rank aldis

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by andyaitken, Sep 4, 2009.

  1. andyaitken

    andyaitken Subscriber

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    Anyone know anything about a Rank Aldis, I have just got one (my first RF) and am currently finding that if focus on something relatively close or medium distance then everything is fine but over a greater distance the vertical alignment seems to be slightly out. Is this normal and if not how can i resolve this.

    Many thanks,
     
  2. steven_e007

    steven_e007 Member

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    Rank Aldis is a British company, but the only succesful google for such a camera led me to something described as 'made in korea' with a sekor lens...?

    Confused!

    A sekors lens should mean a Mamiya camera. Maybe someone was playing games with re-branding when importing /exporting. Is the camera maybe a Mamiya 35?

    Can you post a pic?
     
  3. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Aldis Brothers were a small company from Sparkhill, Birmingham, Rank took them over for their projector lenses. Rank were also importers and distributors, when I started photography Rank were importing one of the big brands, as Steve says it may have been Mamiya. They may have tried selling under the Aldis name for a short time.

    Ian
     
  4. steven_e007

    steven_e007 Member

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    I think Rank systematically took over most of the British camera and optical industry, didn't it? Stripped out the bits it wanted (mostly things for the cinema industry) and then closed many of them down :sad:

    I've heard it called "Rank misfortune".

    "Whatever happened to Taylor Hobson, then, Fred?"
    "Rank misfortune, mate..."
     
  5. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Taylor Hobson are a very successful company now, they split off Cooke as a separate company.

    I think some of the other companies Rank took over are still trading, Aldis merged with Wray and the successor company Hilger is still trading. Rank took over Kershaw so a Rank Aldis camera may be a Kershaw with an Aldis lens.

    Ian
     
  6. mikeinlagardette

    mikeinlagardette Member

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    Hi Andy,
    your camera is a re-badged Mamiya 4B, they came in quite a few flavours, early versions made entirely in Japan, later ones with Japanese lens & Korean body. Some of the later ones had a cds light meter, instead of the selenium one fitted originally. In general, those intended for the British market had a Mamiya Sekor lens, those for the USA a Mamiya Kominar, either version being f2.8/40mm in a Seikosha shutter, 1/4sec-1/250+B.

    To adjust the vertical alignment of the rangefinder, remove the two screws holding the accessory shoe and remove it, revealing a hole in the top cover 2.5mm dia. Beneath this hole is a slot headed screw, which is central in a wedge device; insert an appropriate sized screwdriver, engage the slot, and turn gently whilst looking through the viewfinder. Try this at different distance settings, although in my experience there is rarely any difference, and when content, replace the accessory shoe, it's as simple as that!

    If, after carrying out this adjustment, you feel the need to adjust the horizontal alignment, remove the four screws retaining the upper viewfinder bezel, and remove this complete with glass. You will see a vertical plate to the right of the lens, and this has two screws, the right hand one is used to alter the alignment. Only tiny alterations to this screw will result in dramatic changes in alignment, so go carefully, there is plenty of online info about the methodology of rangefinder alignment, or just use your intuition. Re-assembly is the reverse.

    These are beautiful little cameras, made to standards of precision rarely encountered in mass production, and they have often survived the years remarkably well, but like any small mechanical device 40+ years old, they mostly need a bit of TLC.
    Good Luck, Mike
     
  7. andyaitken

    andyaitken Subscriber

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    Mike,

    Thanks ever so much for the info, it is very helpful. Incidentally, in addition to this issue there exists a slight wobble in the lens - which is loose. Any ideas on how I can repair this? as it cause the lens to move and then not to release the shutter, when the shutter release is pressed. I now have two of these cameras so it's not critical but it would be nice to get the other one back in correct shape.

    Once again thanks ever so much for your advise.
     
  8. andyaitken

    andyaitken Subscriber

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    Ian,

    Thanks.
     
  9. andyaitken

    andyaitken Subscriber

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    Steve,

    Thanks for the info. I will try to upload an image son but not sure how, as yet as a new user.

    Many thanks,

    Andrew
     
  10. mikeinlagardette

    mikeinlagardette Member

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    Andy,
    'fraid I can't really help you with the lens problem, except to say that I also have two of these, one restored, and another bought as a parts donor, and this camera has a very sloppy front element, much as you describe, the other silky smooth.

    The difference is so great that I refuse to ascribe this to wear alone, and I imagine there will be some means of adjusting the fit. The camera that's restored has evidently had the lens board removed at some time, because the leatherette covering had been lifted and poorly replaced (there are four countersunk screws holding it in place, visible when the covering material is peeled back), and it's possible that this was done to correct the sloppy fit, and if so, it worked!

    The bottom plate will need to be removed in order to disconnect the shutter cocking arm before removing the lens panel, so this is not for the faint hearted! I'll try and have a look for you, but it won't be until the middle of next week. Here's a link (I hope!) to some pics of the decent one:

    http://www.apug.org/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=15233&stc=1&d=1252534730

    http://www.apug.org/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=15234&stc=1&d=1252535305

    Best, Mike
     

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    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 9, 2009
  11. andyaitken

    andyaitken Subscriber

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    Mike,

    I have taken the lens board out and apart. The problem seems to relate to a very fine screw/pin that seems to act as a locating pin for two locating rings in turn one of which seesm to be a spacer ring. The screw actually protrudes into a recessed gap in the locating (spacer) ring. If the screw gets worn or comes undone at all, then there is a fair degree of play left for it as it does not fit tightly to the spacer ring, and therefore increases the slack in the lens. As this screw/pin seems to serve no other purpose I screwed it in as tight as possible but there was still slack, so I undid it and added a bit of superglue and waited for that to dry and then reassembled the lens. As a consequence it is now much better without any slack. All I have to do now is put the lens plate back in and sort out the cocking mechanism.
     
  12. andyaitken

    andyaitken Subscriber

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    Just to provide you with what has been requested, a pic of the camera below.

    Thanks,

    Andrew
     

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  13. mikeinlagardette

    mikeinlagardette Member

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    Andy,
    Well Done!
    I think that your efforts will make life far easier for anyone restoring these cameras, including me! If I get time, I'll dismantle the scrapper and have a look myself at the mechanism, but it's good to have my hunch about the provision of adjustment confirmed, the overall standard of construction is such that something of this sort was most likely.
    Thanks again for taking the trouble to pass on your knowledge, perhaps we should co-write a new workshop manual!
    Kind Regards, Mike
     
  14. andyaitken

    andyaitken Subscriber

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    cds meter

    Anyone have any ideas on how to wire a cds meter on a rank aldis wires have worked loose and its difficult to figure out were they came from?
     
  15. R gould

    R gould Member

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    as far as I know the Rank Aldis cameras, both their slr's and rangefinder were rebadged mamiya, and as such were very good,Richard