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  1. #1

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    Contax Mirror Slip Repair

    So I've purchased two used Contax cameras in the past week (an ST and RX) and BOTH of them have the mirror slip problem (what luck huh?). I read somewhere that applying a hair dryer to the underside of the mirror and then pushing it back into place works...and it does, for the time being.

    My question is, where would I send these cameras for repair? Will the place actually fix the problem permanently or will they simply apply a new layer of adhesive (or something to that effect)? How much does the service run and what is the approximate lead time? Is there a way I can permanently fix it myself?

    I'm really bummed that both of the cameras have this problem. I had heard about it, but didn't think it was that common. This is my first experience with Contax bodies and lenses.

    Thanks!
    Patrick

    PS. I didn't realize that this was my first post...I've been reading the forum for a while and have appreciate all the help it's given me!

  2. #2

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    Patrick, My RX developed that problem a few years ago. I don't know what city you live in but here in NYC I took it to Panorama Camera repair on 30th St in Manhattan. It is a Russian mom and pop repair place. Once they fixed it I havent had the problem since. (knock on wood). I forget the cost, I think it was about $125.00. He gives an estimate before he does the repair. Good luck.

  3. #3
    frdrx's Avatar
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    You can attempt to re-attach the mirror yourself, but you'll run a risk of breaking it. I've done this repair on a few Contaxes (RTS II, 139, but not the RX), and it's pretty straightforward. However, if you're not a hundred percent confident, I recommend that you leave it to someone who is.

    It is possible to slowly cut through the adhesive between the mirror and its carrier using a razor blade. Both surfaces must then be carefully cleaned before thin double sided sticky tape of the same thickness as the original (no foam tape) can be applied. Correct focus alignment should then be checked and if need be adjusted with the mirror rest screw.
    Fred

  4. #4

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    Thanks so much for the replies.

    Taslim...do you know how the repair shop fixed the camera? Did they just apply more adhesive tape? If I was going to spend over $100, I would want them to permanently fix it somehow...although I'm not sure how.

    frdrx...So, if I were to do it myself, you would recomend slicing through the adhesive, taking the mirror out and applying more adhesive tape? I would be woried about not getting the same exact thinkness tape, resulting in out of focus photos. There is a way to set the height of the mirror with a screw?

  5. #5

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    I have a Contax 167, and the AX, and more than satisfied with both of them. I have been checking re the ST and the RX, hoping to buy one of them eventually, but I was not aware of this mirror slip problem. It is now putting doubts in my mind about having one. Is it a fairly common problem with Contax cameras ? Anyone have any ideas as to what causes it, or is it just the ageing process, i.e. same as foam in cameras.

  6. #6
    frdrx's Avatar
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    Sorry for the delayed response. Yes, the repair is done by replacing old old tape with new one. I would advise to buy double sided sticky tape that is strong and can withstand higher temperatures. The problem may return in the future, but not any time soon. The new tape, if chosen well, will last for many years unless you leave your camera to bake in your car in summer. As you said, thickness of the tape is very important, but it is not too difficult to obtain tapes with approximately the right thickness. 3M, for example, offers a whole range of them. Only avoid adhesive foam of any sort. Slight errors in focussing can be easily adjusted by turning a screw, which is usually accessible after removing the bottom plate.
    Fred

  7. #7
    frdrx's Avatar
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    Don't worry, pityacka. If the mirrors of your cameras are in place, they will likely stay there for the foreseeable future. All you need to do is check that your mirrors aren't creeping and have them re-attached if they are. You can even do it yourself. It is quite a common problem, especially in older bodies that were subjected to high temperatures. From my observation, mirror creep in Contax and Yashica bodies is a gradual process that can be caught well before the mirror moves out so far that it can hit the rear element of the lens, potentially causing damage.
    Fred

  8. #8

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    fdrx, Fred, Thanks for those two postings re the mirror problem, and I will note details and store for future use, if necessary. The problem put me off for the time being, and as a result I spent my money on a Minolta Dynax 9 + VC-9 grip to go with other Minoltas that I have. In the not too distant future I will probably be looking at Contaxes again.
    When Contax were operating in the UK I spoke to one of their technicians by phone. A Fraser ALLEN. I came across his name again on a Contax site. I sent an email to his new employers hoping to get a reply and details from him about how bad mirror slip was. (After all him being a Contax technician he would have some insight). However, I did not get an email in reply.
    Thanks for your posts and advice.
    Pityacka (Fred, also)



 

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