Light Leaks

I have been slowly scanning in my negatives and posting them here on my blog. These next two rolls were taken after I discovered that my Mum’s Voigtlander needed a little bit of repair.

I thought about getting the work professionally done, but quickly realized that it would cost much more than the 25.00$ to 50.00$ purchase value of the camera. I was more or less told, “You’re better off buying a used one on e-Bay.”

Not wanting the camera to just collect dust, I figured that the least I could do is try and fix it myself. If my attempts left if inoperable, it would still be collecting dust as a family antique and I could say I gave it my best. The first step was collecting some tools and setting up a makeshift repair shop.

A Voigtlander Brilliant set for a home repair

With tools in hand, I opened up the side wall of the camera to get at the frame counter wheel.

The paper with the frame count had come off the wheel, which was a quick fix. A little white glue and time to let it set had it looking as good as new.

Frame Count Wheel from a Voigtlander Brilliant

Getting the wheel back in was a different story. I had to drill out a pop rivet to get the wheel out. Eventually I found a flat pan head computer screw that was almost as thin as the pop rivet that had originally held it in place.

All I had to do was replace the inside wall, trim the flocking that was getting in the way and close it up. Or at least that is what I should have done. Instead, I decided I should also try and get rid of the dust and smudges on the lenses.

Voigtlander Brilliant with first lens out

The front lens came out without too much difficulty, but I also took off the plate to the shutter speed. When I did this, I didn’t see the smallest, thinnest piece of metal slip out. Later when I put it all together, the slowest shutter speed would cause the shutters to stick open. Something that was not happening before.

It turns out that the little piece of metal was an ingenious little fix to what I imagine was a design flaw. All the shutter speeds worked great, but if you went just a little too fat past the mark for 1/25 the shutters stayed open. I can imagine that this point may have been a little different for each camera, so the simple cost-effective solution: a little piece of metal as a bumper. A lot easier to adjust than the slit that the shutter speed arm comes through.

Voigtlander Brilliant with both lenses removed

Although I did get the send lens out, I later had to remove the whole lens and shutter unit by undoing an awkward nut on the inside. The whole front piece did come off and I was able to reassemble the whole camera (including a couple days of trying to figure out the shutter speed problem before finding the little piece of mental on my worktable). It. was now time to take it out for a test drive.

Image from Voigtlander Brilliant with light leak
Image from Voigtlander Brilliant with light leak

Although some images turned out. It was clear that I had a light leak and a dust problem from trimming the flocking. The story of hunting the light leak down and fixing it will have to wait for that roll of film to be scanned in.