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Thread: F3 Problem?

  1. #11
    clayne's Avatar
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    You'll only care when you're actually using the meter. In which case it'll be fairly easy to figure out what the numbers actually mean.
    Stop worrying about grain, resolution, sharpness, and everything else that doesn't have a damn thing to do with substance.

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  2. #12

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    What a grand bunch of guys you are!

    Mick, good to read about your self same problem (if you get my meaning). The five years part has encouraged me no end - The F3 certainly feels right in the hand.

    My plans are to use the Nikon F for B&W and the F3 (may be) for colour.

    Once again I'm indepted to you all.

    PS Unclemack - thanks for your indepth posts; unfortunately my eyes are not up to it neither is my courage level, but I appreciate your time and thought - thanks

    Best wishes to all

    Alistair

  3. #13

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    Hi,

    I switched on the F3 last evening (I have been using it regularly) and guess what? The meter LCD is perfect! the figures showed as they should! At first I couldn't 'get my head around it' It was with some trepidation that I switched it off and back on - but I worried for nothing! It is a perfect screen and figures all showing as the should, both in A and manual...

    Happy days

    Best wishes

    Alistair

  4. #14

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    Common F3 problem. Very common in F4 as well. LCD is failing

  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrewkirkby View Post
    Common F3 problem. Very common in F4 as well. LCD is failing
    Hi Andrew,

    Thanks for the reply. Have you seen Mick Fagan's message in this thread (#10). It seems some camera were/are like it from new.

    Interesting eh?

    Alistair

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by alistair.o View Post
    Hi Andrew,

    Thanks for the reply. Have you seen Mick Fagan's message in this thread (#10). It seems some camera were/are like it from new.

    Interesting eh?

    Alistair
    Well, it is an inherent problem with older manufacturing techniques used in the production of monochrome LCDs. Essentially there is a conductive material which joins the LCD cells (one of the bars of a number) to the connections which are then soldered to on the outside of the LCD package- this conductive material fails over time and causes the LCD cell to go dim/not work. Back then this was relatively new technology.

    I also repair analogue synthesizers and this is a common problem on gear from the 1980s, especially from Japan. I believe the parts were all made by the same company (Alps)

  7. #17
    CGW
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    Nikon.ca recently tried to fix my early F3 whose LCD was "graying" but otherwise legible. My other, newer F3's readout is crisp and black, so why not try to get its older brother up to scratch? After a week in the shop for this fix and a thorough CLA, it came back with a replaced LCD that looked exactly the same(!?). They kindly wrote off the $200+ bill(that included a raft of small part replacements)because they were unable to remedy the problem. A tech explained that the fading/dropout issue isn't the LCD per se but rather a small circuit board/strip that's no longer available. Find one of those and you'll have your fix;otherwise, don't waste $ on replacement LCDs for your F3. Ordinary fading isn't the fault of the LCD.
    Last edited by CGW; 08-15-2010 at 11:44 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #18
    Nicholas Lindan's Avatar
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    LCD failure usually manifests itself as bleeding of the characters and/or odd black splodges.

    Segments that fade in and out are usually connector problems. They will change over time and with changes in humidity and temperature. Often just loosening and tightening of the LCD frame will help (though it may sometimes makes things worse).

    It is possible to remove the LCD and gently clean off the zebra strip and circuit board. You can do a 'drag wipe' on the LCD contacts: wet a folded strip of lens tissue in 90+% isopropyl alcohol and drag it across the contact area, letting the weight of the lens tissue do the cleaning. You can do several 'drag wipes' without doing damage. I have used soap and water and an ultrasonic cleaner for the zebra strip - a very light wiping with alcohol should be ok. The circuit board contacts can be cleaned with a light brush with a soft pink eraser and then isopropyl and a swab. Putting things back can be a minor nightmare: you have to get the zebra strip back in position so that it is straight across the contacts. Swiss watch-repair tweezers, miniature screwdrivers and a 10x jewelers' loupe - or something equivalent - are almost mandatory if you want better than luck odds.
    DARKROOM AUTOMATION
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    http://www.darkroomautomation.com/da-main.htm

  9. #19
    CGW
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicholas Lindan View Post
    LCD failure usually manifests itself as bleeding of the characters and/or odd black splodges.

    Segments that fade in and out are usually connector problems. They will change over time and with changes in humidity and temperature. Often just loosening and tightening of the LCD frame will help (though it may sometimes makes things worse).

    It is possible to remove the LCD and gently clean off the zebra strip and circuit board. You can do a 'drag wipe' on the LCD contacts: wet a folded strip of lens tissue in 90+% isopropyl alcohol and drag it across the contact area, letting the weight of the lens tissue do the cleaning. You can do several 'drag wipes' without doing damage. I have used soap and water and an ultrasonic cleaner for the zebra strip - a very light wiping with alcohol should be ok. The circuit board contacts can be cleaned with a light brush with a soft pink eraser and then isopropyl and a swab. Putting things back can be a minor nightmare: you have to get the zebra strip back in position so that it is straight across the contacts. Swiss watch-repair tweezers, miniature screwdrivers and a 10x jewelers' loupe - or something equivalent - are almost mandatory if you want better than luck odds.
    With respect, that sounds like a recipe for disaster. I'll take a factory-trained Nikon tech's word that its an electronic circuit component issue involving an obsolete part that's no longer available--not necessarily dirty contacts. Had that been the "fix," I suspect they would have done it on my F3. They don't jerk people around.
    Last edited by CGW; 08-15-2010 at 01:53 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  10. #20
    Nicholas Lindan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CGW View Post
    that sounds like a recipe for disaster ... Had that been the "fix," I suspect they would have done it on my F3.
    Maybe not. They also know it is a recipe for disaster, one best avoided. "Sorry, we can't get the part anymore" is a great excuse among the technoid fraternity, eliminates all further discussion and customer goes away satisfied, at least as satisfied as they are likely to get. The whole module assembly that they would normally replace - circuit board, LCD & flex cable - probably isn't available so it isn't really a fib.

    There is also the cost issue of doing a labor intensive repair. At the $100/hour Nikon is likely charging for OoW repair the job would cost $150 - 200 and one can buy a perfectly good F3 body for that - if not an F4.
    Last edited by Nicholas Lindan; 08-15-2010 at 01:45 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    DARKROOM AUTOMATION
    f-Stop Timers - Enlarging Meters
    http://www.darkroomautomation.com/da-main.htm

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