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Graflok won't Lock (secure) back

 
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psmith



Joined: 16 Jul 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Iowa

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 3:34 am    Post subject: Graflok won't Lock (secure) back Reply with quote

I have a 2x3 Century Graphic. I also have a Graflex 6x9 knob back (does have rollers). When I lock the back down (push sliders into place) the back does not seem to be solidly fixed and it will move to the right if I happen to nudge the back in holding it to focus or set lens features. Is this fairly normal for this kind of back. I ran a roll through the camera with this back and other than one shot that was exposed since back moved to the right, all other shots were fine.

I tried to tighten screws of graphlock but they seemed tight.

Is there any way the back could be made more secure? Any help will be appreciated. Phil
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C. Henry



Joined: 13 Dec 2005
Posts: 360
Location: North East Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:09 pm    Post subject: RE: Graflok won't lock (secure) back. Reply with quote

Phil;

Your problem does not seem "normal" to any roll film back I have ever heard about. There is something that is preventing the back from seating properly.
I shoot with a 2 x 3 Pacemaker Speed (which is older than your Century) and a lever wind Singer RH-8 back (Newer than your knob wind back) and do not have the problem you cite. There should be a ridge about a quarter inch from the edge of the film gate opening on the back that seats in a grove in the camera body about a sixteenth of an inch to the right of the opening in the back of the camera.
Does a sheet film holder seat firmly under the ground glass? If so the problem is with your back, if not there may be some foreign matter holding the back up just enough to let it slide to the right.
Hope this helps or that someone else comes up with a better answer.

C. Henry
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psmith



Joined: 16 Jul 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Iowa

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 2:54 pm    Post subject: My Back Won't Fit Reply with quote

Thanks, C. Henry:

I looked at my film back and the camera carefully and the ridge on the Graphic '23" back, when attached and locked, lies about 1/16 of an inch outside the camera body. The back slips into the slot along the back of the camera and seems to fit nicely, but the ridge you mention is about 3/4 of an inch to the right of the groove in the camera body. I suppose I have a back that might fit the 3/4 Graphic? I can see no way to move the back so that the ridge and grove come in alignment. Do you agree that I probably don't have the right back for my 2/3 gray body/red bellows Century Graphic?

With my Young Sherlock Holmes magnifying glass I noticed that the site where the ridge should be on my film back has been milled off expertly and has been filled and buffed smooth and then painted so that the ridge is no more. This was a professional job. There is another ridge about a 1/4 inch from the slide orifice. Looks like factory-made. Life should not be this hard. But classic Graphics are worth the effort, we all agree.

I do appreciate your willingness to give me your advice.

Phil
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C. Henry



Joined: 13 Dec 2005
Posts: 360
Location: North East Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Phil;

I'm glad that my input helped you find the cause of your problem, but I'm a bit embarrassed that I did not think of the possibility of your roll film back having been modified!
Every film holder that I have (one RH-8 roll film holder, Two Grafmatic "23"s and several holders for two sheets of cut film) has both ridges.
IIRC the roll film holders were made only for the 2 x 3 & 4 x 5 size cameras so you probably do not have one for a 3 x 4 camera. For what it is worth my guess is that somebody modified that roll film holder for a homemade or odd ball brand camera.

C. Henry
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tecspectr



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 2
Location: SLC UT

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2007 7:07 am    Post subject: Same Problem Reply with quote

I just started using my Century Graphic today, and am having the same problem. My back also looks like that ridge has been machined flat, but I wonder if it wasn't just worn flat. I also wonder if it is worth soldering a 2" piece of 20 guage steel rod onto the back where the ridge used to be. Any thoughts, or follow-ups, before I go that far?
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C. Henry



Joined: 13 Dec 2005
Posts: 360
Location: North East Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2007 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't look at my roll back just now but I think that there are some plastic parts close to the location of that ridge that might be damaged by the heat of soldering. other than that consideration replacement of the ridge with an appropriate size of metal rod or square bar stock should work. Perhaps it might be better to fasten the replacement stock with some small machine screws rather than soldering it in place.

C. Henry
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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1446
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2007 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Intrigued by the exchanges on this thread, I retrieved my "23" back (6x9 with knob, like OP's) from storage and fitted it onto the back of my Century. The first thing I noticed, on this film holder as well as on the other four I own (3 RH10s and an RH20), is that there are two ridges 3/4" apart to the inside of the larger (thicker) ridge nearest the dark slide. It is these two thinner ridges that hold the film back so as to prevent it sliding sideways; the innermost ridge next to the film window fits into a slot in the camera back, and the other ridge fits just outside and alongside of the edge of the camera back. Thus installed, and with slide locks engaged, there should be no motion of the film holder in any direction. (The thick ridge performs no function in any of this. I suspect its purpose to be as a strengthening rib that reinforces the clearance tolerance of the dark slide opening.) But without that inner (thin) ridge, the one that fits into the slot and that is missing on tcespecter's "23", there is nothing to prevent the film holder from sliding to the right. I concur with OP that he does need to add this feature; however, soldering steel is not possible (solder works on brass and copper), nor is the metal film holder frame compatible with solder. Brass rod of the proper diameter can be obtained at the hobby shop, and super glue or epoxy used to affix it in the proper location.
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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1446
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2007 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Following an email from "the other Henry" (Carl K.), I should amend my above post as follows:

Guess I should have said "soldering steel is not possible by any conventional methods with which I am familiar." Fact is, conventional tin-lead solder won't take to steel. I suspect that the metal in the Graflex roll holder frame is what we used to call "pot metal," but I'm not sure. But for sure, any kind of procedure involving excessive heat would not be good for this application (warpage, etc.). I think mechanical methods would be better, and I'm thinking that cutting a shallow dado and press fitting brass rod into it might work best. If one is handy, one might be able to do this with careful hacksaw work and a modeler's hammer. It would be an interesting project to attempt, since the back is not reliable to the user as it stands now.

Hope this clarifies things.
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glennfromwy



Joined: 29 Nov 2001
Posts: 903
Location: S.W. Wyoming

PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 3:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

These roll holders were, and still are popular for adaptation to other uses. Unfortunately, that adaptation process can leave it pretty useless for it's intended purpose. I have run across a couple of modifications such as yours. I just use them for something else. There is a roll holder made for 3X4 Speed and Crown Graphics. You would know instantly if you had one, as it would be much too big. You can also use RB-67 6X7 and 6X4.5 roll holders on your Century Graphic. At the present time, they can be had for less than the Graflex kind, with a little looking. Though I'm a dedicated Graflex person, I have to say they're a far better item.
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Glenn

"Wyoming - Where everybody is somebody else's weirdo"
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