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Series B Preservation or Restoration?

 
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woodplane



Joined: 20 Sep 2005
Posts: 33
Location: Chicago

PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 4:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi all,
My Aunt gave me a Series B that belonged to my Uncle. All the metal parts have green funk around the edges, the chimney and shutter curtain are both pretty creaky. Any suggestions on how best to preserve this camera? I'm thinking less is more since I doubt I will use it, but I know I will want to open it up and check it out every now and again, so I want to prevent damaging it.

Thanks,

Scott
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3244
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scott,
I recently purchased a series B off ebay from a "collection". The view hood was ready to disintegrate and the shutter was headed that way. I removed the hood and back, saturated the outside and inside of the hood with "Lemon Pledge" and sat aside, then saturated each section of the shutter curtain with the Pledge, let it sit 5 to 10 minutes then rubed it into the shutter fabric and removed the excess. I carefully lifted the shutter curtain and placed one hand under it while wiping.
The next day I wiped down the focus hood and reinstalled it. I cleaned the ground glass while I had this section apart also.
Result: Focus hood folds that were ready to seperate are sturdy enough for moderate use.
Shutter curtain feels 25% to 30% softer than it was on reciept.
When removing screws note thier position as different sized screws were used in a given assembly. The camera serial number is located behind the top of the focus hood in the lid on the right side as you hold to focus.
Charles


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woodplane



Joined: 20 Sep 2005
Posts: 33
Location: Chicago

PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2005 5:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What material was used for the chimney and the shutter curtain? I'm finding it hard to bring myself to douse my Uncle's camera in Pledge. Maybe Armor All? Right now it seems happy as a curio on my dresser. I doubt I'll use it since it seems redundant with my Speed Graphic, for which I don't need to cut down 4x5 film to 3.25x4.25.

Scott
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disemjg



Joined: 10 Jan 2002
Posts: 469
Location: Washington, DC

PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2005 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The focusing hood is leather with a fabric lining. Most of the time they are hard as a rock, or are worn through on the edges and falling apart.

The shutter is rubberized fabric, which tends to dry out and crack with age. If it is limber and maybe dusty gray looking it should be OK. If it is hard and split, try the Pledge but the odds are that there will be pinholes that demand the replacement of the curtain.

I have read other posts here that extol the lemon Pledge treatment; I myself have used it on bellows and it seems to work well without any bad side effects.

Do not use armor-all for this purpose.

Leather responds well to being treated with neats foot oil, which softens up old dried out leather. That would be my first choice for the hood. Also use it on the leather covering on the camera body.

The green crusty stuff is verdigris corrosion, caused by the reaction between the leather and the brass fittings. Carefully scrape off the bigger chunks, being careful not to gouge the leather. While nothing I have found really cleans this stuff off well, denatured alcohol can be used to soften it up a bit so it can be rubbed off. Do not use the alocohol near painted surfaces on a Graflex as it will take off the paint.

And you do not have to cut film down to 3X4; it can be bought from several specialty film sources for reasonable prices. The format is useful, and fun to use. Remember that you will need Graflex film holders, as they are different from Graphic holders. They have a groove in each edge that is used to hold them on the camera.

[ This Message was edited by: disemjg on 2005-10-13 06:34 ]
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