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  1. #1

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    Suggestions for cleaning up a Bergheil

    I got a Bergheil listed as excellent condition from an ebay seller... and alas it's actually in what I'd consider maybe okay to good condition and the interior is quite gunky with dust, grease, hairs, etc. I can work at the gross bits inside the camera housing with cloths and Q-tips and the likes, but I'm wondering about suggestions for cleaning up the hardened lubricant that some errant soul put into the front standard and focusing rails. Is there a way to remove the front standard so you can clean gunky lube out from the shift mechanism, or can you use some kind of solvent to penetrate in and flush it out (methanol? I've got some relatively pure methanol in the form of 'eclipse cleaner' for lens cleaning).

    Also: when I'm cleaning the interior are there any suggestions for avoiding marring the painted finish? Any cleaning solvents that would be best? I guess I can spot test on the paint in an out of the way place but I figured someone here has done this before.

    I'm also a little miffed at the seller for representing it as basically excellent condition, as I would have bid a bit lower had I known I had a cleanup job ahead of me - and it was without a lens so I bought it primarily as a nice clean body to put my lens from another scruffy body on.. but still it's a pretty sweet little bergheil and it'll probably clean up alright.
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  2. #2
    athanasius80's Avatar
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    Perhaps kerosene, but definately spot test to see what it might do to the enamel finish. I know paint thinner and lacquer thinner (great degreasers) will take it right off. I'm not sure if Ronsonol lighter fluid (naptha to the rest of the world) will take off the enamel.

    Good luck!

  3. #3

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    I'd try IPA (Isopropyl alcohol) on a cotton bud, or on a toothpick for the rails. It'll dissolve gunk fairly easily and won't damage paintwork or enamel.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isopropyl_alcohol

  4. #4
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    A variety of cleaning fluids are useful, I use a liquid kitchen cleaner for getting the caked on grime off the interior, on some kitchen towelling or a cotton bud, then methylated spirits to clean up the tracking and paintwork.

    I'm a dab hand with Black nail polish to discretely touch up chipped paint work, these camera's are quite easy to clean upnicely.

    Ian

  5. #5

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    If the finish is shellac, alcohol is NOT the thing to use . It is the solvent for flake shellac.

  6. #6
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Harrison View Post
    If the finish is shellac, alcohol is NOT the thing to use . It is the solvent for flake shellac.
    These are metal cameras and the parts are painted or chrome so there's no shellac used.

    Ian

  7. #7

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    I cleaned up the rails on a Speed Graphic using a citrus degreaser I had handy for cleaning bike parts (in this case it was a spray can of Finish Line brand but any should do). It's pretty strong stuff so I'd want to test it on a small painted bit and keep it away from bellows and such. And, it'll make a mildewed camera smell orangy fresh ;-)

    Dan

  8. #8

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    Should have mentioned, I've used IPA to clean up parts of a Zeiss Ideal 9x12 (which I think is similar enough to a Bergheil).

  9. #9
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    I wouldn't waste good beer cleaning up a camera

    IPA - India Pale Ale

    Ian

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    I wouldn't waste good beer cleaning up a camera

    IPA - India Pale Ale

    Ian
    Yes drink the good beer and use Weissbier for the cleaning
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