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  1. #1
    agphotography's Avatar
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    Repair old 500CM or buy a new body?

    So I've been asking a bunch of questions over the months about my V-system kit, which I'm still using with some regularity and it still works most of the time, but dearly needs a good tune-up. Considering this is going to cost me at least $200 I started wondering if I should just buy a new body from KEH and go with that?

    Or should I just send it in to Odess piece by piece over time? (I would want to get my backs serviced as well, but I don't think my lenses need it)

    Just trying to figure out the most economical solution.
    - Abram

    Mamiya 7II / Hasselblad 500CM

  2. #2

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    Tough choice.
    Do the CLA and you are set for the next 10+ years.
    Get one from KEH and in a few months it may have a problem where it needs a CLA, or it may go for 10 years w/o a problem. You don't know the history of their used gear, and neither do they.

    BTW, I'm not sure if you meant buy a NEW body or a used body from KEH. I know KEH from their used gear, I did not know they sold NEW stuff.

    Yeah I agree with you, getting your entire kit serviced is goina be EXPENSIVE. Personally I would hold off on servicing until you have a problem with a specific piece of gear, unless you're a pro, then you need to do preventive maintenance so it won't fail during a job.
    Have you checked Flutot's, they are down in Southern Calif. http://flutotscamerarepair.com/
    You can also call International Camera Technicians in Mountain View, up in the SF Bay Area. His prices are similar to David's, but he isn't a Hasselblad specialist like David. He's an older guy, so best to call him on the phone 650-961-5825.

    Number your backs, so you can keep track of them. Then if you have problems with a specific back you can ID that back and just send that one in.

    I'm also in the same situation about servicing my gear.
    Since I'm not making money off my gear (as in being a pro photog), I'm taking the wait and see approach, vs. preventive maintenance.

  3. #3
    agphotography's Avatar
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    Good points all around.

    I definitely was not intending on buying brand new, I was just meaning a "newer" replacement body as mine is from the early 1970s (I was thinking of getting a late 500CM as KEH labels these specifically). The stuff I have works but I do occasionally get inconsistent frame spacing on one of my backs (now if only I could remember which one.... ). The body definitely needs a tuneup to re-lube everything and replace the rebound foam as it's dried to oblivion. It flakes off every time I take a shot and leaves bits of foam on my mirror and focusing screen. I figure that should be addressed.

    Flutots specifically states they DO NOT work on Hasselblads, so I guess they won't be too keen on helping me lol!

    I figured David had the track record I was looking for, and when compared to places I found out here in Southern California his prices were very comparable if not slightly cheaper. It just adds up when you've got a body, three backs and two lenses that need to be tuned up.
    I figured the body would hang out with me for a while, and the backs would almost make more sense just to buy newer ones anyways, same thing for the lenses.

    I'm just planning for the future with this stuff as it doesn't get used in my paid work, it's just for personal projects.
    - Abram

    Mamiya 7II / Hasselblad 500CM

  4. #4

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    Yeah sounds like your body needs servicing.

    Problem when buying used backs is you do not know the history of the backs.
    So same situation, you could get a back that will need servicing in a few months, or it could go for years.
    You can hedge your bet by buying NEWER backs, if you can identify the approx age of the backs. I think you can ID the year of the CF lenses, but I do not know how to ID the year of the back.

    Lenses also depends on what you have. The grease in the older C lenses are probably about 40 years old, and dry and gummy, CF lenses maybe 20 years old. Personally, if you have C lenses, I would replace the C lens with a CF, and hope for 10 more years of trouble free use. Then sell the C lens to offset the cost of the CF lens.

  5. #5
    agphotography's Avatar
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    Yeah I have two C lenses that are in good shape cosmetically and functionally but I'm sure the internal grease is definitely getting pretty try, they are really heavy to focus. My plan is to eventually update to CF lenses when I have the budget.

    I guess it makes sense to just repair what I have because then it will be a known factor and I'll easily get a long life out of it.
    - Abram

    Mamiya 7II / Hasselblad 500CM

  6. #6

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    Contact Hasselblad USA in New Jersey to see if they still offer the speck to check camera service. Let Hasselblad figure out which backs need to be repaired. Your 500c body if it has never been serviced might require a complete overhaul, rather than just CLA. Send them your lenses as well. It will save you time and effort in the long run to get everything serviced at one time.

    I sent them my Hasselblad kit which consisted of a 1962 500c, and C12 back from 1960, and a 80 mm C Lens from 1958. Four weeks and $500 later I received back a wonderful operating camera kit. The camera was covered for 6 months if I had a problem with it.

    If you are wondering why I didn't use David Odess instead, Mr. Odess doesn't really like working on Hasselblad equipment that was made earlier than 1960. I had a good conversation with him about the camera, but since the lens and back were so old I just sent it off to New Jersey instead. Let me add that after talking to Mr. Odess on the phone for 20 minutes he did tell me to send in my camera to him, and he would have repaired it. David seems to be a good guy.

    Get your own stuff fix, don't buy more stuff from KEH that will have to be fixed too.

    Good Luck!

  7. #7
    Richard Sintchak (rich815)'s Avatar
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    Repair old 500CM or buy a new body?

    Send to Odess, get it done right. Then go shoot with confidence.
    -----------------------

    "Well, my photos are actually much better than they look..."

    Richard S.
    Albany, CA (San Francisco bay area)

    My Flickr River of photographs
    http://flickriver.com/photos/rich815...r-interesting/

    My Photography Website
    http://www.lightshadowandtone.com

  8. #8

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    ... or deal with the local Hassy repair guy, Steve Choi at Steves Camera in Culver City.

    http://www.stevecamera.com/service.html

  9. #9
    Mark Fisher's Avatar
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    When I bought my kit, I bought camera, back and an 80 from Odess just so I had the basics freshly overhauled and mechanically like new. My other lenses I bought used and they've been fine. Backs are another story. I'd say get it overhauled and be confident that it is good.
    Your first 10,000 pictures are the worst - HCB

    www.markjamesfisher.com

  10. #10
    agphotography's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianShaw View Post
    ... or deal with the local Hassy repair guy, Steve Choi at Steves Camera in Culver City.

    http://www.stevecamera.com/service.html
    I did talk to them, and the price they quoted me was higher than David's, I had heard they were slightly less expensive, but the quote was about $100 higher for both the body and the film backs than Odess' was...

    David just got back to me via email, and he suggested that I do eventually have everything serviced, but that's going to cost me a good chunk so I suppose I'll start with the body and go from there. 2/3 backs work normally at least.
    - Abram

    Mamiya 7II / Hasselblad 500CM

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