Thursday, January 14, 2010

one cent camera repair

My Soviet Leica-copy Fed-1g has an accurate rangefinder and shutter, and a terrific Tessar-type lens. It also has an odd problem with film alignment. The sprocket holes intrude into the image area on one side of the frame. It may be a case of overly-generous manufacturing tolerances, or perhaps it is just that modern film cartridges don't quite fit the camera.

I was able to push the film cartridge down into the compartment and the film would track ok if I maintained some pressure. I decided that what I needed was a thin spacer to take up the extra space over the cartridge. It turned out that a penny fit perfectly in the available space.

Some post-fix images from this morning:


cameratakesphotos said...

I LOVE the museum images and what a great fix! Though I do enjoy seeing the film sprockets too!

Mike said...

Thanks,Sarah. I wanted the Fed to operate as intended, but I have intentionally included some sprocket holes in images a few times. My best results with that came from using a 35mm cartridge in a medium-format Certo Superspot Dolly. There is an essay with sprockets about Route 66 on my web site page for that camera.

Julio F said...

I believe that older Russian cartridges were a trifle shorter than our current standard. Newer Russki RF don't have the alignment problem, but I've seen it often enough in the older models.

The penny fix is a nice idea!