The crazy uncle in my attic: a Kiev 88 and Volna 3 80mm f2.8

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by chuck94022, Jul 23, 2013.

  1. chuck94022

    chuck94022 Subscriber

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    I've been out of the country for three years, and finally returned home. I stored a Kiev 88 with a kit Volna-3 80mm f2.8 lens in the attic and pulled it out today.

    Exercising the camera, I noticed that the aperture on the Volna opens as I widen the aperture, but does not stop down as I narrow it. It only narrows if I operate the DoF lever on the lens. Further, it does not stop down on release of the shutter. For example, if I set the shutter on B, and the aperture at f22, then trigger the shutter, the aperture remains wide open.

    The simple workaround is to operate the DoF lever on the lens before firing the shutter, which stops down the aperture and leaves it stopped down, but my question is this: Is this normal, or is it broken? I haven't used the camera in so long that I can't remember.
     
  2. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    From what I can remember (I'm at work now, I'll check properly on my 88CM when I get home), the Kiev bodies have no DOF lever, but the lenses do. All metering and focussing is done wide-open, and then it should close the aperture when you release the shutter. It's the camera that opens the aperture, and a spring in the lens closes it when the camera lets go.

    Firstly, if the aperture is not closing when you release the shutter, you have a problem (although you probably already know that).

    If you press the DOF lever on the lens, and the aperture closes, does it stay closed when you release or spring back open? If you press the shutter, does the aperture stay completely wide-open, or does it get very slowly narrower?

    Take the lens off and just work the body, you should see the little pin inside the left (looking at the mount) jump back when you release the shutter. If not, there's a body-problem.

    If that pin (in the body) does jump back when you release the shutter, it's probably a lens problem.

    Just look at the lens and press the pin coming out of the lens at different aperture settings. If pressing then releasing the pin doesn't make the aperture close (or doesn't close quickly enough), you have a problem.
    I've taken apart my fair share of lenses, and more than likely the problem is that the mechanism is gunked up with old oil, or a spring is broken (or just stretched past the point of it being a spring anymore, although that should only happen if you bork it yourself taking it apart, ask me how I know).

    If the lens is borked, then there's 4 solutions. Fleabay a new one. Get a CLA from someone reputable (and pay more than fleabaying a new one). Take the lens apart and try to de-gunk it. Get a Pentacon Six where you can move the camera-body-pin out of the way so it's always in stop-down metering mode, then use the DOF-lever on the lens to close the aperture and it'll stay there.
    If it's the body, I've never pulled one apart (yet), so I don't know how hard it'd be to fix.
     
  3. chuck94022

    chuck94022 Subscriber

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    Seems to be the lens. The mechanism in the body moves. If I press the DoF lever, the aperture closes and stays closed. If I press the shutter, there is no movement of the aperture, whether open or closed by me using the DoF lever.

    I'm thinking you're theory about it being gunked up is correct. I don't think it is a body problem. Off the body, pressing and releasing the pin on the lens does nothing. Time for a CLA, for a start, I guess.
     
  4. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    OK, I've just gotten home and played with my Volna (sounds dirty, baby).
    I've found something a bit weird about my lens already. Not pressing in the pin and changing the aperture, it sometimes does and sometimes doesn't change.
    But pressing in the pin, changing the aperture, and releasing the pin (like what would be happening mounted on an 88), it (almost) always springs to the correct point.

    In your case, releasing the pin should always narrow the aperture, so if that doesn't happen then it's gunk or a spring.
    From what I remember the last time I pulled one of these apart (which I've probably done more often than shoot with them), there's 2 or 3 springs all working against each other to make the DOF-preview lever and body-stopdown pin all work correctly. If your DOF-lever works and the body-pin doesn't, then it'll be the spring nearest to the mount not pulling hard enough. Or just gunk everywhere and the spring can't overcome the forces of gunge.
    Actually, if you're in California and it's been in an attic, more than likely the oil has just warmed up enough and gooped everywhere...
     
  5. chuck94022

    chuck94022 Subscriber

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    I disassembled and cleaned the lens. It was definitely gunked. grease on the diaphragm blades, grease on everything. Also took the opportunity to make all the glass squeaky clean. Works great now!

    volna3.jpg clean.jpg

    (I have no idea why Apug decided to rotate these images 90 degrees CCW...)
     
  6. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Member

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    Did you take them and post them from an iGadget, iPhone or iPad? The iStuff automatically rotates to the proper orientation, but sends the files unflipped and other displays don't make the automatic change.
     
  7. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    any online examples from that lens?
    curious as to performance...
     
  8. mweintraub

    mweintraub Member

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  9. chuck94022

    chuck94022 Subscriber

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    The lenses are good. But if you shoot them side by side with a Zeiss Jenar (which will also mount on a Kiev) you'll go with the Zeiss glass. But you can probably buy 3 (or more) Volnas for one Zeiss. On the other hand, you might need 3 or more Volnas to hit the reliability of the Zeiss... :tongue:
     
  10. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    I was kind of inspired by this thead, thought I'd take my MC Volna out for a spin today. I don't tend to use 'normals' too often, even if I've got more of them than any other (80volna/90vega/80biometar on P6 and 40/50/50/50/53/55/55/58 on 35mm).
    Stuck it on my 88CM, one back of Kodak Pro 160 and one back of 400Tmax, visited my 104yo grandma in her nursing home. Only took a few shots though, be a few weeks before I finish either roll...