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Use Electronic Flash with Supermatic Shutters?

 
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miket-nyc



Joined: 18 Apr 2018
Posts: 38
Location: NYC

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 5:34 am    Post subject: Use Electronic Flash with Supermatic Shutters? Reply with quote

I recently bought two 101mm f. 4.5 Kodak Ektars (one was being sold cheap online "for parts" but it turned out to have a sticky shutter and excellent glass). I will probably combine bits from both, but they both come in Graphic Supermatic shutters with M or F synch, but no X synch, and I want to use electronic flash with the camera.

I read somewhere that electronic flash can work with F synch, but does it work WELL that way? F synch has a 5 millisecond delay between the time the shutter opens and the time the contacts close. That's better than the 20 millisecond delay of M synch, but the flash is still firing later than it would with X synch. So is this electronic flash with F synch limited to certain shutter speeds? And if it is, can these shutters be modified to give true X synch?

Also, on one of these Supermatic shutters, you have to unscrew the end of the sync knob to move it between M and F, but on the other the end of the knob is spring-loaded to unlock when you pull it up. Am I right to assume that the knob with the pull-up design is newer, and did these later shutters have any other internal improvements?
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Dan Fromm



Joined: 14 May 2001
Posts: 2020
Location: New Jersey

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I b'lieve that Supermatics have a synchronizer cocking lever. It is just clockwise from the press focus button. If you fire the shutter without cocking the synchronizer, it will give you "X" sync.
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miket-nyc



Joined: 18 Apr 2018
Posts: 38
Location: NYC

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 4:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dan Fromm wrote:
I b'lieve that Supermatics have a synchronizer cocking lever. It is just clockwise from the press focus button. If you fire the shutter without cocking the synchronizer, it will give you "X" sync.


I see! I thought that was a broken self-timer. So if I don't cock it I'll always get X synch no matter what synch the shutter is set to?

That's very convenient for me now, but it must have been very inconvenient for people who used to use these with flashbulbs. If the photographer didn't remember to cock it, the flash would still go off, so he'd think he got the picture, but it would flash too late and the picture wouldn't come out well (or at all).
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3671
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Supermatic operation is described on page 12
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1sPJkp-MdghNEZZV1BLVndXbVk/view?usp=sharing
Some, I assume early versions, did not fire a flash unless the delay was cocked. On those shutters shorting the 10k ohm resistor made them X sync.
The procedure was to set the shutter then install the flash bulb and make the shot.

Supermatic shutters are not difficult to service and service manuals are available. A service manual was written for each lens version but the service manual for one will work for another except for the Meadalist and Monitor Six-20 cameras.
I can sell you a pdf copy for less than you can buy it on ebay if interested.

Date the lens here: https://graflex.org/speed-graphic/lenses.html#EktarLenses
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