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  1. #1

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    Hasselblad jamming - how bad of a problem is this?

    I'm totally new to the world of Hasselblad and in fact, I don't own one. I'm curious about the infamous jam issue since I may be interested in getting one.

    I hear, one of the down side of Hasselblad 500 series is it's tendency to occasionally jam. According to what I read so far, this is due to lens and body needing to be in cocked state when removing and attaching. Should one trip and the other one not, it constitutes a "jammed" state. (am I understanding this correctly?)

    I read, if the lens "fires" while detached, all one needs to do is to use a coin and turn a screw to cock it then all is fine. (is this right?)

    If body fires when lens isn't attached, what do you do?? Just wind?

    If one is sloooooooooooooow in attaching the lens, there is a possibility that lens might fire a split second before it is properly attached to the body. Since now the lens is "fired" and the body is "cocked", there is a problem. One cannot remove the lens in this state. (is this right?)

    I read, then one has to remove the back, slide/push the curtain, and carefully turn a screw inside the body (near the lens?) to cock the body, then remove it, then reattach. (is this right?)

    Now, the big question - it is so hard for non-owner to gauge how bad/frequent these issues actually occur. I can't possibly buy a second body and lens just in case - but these are professional cameras. It can't be that bad and still be useful in professional setting is it?

    With internet tendency to magnify problem far more than benefit (because ones with problems proclaim it louder and ones without problems just don't say anything), I'm pretty much clueless at this point.

    Can someone in APUG land help me out?
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  2. #2
    Jeff Bannow's Avatar
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    I've only jammed our Hasselblad twice since we got it two years ago, and both were my own fault. I was able to recover both in the field, using simple tools and instructions I keep in my camera bag.

    It's a great camera system - I would highly recommend it. Have the camera CLAed by a professional and take decent care of it and the Hasselblad will treat you well.
    - Jeff (& sometimes Eva, too) - http://www.jeffbannow.com

  3. #3

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    I've had Hasselblads for many years and they do sometimes jam. invest in an unjamming tool. It has two protected ends. One for the camera body and one for the lens. Don't go out without one and a dark-slide. You can't fight Murphy's Law.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/

  4. #4
    Jeff Bannow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffreyg View Post
    I've had Hasselblads for many years and they do sometimes jam. invest in an unjamming tool. It has two protected ends. One for the camera body and one for the lens. Don't go out without one and a dark-slide. You can't fight Murphy's Law.
    Good idea - I use the tool as well, though it is a bit heavy, so it stays in the car along with a small jeweler's screwdriver.

    Make sure to print out the unjamming instructions to keep along with the tool.
    - Jeff (& sometimes Eva, too) - http://www.jeffbannow.com

  5. #5

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    What Jeff said.

    I have yet to jam a Hasselblad, and i have been using those for many decades.
    Reports of jammed Hasselblads are, without fail, reports of either run down fifth-hand equipment that has never been serviced, or of operator error.
    So never buy a camera (that applies to all brands) from someone who is too cheap to have it serviced but rather sells it on when it stops working properly. Have equipment serviced when needed (when that is depends on how nuch t is used). And read the (extremely thin) user manual and remember the little there is too remember.
    Then you will never have a problem.


    Now your other questions:

    - Yes. If a lens fires while off camera, all you need is a coin to cock it again.

    - When the body fires without lens attached, you simple recock the boddy. If there was a loaded film magazine on the camera, the frame in the gate will probably be lost, so leave the magazine on when you recock the thing so you wind that exposed frame on and get a 'fresh' one in the gate.

    - No. You cannot be too slow in attaching a lens. There is no such possibility of things happening as in your description.

    - Yes, you can turn the axle coupling camera to lens from behind, through the rear of the camera. Should you ever need to (which you will not).
    But if things happen as in your description, that will not help. Another screw must then be used to disengage the camera's key from the lens. After which it has to be reset and adjusted again: a job for a qualified technician trained to do so.


    - The BIG QUESTION:
    I have said so above already, but though the internet is full of this nonsense, the chance of running into a problem is about as big as winning the Multi Million Mega Jackpot in a lottery. Though many like to think there is a chance they will wn that jackpot, i wouldn't hold my breath waiting for it. So do not worry!


    P.S.

    The "unjamming tool" is a Big Waste of Money.
    Not only because you will never need it (peope who do should really stop and think, and find out what they are doing wrong). But mostly because you do not need to spend Big Money on a thing that does what any cheapo small screwdriver does even better.
    I.e.: don't fall prey to those who sow fear to reap protection money.

  6. #6

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    Mine were purchased new and when serviced it was by Hasselblad. The jamming occurred with extension tubes. It's best to use the unjamming tool if necessary since it is made for that purpose and securely fits the parts.

    Yes I did correctly attach the tubes and lens in the correct order.

  7. #7

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    So where did you get those tubes?
    With properly maintained gear, you will not run into problems, unless you create them yourself.

    The unjamming tool is made to part you with more of your money. It preys on unfounded fears.
    You will not find such a part in Hasselblad's catalogues nor service manuals.

    P.S.

    Here's a thing to think about for a while: reports about jammed Hasselblads abound on the net.
    Yet they all are about 500 C(...) cameras.

    All other Hasselblad V-System reflex cameras use the very same lens to camera interface, use the same extension tubes, and bellows, so should suffer the same jams.
    Yet no (that is: no) reports at all about jams and unjamming of 200/2000-series or EL-series cameras.

    Why?
    Because you can't use that 'trick' on any of those cameras. So you will not need, because cannot use an Unjamming Tool.
    So no market for such an Extremely Silly Thing for all those cameras, and magically, no jams occuring either...? What a coincidence...
    Last edited by Q.G.; 12-28-2010 at 04:17 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #8
    Jeff Bannow's Avatar
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    The first time I jammed the camera, I was fooling around with it (it was new to me). I fixed it with a screwdriver.

    The second time, my wife started to remove the lens, then handed it to me to finish. This is a bad idea. I accidentally fired the shutter with my hand. We had to disengage the gearing to remove the lens - not fun, but we were able to fix it in the middle of the desert with a jewelers screwdriver.

    So, don't be stupid like me and all will be fine!
    - Jeff (& sometimes Eva, too) - http://www.jeffbannow.com

  9. #9

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    Well... I am not going to buy it brand new so the moral of the story is, be prepared but don't be scared....

    Thanks all.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  10. #10

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    Have a 500C, two 500C transitions, a 500CM, and a ELM. Not once a jam. (Wish I could pass up bodies that sell for $125 or less).

    Mike

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