Voigtlander Vito CLR Repair info

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by micwag2, May 19, 2013.

  1. micwag2

    micwag2 Member

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    Just picked this beauty up and it's in really nice shape. The shutter sticks open at 1/15 and also stays open on bulb until the camera is advanced. The rest of the speeds seem to work OK but I haven't tried to test the speeds. I'm pretty sure this just needs a CLA but I'd like to find some reference material. Online tutorial or a .pdf download of the original repair manual. Did some web searches but haven't found anything. Does anyone here have some info or could at least point me in the right direction? This isn't my first camera I've had apart and I haven't had one yet I couldn't fix.
     
  2. elekm

    elekm Member

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    As I recall, it's a fairly straightforward fix.

    There should be three tiny grub screws around the lens' facing ring. Remove those, then remove the facing ring. You should be able to unscrew the front group. Next, remove the middle element.

    If this is a Pronto(r) shutter, remove the retaining ring. You usually have to rotate a small screw that has a portion of one side of the head removed. Turn it so the flat part is facing the retaining ring.

    After removing the retaining ring, you should be able to remove the front of the shutter, which is the decorative plate, the shutter-speed selector ring and possibly one other piece.

    Flush the slow-speed escapement with a mix of lighter fluid and graphite. Also, flush the self-timer mechanism. Allow the lighter fluid to evaporate. Make sure that you carefully clean the shutter blades. I usually remove the rear lens element and clean the backside of the shutter blades.

    Once the lighter fluid is evaporated, blow out the housing to remove stray graphite particles. Reassemble the front shutter parts. Dry fire the camera. You might need to manually turn a gear in the film chamber to tension the shutter.

    Make sure that all speeds work correctly. Reassemble the shutter.

    Clean the lens helicals and relubricate. Recollimate the lens for infinity focus. Reassemble the front lens parts and tighten the grub screws. Not too tight -- "snug" tight.
     
  3. micwag2

    micwag2 Member

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    Thanks for the info. I'll be working on this in the next few days hopefully and I'll try and post my results.
     
  4. Richard530

    Richard530 Member

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    CLA may not be needed to get shutter working at slow speeds. I would try to "exercise" the shutter by firing at the next highest speed, 1/8, multiple times. Often, a camera unused for long periods of time will respond to this exercising. However, your camera, your choice.
     
  5. elekm

    elekm Member

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    Richard has some decent advice. Keep in mind that this camera is about 60 years old, and any mechanical device will require routine service whether it be a camera, car or sewing machine. And as always, much depends on how the camera was cared for and stored by the previous owner(s).
     
  6. vpoulis

    vpoulis Member

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    Hi
    I also have aVoigtländer Vito CLR De Luxe and the shutter does not work at all...it stays always open...do you think i am facing the same issue ?
    is it really that easy to repair, or i should seek an expert...? The camera (owned previously by my parents) otherwise is in mint condition !
    Thank you in advance for your help !
    Vagelis
    Athens, Greece
     
  7. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Subscriber

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    1. all shutter repair instructions and manuals state that the aperture and shutter blades be dry and free of oil and grease.
    2. lighter fluid leaves an oily residue and will damage or destroy plastic and rubber parts. Plastic and rubber parts have been used in shutters since the 1940's.
    3. Lacquer thinner is an excellent degreaser but will strip protective coatings off the aperture and shutter blades as well as damaging or destroying plastic and rubber parts.
    4. denatured alcohol is in the same class of potentially harmful solvents to be avoided in shutter repair.
    5. CRC QD Electronic Cleaner, http://www.crcindustries.com/auto/?s=05103 , is an excellent degreaser/cleaner that is safe on plastics. Other brands of electronic cleaner may not be as good such as the one sold at Lowes. I spray it into a jar and let heavily gunked up parts soak for a while.
    6. Grease is oil suspended in a soap base. Grease allowed to sit unused for a long period of time will have the oil separate out and the soap dry out. Sometimes the dry out is only superficial and exercising the piece of equipment will bring it back to life other times it won't.
    7. Extra fine powdered graphite used by itself is an excellent lubricant for aperture and shutter blades. I rub it in with a cotton swap being careful not to bend the blades, get it into the pivots, and remove any fibers left behind.
    8. The shutter is possibly a Compur. Although the exact camera this thread is about is not listed other Voigtlander cameras are. http://www.suaudeau.eu/memo/rep/Compur-shutter-repair-manual.html
    Compur, Compur Rapid, and Synchro Compur are very similar in build design. There are only a few Synchro Compur shutters and numerous variations that are merely adaptations to the many makes of cameras they were used in.
     
  8. vpoulis

    vpoulis Member

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    So...should i try to unstuck the shutter on my own...or should i seek an expert...it has been with the family for over 40 years and wouldn't like to be the one to destroy it...:blink:
    Also...is it possible in any way to make the light meter work ?
    Vagelis
     
  9. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Subscriber

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  10. alex ph

    alex ph Member

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    Just in case, I add to the thread my two cents on how to restore yellow patch in Vito CLR rangefinder. Here is a description of my experience, with some shots of the camera dismantled.
     
  11. micwag2

    micwag2 Member

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    Thank you for adding that to this thread. I still haven't had any free time to work on mine yet. Hopefully soon.