Shutter sticks after being outside

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Cybertrash, Dec 14, 2013.

  1. Cybertrash

    Cybertrash Member

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    I was out shooting with my Speed Graphic and 127mm Ektar in a Supermatic shutter the other weekend. After this the shutter has started sticking every now and, either there's a little delay before the blades open, or they don't open at all, or open unevenly. I suspect this is because of cold (it was around -6 when we were outside), but the camera has been siting indoors for over a week now and the problem persists. What should I do?
     
  2. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    Time for a CLA - clean, lubricate adjust.
     
  3. MDR

    MDR Member

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    New lubrication. A short time solution is to put the shutter on a radiator for about 15minutes, the dried lubricants will be liquid again and work. It's better to change the lubricants (suitable for cold weather) though as you will have the same problem again if you use it in the cold.
     
  4. vysk

    vysk Member

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    yep, cold froze up the lubricant and it warmed up but solid. Gentle heating might work but only for a short time.
     
  5. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    The old lubricant's thinner components have evaporated or moved where they are not needed, and the thick cold-sensitive ones remain. Time for a professional cleaning.
     
  6. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    No, don't do that. The OP says that "...they don't open at all, or open unevenly..." which indicates there is probably more wrong than thickened lubricant. Possibly the blades are not engaging properly with the actuating ring, or something was damaged by drag caused by the thickened lubricant.

    Do it right, do it once, have a reliable shutter... try home made half-baked repairs and have potential junk. This shutter is nearer 50 than 40 years of age at a minimum, possibly it has never been serviced.
     
  7. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Member

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    The Supermatic came in 3 basic versions, the no flash sync called Supermatic, The flash bulb and electronic flash synced called Flash Supermatic, and the electronic flash synced called Supermatic X. The Flash Supermatic is the most difficult to service and the Supermatic the easiest. On a scale of 1 to 10 of increasing difficulty the Supermatics are a 6.
    Supermatic diagram.jpg

    The service manual for the Supermatic with 127mm Ektar is (was) readily available on line from several manual retailers such as http://craigcamera.com/ item 90518 under reprinted service manuals.

    The blades opening unevenly says that the operating pin holes in the blades or controller are worn and the related blades are sticking. Continuing to use in this condition will result in a non working parts shutter.

    flash supermatic disassembled.jpg
    Service it or have it serviced soon.
     
  8. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Happened to me two years ago, exact same setup and exact same issues.

    +1 on the professional CLA. Get'r done.
     
  9. Cybertrash

    Cybertrash Member

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    Thanks for all the answers, I suppose I'll have it serviced, it's a shame, a CLA around these parts can cost about as much as a new shutter off of that famous auction site sometimes...
     
  10. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    Which likely will also need servicing.:wink:
     
  11. Cybertrash

    Cybertrash Member

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    That's a good point, never thought about it that way. Although I'm under the impression that some of the more serious resellers will actually stand by their claim that the shutter has been tested.
     
  12. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    It may have been tested and passed the test. Inside, at room temperature, once. Very often though that test is done by ear.
     
  13. Tom1956

    Tom1956 Inactive

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    yep
     
  14. Kawaiithulhu

    Kawaiithulhu Member

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    This is so true! After a couple months of haunting hellbay I've only seen one shutter ever that had actual timing numbers and properly calculated error %percentages, even from those that claim a recent CLA; it's like all the rest copy+paste the "shutter sounds great at all speeds!" script for the descriptions :laugh:
     
  15. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    Yes, anyone who claims a recent CLA should have the paperwork as proof or it's baloney.
    Personally I not only assume that anything I buy (I use mainly pre-1970 gear) will need anything from a thorough CLA to a complete overhaul. In fact I sometimes actively seek items that are not functioning, this way I'm able to get something I could not otherwise afford. I service all my equipment myself.