Contax RTS-2 Repair

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by mtjade2007, May 24, 2012.

  1. mtjade2007

    mtjade2007 Member

    Jan 14, 2007
    Medium Format
    I have a total of 6 Contax RTS-2 bodies. Talking about GAS. I have had it.

    Well, two of them are in perfect working order. A 3rd one was good when I got it but went bad not long after. Its shutter won't fire although mechanically it is fine. I can release the shutter by pressing the mechanical release button. So it is clearly an electronics problem. All other 3 have shutter problems. One has a derailed shutter, one with stuck shutter and the 3rd abnormal shutter operation. The first one I got is the one that has the electronics problem. I bought the 2nd with a problem thinking it could be used to fix the first. But it looked so good despite having a problem. I just could not tear it apart for the first one. I kept on looking for defective ones thinking it would be for repairing the previous. I ended up buying 6 total. Fortunately 2 of the 6 do not need any repair. I have had a lot of fun with them. I have a total of 7 Contax Zeiss lenses and really enjoyed the system.

    Now I really want to fix the remaining 4. I will not be greedy in hoping I can get all 4 fixed. If I can fix 2 I will be plenty satisfied. So I will have plenty of parts from the two that I plan to sacrifice. I have taken apart the first one. The top and the bottom are off. THe mirror box along with the electronics modules are off too. I can attack the shutter mechanism any time now. Before I move on I would like to hear advices what to expect. There are broken parts so I will have to take apart the modules that have been separated. I will also need to make adjustments when the broken parts are swapped.

    Any suggestions, tips? I have a service manual. But it is far from being complete and detailed enough for the repair of the camera. You see GAS is somewhat harmful. I have to have the RTS-2 fixed. AT least fix two of them.
  2. Christopher Nisperos

    Christopher Nisperos Member

    Oct 1, 2004
    Paris, France
    Multi Format
    I just picked up a Contax 159MM as a "good deal" --I thought it'd great for street shooting, as it came with a nice Kiron* 20mm f2 and it's already a bit beat-up so I don't have to worry about petting and nursing it. However, like you, I immediately ran into a problem with its electro-magnetic shutter: it doesn't fire. According to what I've found online, I can repair the problem by opening the face of the camera and cleaning the "magnet and armature"... But forget it! My limit for doing 'fine detail work' is flossing my teeth! Anyway --as it came with a couple of nice lenses, my intention --and suggestion to you-- is to pick up an affordable, all-mechanical, Yashica FX body....I'd love to have the all- mechanical Contax S2 is (for me) out of the ball park at it's current --what?-- $1000. second hand price... and even if I could afford it, I'd be back to babying the thing instead of relaxing and shooting with it (I think --somewhere buried in a camera bag-- I've got a Leica I never use because of this psychological fear!)

    Wish us both good luck!

    *friendly message to the Super Technoids who'd have the tendency to ask, "Why would you use a Contax camera and not use Contax lenses?" That's so old and, in my book, hair-splittingly invalid today. Go tell it to the Leica owners who shoot through Voightländer glass and leave me alone! :surprised:) .
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 2, 2012