Tough aperture ring and focal length help needed

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by J Rollinger, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. J Rollinger

    J Rollinger Member

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    I have a lens that is a bit tough to turn the aperture ring and also there is no focal length listed on it. The black finish on it is coming off and it looks like brass underneath. The lens is a Bausch & Lomb - Zeiss - Tessar 4X5 lens. Does anyone know the focal length and how i can loosen up the aperture ring? Also is there anything i could expect from the lens or is it just an average older lens? Im hoping for a vintage look to the images and i want to build a board for it and mount it on my Speed Graphic.

    Thanks!
     
  2. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Hi,

    You can figure this out by taking it outside and focusing on something distant. I always use the water tower across the Arroyo, about two and a half miles from me. It is nice and bright and close enough to infinity for me. I have heard other people suggest the sun...but I use the water tower for fear of messing up my eyeballs. If you focus, and then measure from the film plane to about the middle of the lens, you can get an approx. FL.

    For sticky apertures and shutters on old lenses, I have had luck by removing the elements, getting into the internals, placing drops of lighter fluid with a toothpick onto areas that look like they need to be free to move, and moving the parts for a while. This loosens up some of the gum and crud from the old lubricants and such. I also stick a toothpick and Q-tip in to pull some of that crud out. I imagine you should relubricate afterward, but I never have, due to lack of specific knowledge of what to use, how much to use, and where to put it. I am sure a camera repair person will have more proper methods, but I have been able to help out some lenses that I would never pay to have serviced this way.

    I hate to state the obvious, but don't just squirt lighter fluid into an open hole on the shutter, and make sure you take out the glass first. You want small amounts precisely placed.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 17, 2009
  3. J Rollinger

    J Rollinger Member

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    Thank you for the advice! It looks like there is 3 elements the can be removed very easy. I just didnt want to do something wrong and freeze the ring but after reading your advice i will go ahead and try that. Also there is not shutter and im hoping to use the focal plane shutter on my Speed Graphic for fast speeds due to the slow speeds stick. For longer exposures i will use a lens cap to stop the exposure. Thank for the help!