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shutter stuck open

Thomas Janik , Feb 08, 2005; 10:04 p.m.

I am hoping for someone to offer some help with this problem, or at least a suggestion for a good and inexpensive repair shop. I?m hesitant to post this escapade, but here goes. The body cap on my 67 body was stuck. It clearly wasn?t seated properly and would not move in either direction. I was afraid to force it, so I decided a cheap cap wasn?t worth worrying about. Using a hack saw blade and a Dremel tool, I cut a hole in the cap, cut some sections (pie slice like) which allowed me to remove the cap. During the surgery, I put the mirror in the lock up position to get it out of harm?s way. When I had removed the cap I tried to fire the shutter, but no response. I noticed the mirror was not quite completely up, so I pushed it gently, immediately the shutter opened. The problem is it has not closed. I changed the battery, no effect. Any ideas or good shops to recommend in the Buffalo, Toronto, Rochester or even Cleveland area?

Responses

Steve Levine , Feb 09, 2005; 04:57 p.m.

You were "afraid to force it",but used a hack saw and power tools on it? Next time this occurs, grab the cap with a large pair of pliers or vice grips and twist it off.The metal mounting flange will not be damaged by a plastic cap.Lord knows what shard of plastic could now be imbeded in your shutter's mechanism?

Thomas Janik , Feb 09, 2005; 07:21 p.m.

Steve:

Okay I deserve your reply. This is neither the first nor likely to be the last boneheaded stunt I?m involved in. In my defense, I don?t think your pliers suggestion would have been without damage. There are metal flanges on the cap. It was my suspicion, later confirmed, that the flange had become bent and was hung up on who-knows-what. I also worked with the camera upside down and with a vacuum attempting to prevent plastic bits from entering the camera. Clearly, it wasn?t effective.

Know a good shop?

Walter Tatulinski , Feb 09, 2005; 10:52 p.m.

Thomas, I am sorry to here of your misfortune. I probably would have attempted the same procedure as you did. If I were going to have my cameras serviced my first choice would be to send them to Pentax USA in Colorado (www.pentaxusa.com). You can call them and get the details. If you send the camera to them you can get a free estimate before they do any work, you just pay the shipping. Another option would be KEH in Atlanta (www.keh.com). I had some minor repair work done to a lens by them and the turnaround time was very good. Regards.

Walter Tatulinski , Feb 09, 2005; 11:01 p.m.

Another thought. As you look at the front of the camera body there is a small black button on the left side at about the same level as the mirror release button. My instruction manual states that this is a "safety device release button". I have never had the occasion to use it but I think it is used to reset the mirror if it stops partway up because of a dead battery. The manual states that one should press the safety button with a pointed object and then press the shutter release. Might be worth playing around with that first. Regards.

Thomas Janik , Feb 12, 2005; 09:36 a.m.

Walter:

Thanks for the suggestions. I tried the release button - no luck. I might try KEH. I can drive to Pentax Canada, but they are a little pricey (minimum $250 for MF cameras). That wasn't bad when the Canadian dollar was only worth 62 cents, but now it's not such a good deal. Anyone heard of Eric Hendrickson at pentaxrepairs@aol.com. He was recommended to me and is reportly a former Pentax repairperson who does good work and changes reasonable rates?

Walter Tatulinski , Feb 13, 2005; 04:35 p.m.

Hi Thomas. Let me know how everything turns out. One never knows; I may need service down the road some day too. Regards.

Douglas Pollock , Mar 05, 2005; 05:03 p.m.

Thomas,

I use Picture Perfect Unlimited in Chatsworth, California and have had only good experiences. I'm a customer with no other association. Good repairs, quick, thorough, neat, etc. Ask for Jim Razo.

Thomas Janik , Mar 19, 2005; 08:09 p.m.

A final note: I did send the camera to Eric Hendrickson. He repaired and cleaned the camera for $175, certainly less than Pentax would charge. Best, time from shipment to return was two weeks.

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