About this blog

What’s this about ?

I am not all that sure … right now that is … so I will say that this is about camera, lens, shutter repair or restoration.

I think that this is a blog about my adventures in bringing life back to those camera’s that had a place in the world of Photography.

Not these new uber electronic ones, but those ones that made ratchet noises when you manually wound the film … or that snick noise of the leaf shutter.

As I continue to take on repairs I will add a new entry per item. I won’t be going detailing every step … don’t want this to end up as a repair manual … but I will be pointing out certain things that will help others that want to go through similar repairs.

How did this all start (not the start that I blabbed about) ?

A couple of years ago I wanted to get back into medium format film photography so I researched a number of cameras and ended up buying some TLR’s. One of them was in not so great condition but it was a great price … I thought I would fix it. I did a lot of searching and reading of articles/blogs on the Web, and was able to restore it.

I then started to get more tools, especially ones for handling repairs on shutters, lenses, and for cleaning. I bought more “for parts or repair” cameras … and so far there have been only three that were beyond repair, and mostly because of lack of replacement parts.

… Oh, and the first camera that I disassembled was a Beauty 35 Super, made by Taiyodo Koki Ltd. It was broken and my father gave it to me (though it may have been me who broke it). I think that was about 35 years ago.

Why am I blogging this ?

I thought it would be cool to tell others about what I did.

Some more about this about.

This blog would not be possible without all those on the web that have also contributed their own adventures in repair, all those people in the Classic Repair Forum, Brian Sweeney (where ever you are now), Rick Oleson (and your sketches), Federico Buchbinder (Invisible), those film shooters at TPF, APUG, and Dyxum, my friend Craig … and my father.

Oh, and if you have not figured out … I am a photographer. Have been that way for a while now. I figured it was no use in showing off my images as other photo bloggers do. There are so many that I thought I would take a different route … to show off the cameras from the “golden” days of photography.

First camera was some sort of 126, then a 110. Big pause, then many years later I bought a Canon T-70. Got a job at a camera store. Stuck with Canon manual focus for decades (I never really got into the whole AF thing). Got into medium format. Got into the home developing and printing thing. Dumped it all and went digital. Now back to adding film cameras to my imaging … again. TLRs, SLRs, and Rangefinders … home developing B&W … and hopefully back into the printing.

Maybe I might add a picture or two from one of the cameras that I have worked on … maybe not.


It appears that I have added a picture or two, or many of the cameras that I have worked on.


Some more information about this blog … and myself

The early age was a time of experimentation and examination. Things (living and man-made) did things for a reason … I was curious about the reason why they did these things. I think this is something that we should all think more about. We take a lot of things for granted, like the computer that I am typing this on, or the manner in which you are reading this right now. We should all remember to question.

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.” – Albert Einstein

I was born into the world of Photography when I got a job at Japan Camera Centre (this would be a name only known to Canadians) … and based on that remark you now know that I am Canadian. I am a fourth generation Canadian-Japanese (not Japanese-Canadian), which has surprised a lot of people … not that I am of Japanese decent living in Canada, but that I am more Canadian than they are. Anyway, I am straying off topic … umm, what was I saying again ?? Oh yeah .. I remained in the Photofinishing industry for many years and was there at the birth of Digital Imaging. Throughout all the technological changes I always remember the olden days and the equipment that they used … the roots, the ancestors that struggled with perfecting the imperfect. I find our digital age quiet stale and, to me, it does not have the same soul … kind of like looking back at those adventurers that traveled around the globe in wooden ships powered by the wind, encountering new things that frightened, and fascinated.

Doing this blog revives that feeling of adventure. Researching the historical aspects of the camera and maker, coupled with discovering how these cameras actually function, brings me back that pioneer time … the golden age of Photography.


A legacy that hopefully will continue on …

I think that one of reason’s for the existence of this blog is to pass on knowledge and also create future mechanical hackers. I had the privilege of being influenced by tradespeople, so using tools and having a really good guess about materials is in my blood … I have no formal training in any of this, unless you call taking apart stuff as a kid an education.

What I am trying to say is that I hope that this blog has a legacy that will continue with new tinklers.

The adventures of this guy who tries to restore and repair vintage photographic equipment … and wins (most of the time).

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