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replacing the mirror on a Super D
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Erik Gould



Joined: 24 Jul 2014
Posts: 5
Location: Pawtucket

PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:26 pm    Post subject: replacing the mirror on a Super D Reply with quote

I'd like to swap out the mirror in a 3x4 Super D with a better one that I have from another Super D body (that body has a damaged shutter and other issues.) The mirror I'd like to replace is cloudy and spotted from what looks like moisture or mold damage. I'm not sure how to proceed with the switch or know for sure if it is practical to do so. Along those lines I'm wondering about swapping the front standard as the one on the damaged body is in better shape, but that is a secondary concern. Any ideas?

Thanks in advance,

Erik
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Basic Graflex SLR servicing information sent via email.

Set the curtain to O with the mirror down. Look in from the camera back, you will see 4 wide head slot screws. Remove those 4 screws then from the mirror side lift up the metal retainers and felt and lift the mirror out of the frame. Installation is the reverse of removal.

To access the mirror side you must remove the view hood and ground glass and then there is no guarantee there is enough room to remove the mirror from the mirror frame.

To remove the mirror frame remove the 3 flat head screws that attach the frame to the mirror setting shaft then disengage the material from the top curtain roller housing. On some bodies the mirror frame is part of the top curtain roller housing.

The shutter curtain and guide rollers at the top and bottom of the film opening may have to be removed to gain enough clearance to remove the mirror frame from the body.

On most bodies to remove the front standard remove the bellows to body attach screws and detach the bellows.
Remove the front standard to focus rail screws then disengage the front standard from the focus rails.

Reassembly is reverse of removal.
When installing the front standard to the focus rails, start all screws and lightly snug. Square the standard to the rails and body then tighten the screws. Check the focusing from fully closed to full open and readjust the front standard to focus rails as needed to achieve smooth operation and maintain squareness.

The focus rails are removed by removing the focus shaft and rail stops. The focus knob is attached to the focus shaft with a taper pin.

When installing the focusing shaft be sure to engage the focus rails on the same tooth position so that the rails track evenly.
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Erik Gould



Joined: 24 Jul 2014
Posts: 5
Location: Pawtucket

PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fantastic. You are a font of information.
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Parkeralto



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
Posts: 9
Location: Marin County CA

PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 3:00 am    Post subject: Graflex SLR Mirror Reply with quote

I can add a bit of my experience to that very competent answer. Because the image is large format, it does not require high quality mirror; in fact the thinnest cheapest stuff you can find works great because it is light weight. I have replaced a few Graflex SLR mirrors with first surface mirrors; available from kaleidoscope supplies. There is a problem with focus that will require shimming the ground glass. Even a thin first surface mirror puts the reflective plane 1/16" closer. It is a little fussy but not difficult. The pay off is a brighter sharper image on the ground glass; not a dramatic difference from a new, regular mirror but for me quite noticeable and worth the effort.
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rsweatt



Joined: 07 Feb 2013
Posts: 40
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am wanting to replace the mirror in my Series D 4X5. I have the mirror out because I wanted to get an accurate measure before I shopped around - it measures 4 1/4 X 4 1/4 X 3 1/4 and is 1/16th thick. Am having a time trying to find a replacement.
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Parkeralto



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
Posts: 9
Location: Marin County CA

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used mirror from one of the very cheap bathroom door mirrors that used to be sold at Target or home improvement stores. (hopefully still are) They have a metal or even plastic frame and cardboard backing and very thin mirror.' just the thickness required and enough for a dozen cameras.
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rsweatt



Joined: 07 Feb 2013
Posts: 40
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Parkeralto wrote:
I used mirror from one of the very cheap bathroom door mirrors that used to be sold at Target or home improvement stores. (hopefully still are) They have a metal or even plastic frame and cardboard backing and very thin mirror.' just the thickness required and enough for a dozen cameras.
I assumed, since the original mirror is front/first surface that it is best to use the same kind of mirror, or ghosting reflections will be present with using a back surface mirror you get at department stores. I have seen that some people remove the grey paint from the back of a 2nd surface mirror, making it a 1st surface mirror, but it is a messy process and will likely result in some scratches.
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Erik Gould



Joined: 24 Jul 2014
Posts: 5
Location: Pawtucket

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe that only the Super D cameras had front surface mirrors as original. All of my older model cameras have rear surface mirrors. That's not to say you can't replace one for the other, it just requires adjusting the focusing screen.
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Parkeralto



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
Posts: 9
Location: Marin County CA

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To my knowledge only the last model Super Ds were equipped with first surface mirror. I know all the earlier Graflex SLRs were back surface mirror. It is not as critical on the large format cameras as it would be on something like a Rolleiflex because the image is a lot bigger; the ghost reflection becomes less noticeable. Back in the day first surface mirror was very delicate and deteriorated badly with age. Often the mirroring on an old TLR wipes right off the glass. Not a problem though; no need to try to strip paint from the back of a mirror. High quality first surface (or front surface) mirror is available thanks to kaleidoscope hobbyists at several outlets. I get mine from here:

http://www.kaleidoscopestoyou.com/front-surface-mirror-for-kaleidoscopes.html

Keep in mind that if the camera did not have first surface mirror to begin with the GG will have to be shimmed to correct the change in focus.
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rsweatt



Joined: 07 Feb 2013
Posts: 40
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting. I just looked closely at my mirror and it is definitely first surface. Not Sure if it is original, but when I purchased my Series D a year or so ago, it looks like it has hardly ever been used, making me believe that the mirror is probably the original.
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have seen both front and rear surface mirrors used in Graflex SLR's of varying age and model with the rear surface being the most common.
I suspect it has more to do with supply and cost over other factors.

While the originals are 1/16 thick in either case, 1/8 inch thick mirror works fine. I bought some mirror tiles at Lowes and cut a replacement using the original as a template. The aluminum clamps and their retaining screws work on the thicker material without any modification. The extra weight does not adversely affect the mirror return spring either.

I have not had any issues with having to adjust the ground glass unless changing lens or mounting a fresh to the camera lens.
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rsweatt



Joined: 07 Feb 2013
Posts: 40
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is beginning to sound like what ever I do, I need to check my focus at the film plane because it could be right on, or as much as 1/16" off. No way of knowing if my camera was celebrated for a 1st or 2nd surface mirror. Probably not to big of a problem but I do like to shoot wide open from time to time.
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

On a recent repair I had both a film pack adapter and a near new old stock Graflex 2 sided film holder. The film plane is .197 .007 inch from the edge of the film holder. It is the same spec as 2x3, 3x4, and 4x5 standard film holders.
If the standard holds true for 5x7 then it is .228 .010 inch.

I cut a piece of regular glass to fit in the film pack adapter, put Scotch Magic Transparent tape on one side without overlapping, put the tape side toward the lens, focused on a target 5000 feet away, adjusted the view gg to match with the lens wide open. Negatives shot with the lens wide open proved the adjustment correct.
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rsweatt



Joined: 07 Feb 2013
Posts: 40
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just now took my 4X5 bag-mag, slid a sheet of film into the 1st septum and measured (as best as I could) from the film (insuring that I did not apply significant pressure to the film while measuring) to the face of the magazine - 6mm. I then did the same with a slotted film holder and it was very close, perhaps .25mm less. Then, just for fun I measured a modern 4X5 film holder and it was 4mm ... 2mm less than the bag-mag.

So, my plan is to, once I have replaced the reflex mirror, remove the septum's from the bag-mag and place a spare 4X5 ground-glass inside, insuring that it is spaced 6mm from the front of the magazine surface, then do some focus tests, and shim the reflex mirror or ground-glass as necessary. Am I missing anything?

I thought it would be easy to find a suitable replacement reflex mirror but it is turning into quite a chore - I am looking at 1st surface acrylic now.
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3246
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

FWIW .197in=5.0038mm; .007in=.1778mm; tolerance range 4.829mm to 5.1816mm
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