Contaflex II SLR: incorrect shutter speed

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by Laurens, Jun 16, 2011.

  1. Laurens

    Laurens Member

    Jun 16, 2011
    The Netherla
    I was given a Zeiss-Ikon Contaflex SLR some time ago. Beautiful camera, but it doesn't work properly. The buzzing thing that controls the shutter speeds works very irregularly. For example: when set at 1/2 second, it can take up to 1 second before the shutter has closed again. Sometimes it works at the correct speed, sometimes it doesn't.
    I've tried measuring the shutter speeds. Everything below 1/30 seems to be acceptable and pretty consistent. 1/15 seems to vary a bit. 1/8 or slower varies quite a lot - 1/4 takes around 0,35 seconds (normal: 0,25 sec)
    I will repeat the measurements when i have more accurate tools for measuring.

    I am not the only one with this problem. It can be solved by taking the shutter mechanism apart, cleaning it, and lubricating it again.
    However, it would cost way too much to get it fixed professionally - i've read that it can cost about $200 which is too much for me.
    I can't do it myself, i don't have the patience nor the skill and knowledge to work on such a piece of fine mechanics.

    As the thickened grease is the core of the problem, i was thinking about ways of making the grease thinner without taking the camera apart.
    I was thinking about putting it in a sealed container with a dish of gasoline in it, and heating it slightly so the gasoline vapor gets into the camera.
    The next step would be taking the camera out, and cooling it rather quickly so the vapor condenses. If all goes as planned, the thickened grease will mix with the gasoline, making the grease thinner.

    What do you think, could this be a way to fix the camera? Or would this just make the camera very smelly and cause damage?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 16, 2011