And you guys think the LF forum is vitriolic. O.K. maybe curmudgeon Dan gets cranked up...
I posted this over on LF and thought it mght be appropriate here.
Keith, look me up when you're down CNMS way.
"I think I understand the technical issues now. The confusion in the thread seems to exist because people are talking about several different things at once, technical and economic (support) issues.
The solutions seem to be:
What can the user do?
1) Remove the fresnel. The GG is in the proper place.
Drawbacks: the image is now quite a bit darker.
2) Remove the Chamonix GG and Chamonix fresnel, and install an aftermarket fresnel IN PLACE OF THE GG (not the Chamonix fresnel) that has a "frosted" side facing the lens, so that the image-forming surface is in the same place as the Chamonix GG. Then install a cover glass to protect the fresnel. The fresnel is now effectively BEHIND the GG and the image-forming surface is in the same (correct) place. This is the "Ebony" or "Maxwell" option referenced on the Chamonix website.
Drawbacks: You pay unless Chamonix does.
3) Have someone re-mill the GG frame to work with the existing fresnel.
Drawback #1: Shipping and wait if you have Chamonix, Ritter, etc do it, cost if Chamonix doesn't do it gratus.
Drawback #2: If the back is re-milled to relocate the GG, it will no longer work with a plain GG or with the Ebony/Maxwell option mentioned above, and may not work with any other fresnel of a different power.
Note: Personally I would not modify the back to be non-standard and to work only with a fresnel of unknown characteristics.
So you just have to pick which one you want.
Unless Chamonix picks up the tab, you're going to get darker on the screen or lighter in the wallet if you want accurate focus under all conditions.
I'm not sure what Chamonix does at this point. They're sort of, well, screwed, but they did it to themselves. I'd probably offer what Mike suggested, send us the frame/camera and we'll fix it and pay shipping. I don't think they can send out "fix it" kits since many of the cameras have been re-sold so they wouldn't know who really has one, or for that matter, if all the cameras have the same problem given the QA/QC. As a business entity, Chamonix clearly needs to make the quality assurance/quality control a little more balanced with the apparently superb craftsmanship they exhibit.