Yashica Mat 124G Repair Question

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by bvy, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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    I'm looking at a Yashica Mat 124G camera for $200 (auction site). Seller claims pristine condition and very recent CLA (seals were replaced). One flaw that he mentions is that the fastest shutter speeds are off by a stop -- e.g. 1/500 clocks at 1/250, etc. As I occasionally shoot fast moving subjects, this is a concern. But on the other hand, maybe most of these cameras develop this problem as they age (does anyone know?), and I'd have been none the wiser otherwise.

    So I'm wondering: How extensive a repair is this? Is it something I can do myself (probably not)? Should I just keep shopping? Or just not worry about it?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    In the UK a service on a Yashicamat works out at £50 ($80), it's usually a little bit less in the US, however you shoud be able to get a good 124 or 124g for $200 that doesn't need the shutter servicing.

    My service guy strips, cleans, then rebuilds the shutter so it's not a quick job but you do get a shutter that will be good for quite a number of years.

    Ian
     
  3. mgb74

    mgb74 Subscriber

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    Shutter speeds at high end are often off, even after CLA, though a full stop is a bit much. Was his full stop comment based on shutter speed tests done by the shop that did the CLA? Or was it an approximation? Who performed the CLA?

    Shutter service alone should run about $80-100 (try Paul Ebel or Flutot's) but if you had a recent CLA then a) it wasn't done correctly, b) another servicing of the shutter won't help, or c) it's got a problem that will result in off speeds again after service.

    I agree with Ian that you can get a nice 124 or 124g that doesn't need servicing for $200, but I don't think you can get one with a recent CLA (by a reputable repair person) for that price.
     
  4. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Subscriber

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    Mark Hama is THE Yashicamat person in the US as far as I know. He's also local to me. I've corresponded with him but ended up getting a camera that didn't need service. He quoted me $155 for a CLA on a 124G last year. He also sells CLAed Yashicamats on eBay with a six month warranty for, IIRC, about $450. Pricey to be sure for a 124G but you'll have a camera that's right and needs no work, with a warranty. (He doesn't have any listed now but does from time to time.)

    I don't know if this is common. I haven't noticed it with mine nor have I had the shutter timed, but I also don't use the highest speeds that often. My feeling would be to either spend the same (or a bit less, I paid $158 for my 124 non-G which I prefer anyway) for one that isn't that far off or spend a bit more for one with an effective CLA.

    Here's Mark's web site in case you are interested in asking about servicing the shutter:

    http://markhama.home.comcast.net/~markhama/
     
  5. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    There's a 124just been listed here in the Classified, $180 is a good price for one in excellent condition, the 124G has gold plated contacts and is essentially the same camera.

    Ian
     
  6. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Subscriber

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    Yeah, they're pretty much the same. I'd take a nice 124G.

    The reasons I (slightly) prefer the non-G (which is more rare) - I so far haven't used flash and, though I may, it isn't a high priority enough matter to make gold contacts a big point. The pre-G model is apparently somewhat different internally, and is rumored to have a stronger film wind mechanism. It does sound different. More of a metallic "zing" sound on winding. The pre-G also has lots of chrome finish from before the days when black finish meant "pro." I just think it looks better! :wink:

    Honestly, I like my 124 so much every time I see either a 124 or 124G at a good price I'm sorely tempted to buy a second to keep loaded with different film. They're small and light enough I could just keep two plus my LunaPro SBC (a large meter) in my small shoulder bag. But I just committed to a Maimya 645Pro system so I'd best not.
     
  7. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    There's more plastic in the 124g, I would like another 124 (in the UK) as I leave mine in Turkey and my Rolleiflex is mint so not ideal for genral touting around.

    Ian
     
  8. Dan Daniel

    Dan Daniel Subscriber

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    bvy, get the one in the classifieds here! That looks very good. The price is right, the description sounds like someone who knows what cameras are for.

    A 'CLA' is much more than replacing seals. Replacing seals is a hack job, I could teach my mother to do it in ten minutes. Adjusting shutter speeds takes a bit more tear-down, and sending a camera out with a full stop slow speeds is not adjusted. Which, considering what CLA stands for, is a significant omission!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 12, 2012
  9. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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    Thanks for the replies. I let the auction one go. Thinking about the one in the classifieds. I need to research the difference between the two. I was hoping to use flash for some things...
     
  10. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    Overexposure is very common on the highest speed with ANY leaf shutter. and a full stop is not unusual
     
  11. Dan Daniel

    Dan Daniel Subscriber

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    The only drawback to the 124 compared to the 124G is the silly checkerboard vinyl they used! Other than that, it is the same lewns, same shutter. Only a better wind mechanism, less plastic all around. The 124 G is a sheeple camera; the 124 is a classic :smile: Don't be a sheeple, go for the better camera!

    Remove the vinyl and get some griptac covering and you'll be in heaven.

    Compared to ebay, when buying in a place like this people are more exposed, have more investment in their reputation, and hence much more willing to make certain that a buyer is satisfied.

    John Koehrer is right that leaf shutters will be slower than stated at highest speed. A full stop is the far side of out of spec for 1/500, but after that you should expect better. Compur's stated tolerance for 1/250 and 1/500 is 20%. The OP said that higher speeds- plural- were a full stop off.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 12, 2012
  12. michael stevens

    michael stevens Member

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    Ian, do you mind me asking who you use for this?

    Thanks.
     
  13. CGW

    CGW Restricted Access

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    Sorry but there are just too many alarms clanging as I read this. The particulars describe a fishy 'Mat: pristine, recent CLA, new light seals but an abiding problem("beats me, you solve it"). Be patient. Keep shopping.
     
  14. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    I use Black on White in Bristol, £50 was for a shutter service, they did find a twist in the focus mechanism on my 124but after discussion we both agreed it wasn't worth fixing that as it would be unecomonic.

    Ian