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  1. #21
    Jeff L's Avatar
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    If the back isn't close then it likely won't hold film flat. I would have thought there'd be serious light leaks though.

  2. #22

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    Apr 2005
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    Maine, USA
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    The first TLR I bought was from a woman who said that it had belonged to her husband who had loved it. It was an Automat in beautiful cosmetic condition, and the shutter seemed to be right on its speeds. I then had to take a very long trip, and was not able to test the camera (I have learned to avoid situations like that since then). When I got back I ran a test roll through it, and it had focus problems like yours. I felt it was really too late to return it, and it was the first medium format camera I owned. So, I took it to Steve Grimes, he looked at it, said that the rear lens element group had separated and somebody had recemented it clumsily. It did not look that way from a simple inspection by a non-specialist, but Grimes could tell. He had a rear element group that would fit, so he replaced the faulty group and it worked much better, but was still not as sharp as it should have been at wider apertures. The lens groups on Rolleis really should be factory matched. I eventually sold the camera on ebay with its problem fully disclosed. I think I have since read that the Tessars on Automats were more prone to separation than the Xenars. Hopefully, your camera's problem is just a film flatness issue.

  3. #23

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    Mar 2010
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    My Rolleiflex Automat is with Paul Ebel right now for a CLA and has been for around 3 weeks. He said it would take about 4 weeks. I'll update you with my experience when I get it back. Thus far, he has been a pleasure to work with and always answers emails in a timely fashion.

    Good luck with your Rollie.

  4. #24

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    Dec 2009
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    I actually emailed Paul this afternoon and hope to hear back from him soon. It's good to hear he's a nice guy at least.

  5. #25
    greybeard's Avatar
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    rear lens element group had separated and somebody had recemented it clumsily

    For what it is worth, the first "assignment" given to me by the local newspaper (in 1964!) was done with a borrowed, pristine-appearing Rolleiflex. All of the resulting pictures looked like the examples, and they were taken in full sunlight on Tri-X, so the aperture was probably either f/16 or f/22. The problem, of course, was lens separation, but I got ragged on thoroughly for not knowing how to focus, until I pointed out that the focusing lens is different from the taking lens on a TLR, and the former was in perfect condition...

    It will be interesting to see what the repairman has to say in the current case.

  6. #26

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    Dec 2009
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    I showed Paul the photos and he seems to think that repairing the latch pin will solve the problem. I hope he's correct!

  7. #27
    Rolleiflexible's Avatar
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    I have great respect for Paul and I send him
    all of my Rolleiflex work (which is quite a lot).
    You've chosen one of the best.

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