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  1. #1

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    Is There a Classic SLR That Will Function Correctly in Cold Weather?

    This year, I have been able to get out and do a fair amount of cold-weather shooting. I have been getting some excellent opportunities for interesting shots...except that my *second* Canon F-1N just developed a slow mirror problem. I just sent an F-1N out for repair (quite costly and extensive) for the mirror staying up too long, and, today, a second F-1N is beginning to exhibit the same problem. I am very frustrated and disappointed (as you may imagine). I had some "once in a lifetime" shots today of the historic snowstorm, and the last several are sure to be overexposed.

    Anyway, what is going on here? I thought the F-1N was supposed to be a great camera for cold weather shooting? In most cases, I have been shooting for 45 minutes to an hour in temperatures in the 15-30-degree (F) range. I usually do not go out more than twice in a day. In my view, a better camera should be able to handle this. Again, this is very disappointing.

    PS: I have an Olympus OM-2N on the way. How do these cameras fare in colder weather? After what has happened with my F-1Ns, I will be sure to send this camera out for a CLA before I start using it.
    Last edited by FilmOnly; 02-07-2010 at 03:08 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: typo

  2. #2
    Ektagraphic's Avatar
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    I have a Nikkormat FTn that has gone stock for me so far in the cold. It is a great camera.
    Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time

  3. #3

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    My original Canon F-1 does great in the cold. I'm not sure what happen to yours.

    Jeff

  4. #4
    rhmimac's Avatar
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    http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography...l/reliable.htm

    if there's anything more reliable than this? They tested it from -30°C to 60°C they tell us, so could there be some worn parts in there now?

    rhmimac

  5. #5

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    Over the years, lubes dry up and become thicker, cold only makes that worse. It was pretty common to have cameras and lenses relubed for real cold weather, 0F and below. Ever ready cases help the camera body retain some heat, and a handwarmer helps too.

  6. #6

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    I agree, for 0F and below, a re-lube or CLA should be done. This type of weather is a more rigorous test. However, about 15F is the coldest either of my two F-1Ns have seen. I am even considering getting rid of my F-1N/Canon gear. I could see one camera perhaps having a problem, but not two. Also, my 55/1.2 (non-asph) is exhibiting some barrel distortion. This, too, is very disappointing.

  7. #7
    Ektagraphic's Avatar
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    Good luck getting a meter to work in very cold temperatures. I have only worked at probably 30 F or a little below. My little Sekonic was going strong.
    Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time

  8. #8
    Leighgion's Avatar
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    I think you're focusing too much on the camera model's basic reputation and downplaying the condition of the actual camera in question.

    No matter how finely built and designed a mechanical camera may be, it's a machine subject to the encroachment of age and needs maintenance to remain in good fighting trim. There's nothing mild about 15F -- that's 17 degrees below freezing. More than cold enough thicken lubricants and bind up the function of mechanical parts that aren't up to the punishment.

    No Canon F-1N is young anymore. A CLA is pretty much assumed if you want to punish one, and even then, it's not going to guarantee that everything will work smoothly under harsh conditions.

  9. #9

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    Your camera needs a CLA. One every thirty years will do it

  10. #10
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    I've had good luck shooting for hours at a time in -15 to 5 C with my Canon F-1s (old) and Nikon Fs. My AE-1Ps actually seemed to do OK too, though I used them on the 5 C day, not the -15 C day.

    Wear gloves...WITH the fingertips intact!
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

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