Yashica Electro 35 GSN: rewind button stuck

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by ntenny, Mar 18, 2009.

  1. ntenny

    ntenny Member

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    I've just acquired an Electro 35 GSN that appears to be in lovely shape except for a couple of dents in the filter ring. It arrived without a battery, but with the shutter correctly firing at 1/500. I put a battery in, verified that the "check" light worked, and then managed, in a fit of vague inattention, to perform the following steps:

    1) Cock shutter
    2) Change setting from Auto to B
    3) Press rewind button on bottom

    The camera is now in a weird state where the advance lever won't advance, the shutter button won't depress, and the rewind button won't come out. Opening the back resets the frame counter correctly but doesn't reset the rewind button. The shutter lock is in the unlocked position, but feels as if it were locked. Twiddling the various shafts inside the camera has done nothing; removing and replacing the battery has done nothing.

    What did I do? I'm guessing that the shutter is locked out because it thinks I shouldn't shoot while the rewind button is in---but how do I get the rewind button out? I've looked through the manual and I can't tell what's supposed to trigger the rewind button to reset.

    Thanks for any suggestions.

    -NT
     
  2. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    Nathan,
    Try turning the film advance sprocket gently. If nothing happens, try pushing down the shutter release then rapping the camera on the bottom plate very smartly with the heel of your hand. Do the same whilst turning the sprocket. Do the same whilst gently trying to advance with the thumb lever.Keep fiddling and rapping until your hand hurts. Believe it or not, it sometimes works. If no success, do the same things tomorrow. Think good thoughts.
     
  3. thisismyname09

    thisismyname09 Member

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    Oddly enough I think the same thing happened to me today with the same camera. I was fiddling around with my (actually my brother's, but he never uses it) electro 35, and managed to lock the lever. Are you sure the shutter is unlocked? To fix my lock up I basically had to force the shutter lock back open, which was a bit scary, but it fixed it. I can't open mine right now as it's got film in it but if I remember correctly you can see a little tab that moves up and down with the rewind button, manually pushing that back down with a toothpick or something may unjam it.
     
  4. ntenny

    ntenny Member

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    Wow, that was quick---thanks for the ideas.

    The film advance sprocket turns freely; if I turn it in the rewind direction I can hear what sounds like a ratchet, but it doesn't prevent it from turning in the other direction. I sacrificed a roll of film, wound it onto the takeup sprocket manually, closed the camera and rewound it; no change.

    I'm becoming more convinced that the root of the problem is the stuck rewind button. The film won't advance because the shutter's cocked; that's only reasonable. The shutter, I think, won't fire because the rewind button is depressed. (It's not the shutter lock; I checked the manual twice and it really is in the unlocked position.) I can't see anything inside the body that's obviously related to the rewind button, so I think my next move is to take the bottom plate off.

    This wasn't meant to be a project camera, but for eight bucks I suppose I should have expected some surprises...

    -NT
     
  5. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    There's a catch holding the RW button down.
    Remove the bottom plate(3 or 4 screws) & take a look at the RW button. There is a latch engaged in the side of the button. Move it away from the button & it will pop up.
    If there's nothing wrong with the advance it should work.
     
  6. ntenny

    ntenny Member

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    Well, I got the rewind button back with the catch under the bottom plate, but the release button still won't depress. I found the repair manual, and as far as I can tell, everything visible from the bottom looks exactly as it should with the shutter cocked---I think I need to go in through the top plate next and see if I can figure out exactly what's preventing the release rod from descending.

    -NT
     
  7. b1bmsgt

    b1bmsgt Member

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    There must be something that came loose that is blocking the shutter release somehow. Is the window for the frame counter still there? They have a habit of coming loose and jamming things up...

    Taking off the top, however, is the next logical step. Good luck!!

    Russ
     
  8. ntenny

    ntenny Member

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    Well, the top is off, I've pored over the repair manual, and I have only the vaguest understanding of what I'm seeing, but I've come one step further towards understanding why the shutter won't release.

    The area of investigation is shown in the attached image (d*g*t*l photo, sorry). When I attempt to depress the release rod, the plate labelled A tries to descend as well (it has a little tab that sticks out, hidden in the photo, and links to the release rod), but it runs into the plate labelled B and things can go no further.

    I can't figure out from the manual what these two plates are for. From their location, I would guess that they might have to do with the linkage from the release rod to the actual shutter, so perhaps the mechanism doesn't think the shutter is cocked---but in that case, what's stopping the film advance?

    Ideas welcome. I'd really like to avoid having to break into the lens/shutter assembly if I can...

    Thanks

    -NT
     

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  9. b1bmsgt

    b1bmsgt Member

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    Well, actually, that's the way it's supposed to work. Here is a shot of the inside:



    [​IMG]

    (I also apologize for the digisnap, but there is no other way in this case.)

    The Pad of Death (POD) is the rubber pad between A and B in your picture. As you can see in your picture, it is badly deteriorated, but it's not likely that it is the cause of your problem.
    Anyway, the shutter release rod pushes the other rod down when you depress the shutter release button. The POD is the interface between the two. The second rod (B in your picture) has the electrical contact brushes for the metering system mounted to it. Possibly one of the screws holding the rod brackets has come loose. If the shutter button cannot be depressed all the way down, the advance locking mechanism won't be released to allow the advance lever to be moved. Only way to be sure would be to rip the whole thing apart.



    Hope this helps...

    Russ
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2009
  10. ntenny

    ntenny Member

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    Oops, I killed it. While I was reassembling it to put away for later, when I had a bigger block of time, the screw shaft holding the advance lever broke off in its socket. Didn't take too much torque to do it---I think the metal must have been pretty marginal already.

    It can't be made usable at this point, even if I find and fix the original problem, without somehow working the old shaft out of the socket and fabbing a new one. And I can't easily cannibalise the lens for another project because of the electronic shutter. So RIP GSN, I guess. Bummer.

    On the bright side, I learned quite a lot about the innards of this camera. Thanks to everyone for all the information.

    -NT
     
  11. thisismyname09

    thisismyname09 Member

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    That sucks. Its always fun to pull things apart though. and in this case, at least you didn't lose much, seeing as it never worked in the first place. :tongue: