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Do-It-Yourself Camera Repair Resources
Before you touch your camera with a jeweler's screwdriver, read all the resources you can find. Start by checking the Troubleshooting Section in your owner's instruction manual. Are you sure the camera is broken? Read this checklist. Next read general camera repair guides and anything specific to your camera model. Realize many first-timers end up with a shoebox full of parts and no idea how to reassemble them. Some Tips - Document every step. Use your digital camera on macro setting to capture each stage of disassembly. Make drawings and diagrams if necessary. Keep screws, springs and tiny pieces in a plastic compartmentalized box, the kind sold in hardware and arts and crafts stores Use a large tray for disassembly and you'll spend less time on your hands and knees looking for that missing screw. One lost screw and you won't be able to reassemble the camera.
Camera Repair Resource Guide FAQ
The granddaddy of camera repair FAQs, this helpful guide to camera repair has been online since 1996, maintained by R. Lee Hawkins with contributions from Paul Archer, camera repair technician and others. While this comprehensive FAQ focuses on repairing Olympus cameras, it is must reading for anyone considering self-repair of their own camera. Answers to basic questions like Should I try to fix my own camera? How much does professional repair cost? (estimated costs are outdated and are higher now.) How can I learn to repair cameras? What tools will I need for camera repair? (Long list of recommended tools provided.) What should I never do when trying to repair a camera? Suggestions for common camera repair problems and much more. This FAQ originated from the writings of Michael Covington, photographer.
Disposable Cameras, Diassembly and Parts Salvage
Excellent reading before you repair an electronic flash unit. Brian Mork tells how to disassemble a single-use camera, with special attention to the dangers of serious electric shock from the flash capacitor. Life-saving instructions on how to fully discharge a capacitor before you proceed. Photo-illustrated article focuses on flash circuit analysis, schematic included.
Favorite Classics - A Camera Repair Resource
Classic film cameras and the loyal photographers who love using them. Articles on camera repair, lens repair, camera restoration tips, how to make your own test equipment, recommended camera repair books, selected repair manuals and instruction manuals, an active forum for camera repair hobbyists and much more. Founded by Kar Yan Mak and Henry Taber.
Flash Trigger Voltage
Discussion on flash trigger voltage and how a vintage electronic flash unit from the 1980s can destroy modern all-electronic film cameras and digital cameras. Damage prevention is simple - measure your flash trigger voltage with a digital multimeter before using an older flash on a modern camera.
Fungus Can Destroy Lenses
Discussion on the damage humid climates can do to lenses, slides and negatives and simple remedies such as silica gel dessicant packets, dry storage cabinets, powdered fungicide and exposing lenses to sunlight.
Lens Defects, or How Bad is "Bad"?
Dean Williams demonstrates with words and pictures that sometimes a dirty lens has absolutely no effect on picture quality. Read this before you consider disassembling a lens with dirt or dust inside.
Lens Disassembly Demonstration
Stephen Castello explains with words and excellent macro photos each step in the disassembly of a Carl Zeiss Flektagon 4/50 lens. He even taught me a new word, "Don't break that spring, they're made of unobtainium."
Light Seals, Replacing Them on Film Cameras
Excellent photo illustrated tutorial on removing and replacing foam light seals on older 35mm cameras with numerous step-by-step photographs. Tutorial demonstrates installing new light seals on the classic Canon F1n. I own three Canon F1n's, all need new foam seals. Thanks for showing me exactly how to do it. Also read Jon Goodman's light seal replacement instructions immediately below for additional suggestions.
Light Seal Replacement Instructions
Jon Goodman's photo-illustrated tutorials for replacing foam light seals on more than two dozen 35mm camera models and generic replacement instructions for mirror dampers and small seals. John Goodman has some additional suggestions which are missing from the Canon F1n light seal replacement tutorial ( see above.)
Matt's Classic Camera Repair Tips
Matt Denton provides a comprehensive overview for anyone considering camera self-repair and restoration. He discusses tools (including useful chemicals), repair methodology and keeping track of all those screws and tiny springs, general cleaning instructions, light seal replacements and alternatives to using foam seals, leather and leatherette maintenance / replacement, restoring aluminum and steel finishes, cleaning ground glass and rangefinder glass, removing fungus from lenses with tips on lens disassembly, mechanical problems, light meter issues, advanced repairs and finding camera parts.
Medium Format Cameras Library Page
Robert Monaghan's writing and compilation of hundreds of articles on medium format cameras. Extensive reports on camera repair and restoration, including arcane topics such as bellows restoration, fixing Bronica focus problems, cementing lenses, flash synch field tests, mirror cleaning tips, inexpensive shutter speed testers, and scores more. Repair articles are listed near the bottom of the page. Editor's Note: web site apparently has a limit on the amount of traffic permitted. If bandwidth has been exceeded you will get a 404 error message saying "file not found." For instant gratification use the Wayback Machine at archive.org or visit another day.
Mercury Battery Replacement Solution for PX-13 / PX-625
The owner of Classic Camera Workshop has created the perfect mercury battery replacement solution. He fabricates a shell which holds a cheap 1.35 volt #675 zinc/air battery, available in drugstores and groceries everywhere to power hearing aids. With his reusable shell, you'll never have to worry about bad meter readings, you won't need a repair shop to recalibrate your light meter for modern batteries, and you won't have to buy a more expensive battery adapter which uses a silver oxide battery and a schottkey or zeiner diode to control voltage and which may not fit inside your battery compartment.
My Camera Doesn't Work
Lots of common-sense reasons why a camera won't work and none of them require a repair shop. An article from Chris Lydle's Photo Image News Network. Must read!
Repairing and Maintaining Classic Cameras
Karen Nakamura writes about simple repairs, including lens cleaning suggestions, replacing foam light seals and rangefinder adjustments for several vintage cameras. She explains how inactivity can break a camera.
Rick Oleson's Camera Tech Notes
Camera repair hobbyist Rick Oleson has repaired hundreds of vintage broken cameras, making notes and drawings of each procedure. He's compiled more than 1400 pages of notes and "doodles" on the Tech Notes Camera Repair CD available for $15 with free shipping anywhere. But wait, there's more. A wealth of information about camera repair and problem solving solutions is available online, you must read.
Shutter Curtain Replacement
Learn the nomenclature of shutter parts with Stephen Castello's photo-illustrated step-by-step tutorial on replacing a shutter curtain in the Russian Fed-2 camera. Focal plane shutter repair is one of the most time-consuming, difficult repairs to perform successfully.
SLR Lens Mount Identification Guide
Rick Oleson's close-up photographs of different lens mounts will help you identify the camera make an unknown lens will fit on. Very useful knowledge before you buy that bargain lens.
Now let's look at camera repair forums where you can ask questions and get answers. Registration is free.
|Camera Repair, States and Provinces A-D||Canada Camera Repair|
|Camera Repair, States and Provinces F-L||United Kingdom UK Camera Repair|
|Camera Repair, States and Provinces M||Australia Camera Repair|
|Camera Repair States and Provinces N||Repair Shops & More, 36 Countries|
|Camera Repair, States and Provinces O-R|
|Camera Repair, States and Provinces S-W|
|Do-It Yourself Camera Repair|
|California Camera Repair||Do-It Yourself Camera Repair Resources|
|Florida Camera Repair||Camera Repair Forums|
|Illinois Camera Repair||Camera Repair Manuals Training Manuals|
|Michigan Camera Repair||Camera Repair Parts Sources|
|New Jersey Camera Repair||Camera Repair Tools and Supplies|
|New York Camera Repair||Camera Repair for Specific Cameras|
|Pennsylvania Camera Repair||Do-It-Yourself Camera Projects|
|Texas Camera Repair||Do-It-Yourself Digital Camera Repair|
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Revised September 8, 2009