography, so I can't tell for sure. Actually, I've never done IR photography, so don't know how it would work. I assume that, if there are no pinholes or thinnings, it should work. I have had three Makinas, one III and two IIIR. Still have the two IIIRs, and bellows haven't been an issue so far with "regular" film.

    As for the lens surface, if it is cloudy, chances are that can be cleaned if it is just some evaporated oil or just plain dust and dirt, unless you can see it clearly scratched...

    Serial number, based on what I have seen - not that I have compiled a serial number list or anything, I am just a big fan of this system and keep an eye on the market out of curiosity mostly - tells me that it is a late unit, confirmed by the two square windows. Last time I saw it, serial 93270 was mounted on a chromed Makina II with round RF window. and a lower 102xxx number was assigned to a "Schnell" - German for "Rapid" or "Fast", hence the IIS model - Anticomar 10cm f/2.9. A number closer to yours - 99720 - has been observed on a chromed III with two square RF windows.

    Here's a IIS with a neat flash modification, similar to yours but on the opposite side of the lens:

    [​IMG]

    Just for the sake of knowledge-sharing, the highest serial number I have recorded on a Makina lens (actually belongs to an Orthar wide-angle) is 123929 - and serial numbers were shared by all different lenses with a couple of exceptions, so I think it is safe to assume that less than 125,000 lenses were made, out of them about 100,000 are "old style" and some 25,000 fit the Makina IIS, III and IIIR. Not too many of those cameras around, based on these figures...
     
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  6. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    Could it be that the "pressure bar" is a bit stressed and it simply does not engage properly because it is over-bent ? Are there two holes on the upper rail ?
     
  7. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    No holes, which makes me wonder if it is a derivative of the 2a or 2b. And the "arm" is flat, with no bevel or marking where the wide angle scale would be. . .
    Lens appears physically scratched and looks as though it WAS coated. . . Just wonder if it's possible to polish the scratches out with Cerium Oxide, but I need to wait till I get the film back and put a film through it first.
     
  8. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    The 2a / 3a had several differences, and yours looks like more as a regular II

    [​IMG]

    The two-part lenses were all made prior to 1936, so if it is or was coated, it did not left the factory that way. Actually, I have seen few coated lenses, and most of them are from the final batches.

    But, the chromed bezel on the lens, as seen in the photo of your first picture, is a detail with which the lens did not left the factory. So it may very well be that a previous owner tried some enhancements on the kit (but then, why scratch it after going to the trouble of having your lens coated...?)

    If the rail has no holes, then it must have been replaced at some time by some careless "repairman"?

    Here's a photo I had off-hand that hopefully you can use as reference:

    [​IMG]

    1.- Distance scale for wide angle
    2.- The end of that arm ends in a little depression with a line in the middle: aligning this line with a number sets the focusing distance
    3.- This rivet engages on the hole for the position of each lens (in the picture, engaged on the wide angle hole)
    4.- This is the hole for positioning the arm with the normal lens
    5.- Distance scale for the Anticomar normal lens (the black tab with the vertical white line moves to align with the distance when focusing)
    6.- Pressure tab to disengage the arm from the holes on the rail, pulling or pushing the front to open or close the camera respectively

    Hope this helps !
     
  9. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Cheers, any thoughts on how to do a conversion like this to mine? Ideally loking for some kind of manual or guide more specific to this model, rather than the more 'visible on the internet' IIS and onwards publications. If I could get a ground glass for the back that would make things far easier with fabricating something and calibrating the focus scale.
    Also it would appear the chrome bezel in the picture, the seller neglected to send both it and the roll film holder he mentioned. . . Waiting on a response before I raise a dispute in ebay. . . So far un-enamoured with the sale :sad:
     
  10. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    Sorry to hear that... Hopefully you will stay in love with the camera and, even if this one does not end happily, will get another in the future... But I expect the seller will stand behind his product...

    Ground glass are the hardest part to come by, I broke one of mine and luckily had a replacement, but if I break this one I may be in trouble (I could always buy a plastic one and adjust it, but I like to keep it as original as possible).

    There are little differences between the II and the IIS apart from the lens mount, so if we are talking here about instructions manual, the one scanned and published by Richard Urmonas should teach you anything you may need.
     
  11. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Any chances you still have the frame for the broken one? Or if you could send me pictures of it next to a ruler (happy enough making a temporary one out of card and tracing paper for general testing, and playing the waiting game for ebay. . .). Waiting to put a bid on some ziess Ikon slides that seem to be the right size (got seller to measure. . .) as it's a bit inconvenient having just the one darkslide with it, as considering cutting down some 70mm film to test the camera with. Happy enough with the camera itself though, just the fact that it didn't come with the back is a pain. . .
     
  12. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    Yes, I have all the parts at hand, so it would be no problem to take some measures. Haven't got a caliper but will try to measure as precisely as possible. If you happen to have access to a 3D printer, it may be an option too...


    You mean sheet film holders? The ones from Plaubel appear from time to time on eBay. Are you based in Europe? I think I could send you one for free so that you can move forward while hunting down a better solution. Or check itm 231023263384 which may also come in handy.
     
  13. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Thanks, I've PM'd you. Ideally if you can provide measurements in mm, that would be great. Hopefully the back issue can be resolved with the seller soon, looking forward to putting a roll or two through it.
     
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  15. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Managed to find the body serial number. On the bellows mount at the rear of the camera, right hand side between where the strap lug is fixed to the body and the notch for the focus knob. Serial No is K976, wonder is it is truly the 976th camera they made, or does the K signify a production run? Anyone else feel free to post their model and serial number to help with dating.
     
  16. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    The numbering convention changed with the newer models. My two IIIR are:

    - OK54/757
    - OK55/955

    The first character may be a zero instead of an "O". I can discern a pattern there: one of them could be the 757th camera from 1954, and the other the 955th from 1955. If the first character is actually a zero, it may become a number one if more than one thousand cameras were made that year. But, just two serials are not enough data. Time to ask other owners ;-)
     
  17. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    ebay item 251310381283

    Makina II black with rounded window, Anticomar 100/2.9 #89762 reports serial number OA 118
     
  18. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    The camera above is actually being sold by a fellow APUGer:

    http://www.apug.org/forums/forum379/121119-plaubel-makina-model-ii-6x9-120-roll-film-back-case.html

    So those of you who still don't own one of these beauties, don't miss this opportunity !

    I have gathered other numbers sent by owners/sellers:

    - A nice set of Plaubel Makina III w/ Orthar #117971, Anticomar f/2.9 #118087, Tele-Makinar 190/4.8 #117890? reports serial number OK51/71

    - A nice set of Plaubel Makina IIS w/ Orthar #113383, Anticomar f/2.9 #112921, Tele-Makinar 190/4.8 #113309 reports serial number H49/167

    - A Plaubel Makina III w/ Orthar #118725 reports serial number OK52/167

    I have also received a couple or two of other answers telling me that serial numbers will be provided as soon as owners have the camera at hand.
     
  19. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Trying to set up a dialogue with someone at Plaubel GmbH to find out more about the designations. Fingers crossed. . .
     
  20. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Still waiting on a back winging its way from Germany to put a roll or two through it but it would appear that the sync modification was added much later - seems to successfully trigger electronic flash (and the flash is visible through the lens at 1/200) so all being well that's a nice addition. Sadly still having problems with V selftimer though. Any guidance on how to safely disassemble the lensboard and shutter to flush out and lubricate where necessary (Found a teflon based dry lube is effective on shutters intended to run 'DRY').
    I've got a copy of the Compur service manual for their shutters, so once I get to the shutter it's fairly straightforward. It's just getting to it that is proving somewhat problematic.
     
  21. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    Plaubel was sold in the 1960s to a Japanese consortium IIRC, which were the ones responsible for the various Makina 67. I'm not sure they would be really helpful, but it costs nothing to ask and we may get a surprise...

    Jo Lommen's black Makina II with rounded RF window has number OB 275
     
  22. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    One would hope that they retain some records on their previous models. Or at least who has them now, and how to contact. I suppose if you knew where to look, one could delve through Plaubels tax records. . . Interesting that most of the other serials seem to have two letter prefixes, yet mine just the one. Possibly K, H, OB, and OK refer to different markets they were produced for? Single letter for domestic, double for export or vice versa?
     
  23. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    Are you completely positive there is no "O" in front of the serial? Have you tried scratching a bit with the nail or fingertip in case it is hidden or almost invisible?

    I don't think different letters were assigned to different markets: one of my IIIR is marked in meters, while the other is marked in feet, and both share the same serial structure...

    The reported IIS serial number starts with one single "H", too. I'm waiting for the serial of the IIS from another colleague that should confirm if it may be a typo or it is common to this particular version.

    Could it be possible for you to upload a bigger image of your camera?
     
  24. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    Checked, no "O".

    There is the possibility the thing with your IIRs is the feet marking was an aftermarket addition - just as what appears to be a very professional job with the sync addition to mine.

    Another theory would be the letters refer to slight variations within the model (e.g parts from different suppliers?) Or different "Supervisors" or Plant managers in charge of the various production runs? Somewhere there will be a record, it would be quite nice to find out some more information about the background of the company - Wonder if there's a German equivalent of Companies House that would have the records.

    I'll dig the digicam out and get some larger images later tomorrow.
     
  25. jnoir

    jnoir Member

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    Well, I don't have the original receipt, but I bought it in the US, so I don't know. The simplest explanation to me is that it left the factory that way, I have not seen references to spare distance scales on Plaubel's contemporary catalogs where all accessories, including filters, focal plane shutter, etc. are listed. But, with no definite proofs we cannot be completely sure... It seems that there were adaptors intended for use with the focal plane shutter, but I have never seen one of those, and are described as kind of "clip-on" accessories. Scales are screwed, not that they are difficult to remove but I don't see them as user-replaceable parts, at least not like a focusing screen or a viewfinder mask. Distance scales for the wide angle are not interchangeable between a Makina III and a Makina IIIR - they are of different size, at least on the ones I have handled.

    I will ask some German colleagues to see if they can point me to the right direction, and maybe even do a call or two on our behalf - my German is a bit rusty to say the least... Again IIRC Plaubel's owner sold it because none of his descendants actually wanted to keep on with the business. I will see if I can identify and get in touch with any of them again with the help of some friends, we'll see if they are willing to have an interview or answer a couple of questions at least, if there are any remains of their ancestor's state...
     
  26. Dkirk

    Dkirk Member

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    makinaII.jpg Hopefully this should be a decent size.