Fleenor is the "best" indeed, but he has a very long turnaround (at least when I had to send my 2.8F for CLA), when I checked in December 2012, he had a 11 week turnaround time.
Originally Posted by selmslie
I ended up using Brian Mickelboro in London, the camera is flawless now, great service and very speedy (1.5 week turnaround)
- but he has limited supply of modernizing parts like the bright-screen option and cannot fix/replace an old meter (very few do that anyway) and so on.
Where are you located? Krikor Maralian (krimarphoto.com) is great, and very fast -- I mean you will have it back within a week from when you send it. I have had several Rolleis serviced by him. He's in New Jersey, USA.
I know how you feel, though -- now you have to spend a fair amount of extra money on a camera you thought was in perfect shape. Very discouraging.
One other thing to check (didn't see it mentioned). Not all Rollei's are loaded the same way, regarding rollers over and under the film.
I don't know the details on this, but my 3.5T and 3.5F are loaded differently. Be sure the film is in the right place.
A simple thing to check is to see if the elements of both lenses are screwed in tightly. I had a similar issue on one of my tlrs and came to find that the taking lens, which I removed the front element to clean out some dust, was a few turns away from tight. Tightened it up and all was well. If this is the case and its happening at infinity, would be the taking lens. Good luck.
My 3,5F had sharpness issues when I bought it, so I sent it back to the camera store and they let their Rollei specialist fix it. When it came back the focus was spot on. I've had 30 or more Rollei TLR's over the years (and still own 15-20) and the 3,5F with Planar beats them all when we talk about sharpness. I still love the Tessar and Triotar for their own personalities though.
Rolleiflex Repair Woes
A couple of years ago, I purchased a 1950s Rolleiflex 3.5 Tessar that was sharp, but dim, so I took it to Krikor Maralian to have a new Maxwell screen installed. He installed the screen and "adjusted the focus" and returned it to me. The resulting photographs were not sharp and I returned the camera to Krikor 5 times (I drove to his shop, about 1.5 hours). He was unable fix the camera's focus problem, suggested some cameras "cannot be repaired" and refused to refund 100% of the Maxwell screen price because the screen was now "used". I had previously purchased a 2.8 Planar model from Krikor that continues to work great, so I was surprised and disappointed that he could not repair my camera and chose instead to lose a good customer for the sake of the the cost of a Maxwell screen. I kept the screen, still have the camera that I do not use, and will never again send a camera to Krikor.
Buyer beware, I guess....
Originally Posted by Nick Merritt
Are you sure that it wasn't the maxwell-screen that caused the issue?
- Maybe you were better off with the original one, albeit dim. (who knows, maybe with that screen, it's tack sharp) ^^
I always support a CLA on a new piece of gear after I initially check it out. BUT before sending it in, try removing the focusing hood, put like an 8x loupe directly on the ground glass (gently) for focusing. Hang a newspaper or an eye chart on a wall and run a bunch of test exposures making sure to get your camera as square, plumb and level to the target as possible.
Also, if it's been awhile since you've had your eyes checked you might consider doing that. I was surprised at one point when I discovered using a corrective diopter in my focusing hood or viewfinder made a huge difference in my image sharpness. It creeps up on you, ya know?
"If I knew I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself". Eube Blake
If it is a Rollei T series? if so there is no bottom rear roller. on the hother series Rollei's you need to go under the back bottom roller when threading the film to have it register correctly. It assists in keeping the film tight.
Harry does very nice work, I think the turn around is about 8 weeks now.