Nikon F WLF disassemble help

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by jeddy-3, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. jeddy-3

    jeddy-3 Subscriber

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    Hi Everyone, I recently scored a beat-up WLF (model 3 I think) and I sometimes enjoy using it on my black Nippon Nikon F. Since it's a beater I don't care about resale value and I'd like to take it apart--strip/sand off the chrome layer and repaint it black to match my camera. I just can't seem to figure out how to take this thing apart. It's like a puzzle. Does any one here know the secret to unlock the finder or know of any service manuals or sources for info? I'm tempted to just sand down what I can and tape the portions I don't want to paint but I'd rather do this properly so that it looks nice.
    Thanks.
    Paul Cretini
     
  2. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    Some of the WL finders are assembled using shafts that run the length of whatever flap is being moved.
    They pop up because there's a spring on the shaft pushing outward.
    Needle nose pliers work as well as using a piece of wire to simply push the shaft out. because of the sizes involved I'd use the pliers.

    Rangefinder forum has several threads on dechroming camera parts, It seems like the method most recommended is an acid bath with an electrode and anode with a metal piece to receive the chrome attached to one of them. I really don't remember the details
     
  3. jeddy-3

    jeddy-3 Subscriber

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    Thanks. I'll check out the "shafts" thing. As far as chrome removal no problem. I was very successful at removing the chrome on a little Olympus 35RC I recently painted with black enamel using the method you refer to...electrolytic de-plating, using dilute HCL and a weak (1 or 2 amp) automotive battery charger. It worked very nicely, removing the chrome and not damaging the brass in any way. I'm not sure the WLF is brass underneath and may not go the same route with it's chrome removal but I'm really more interested in how to get the bugger apart without destroying it. I was hoping someone might have a diagram or had done it before. I appreciate your reply.
     
  4. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    That's what it's called. Memory is going straight down the toilet.
    If you have something like an ice pick you can start the shaft out by using the point(really?) to push it out far enough to grab an end. There is a spring on each shaft and they seek the 4th dimension(it's their home) if they're not watched carefully.