You've probably been told this before, but replacing seals is incredibly easy. It demands patience rather than skill, I change them on old SLRs as a matter of course.
Originally Posted by Roger Cole
Scrape the old gunk out with something like a cut down cocktail stick, clean the remains with a thinner - it doesn't have to be clinically clean, the new foam will seal the remains in place (I use methylated spirit, but nail varnish remover would do), and work the new seal slowly along from one end, remembering to cut a gap for the frame counter top left. An experienced hand could probably do one in twenty minutes at a push, but put some soothing music on, pour a glass of something nice, and take an hour thinking beautiful thoughts about restoring a camera from the junk pile. Some foam is so perished you can miss the removal stage and lay the new stuff on top. Don't use force at any stage, and you'll wonder why you never did it before.
Based on the instructions that came with the kit and looking at the camera I can't even tell where they all go!
Originally Posted by blockend
Roger, here are a couple links that may help. They are not for a Ricoh, but the concept, and placement of the seals, should be the same. It is on my Sears KS-2 (Ricoh XR-7).
It's important to mask off the area near the shutter so as to not get any debris in there.
I used toothpicks (wooden and plastic) to scrape out the old foam, and a bit of solvent on Q-tips to clean things a bit. I did not use a kit, or even foam, though may revisit my repair in the future.
For the channel (groove) in the body I used wool yarn. I cut a thick piece of felt for the area where the rear door is attached to the hinge. If you see no foam there, you're likely to see residue in the spot it used to be.
The less-brilliant thing I did was to use rubber cement to hold the yarn and felt in place. I applied it in the channel with a toothpick. Many kits have self-adhesive foam, so that should not be an issue. The reason I used rubber cement is that it can be removed easily if I did something wrong or decided to re-do it. I cleaned up the mirror-box area, but did not replace anything there yet.
So far I've had no problems.
You may not need adhesive foam. I use sticky and plain and once you get either in the channel properly, they aren't going anywhere once the back has been closed a few times. Same with string or wool, closing the back compresses it. Just make sure it isn't so thick as to strain the hinge, or hairy to mess with the shutter. Camera seals are not an exact science, hence the use of a lousy material like foam to make a light tight seal. Mirror foam is slightly different, I would use an adhesive version first time round but double sided tape will do the same job.
If you apply the wrong piece of foam in a channel, just butt another section up against it and cut to length. I replaced a few camera seals with the remains of other kits, short lengths strung together like sausages and they're completely tight.
If you're interested in selling the camera and lenses (I would prefer to just get the 50mm with it, but alas, if you do want to get rid of both) - then PM me pal, I reckon something could be arranged :)
Originally Posted by Nathan Riehl
That is, if you can find it, and perhaps give it a little test? Cheers.
And thank you to everyone who's replied, always appreciate the awesome advice you get here :)