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Sticking Shutter on Mamiya RZ67 50 mm Lens

Discussion in 'Lens Matters' started by Benchmark, Oct 27, 2017.

  1. Benchmark

    Benchmark Well-Known Member

    I was out with my Mamiya RZ67 a few days ago taking some autumnal shots when the shutter in my 50 mm lens failed to close after making an exposure. This effectively 'bricked' the camera, which only responded after removing the battery for a minute or two and reinserting it, whereupon a faint click was heard from the shutter.

    It seems the leaf shutter mechanism in this lens has become sticky, as it works perfectly well in the warm at home, but stops working when it becomes cold. A change of battery made no difference, and my other lenses continue to work perfectly well in the same conditions.

    The lens is otherwise in perfect condition, with crystal clear optics, so I would be keen to get it repaired if possible. Does anyone have any recommendations? Could this even be a DIY job?

    I have previously used Johnson's Photopia for Mamiya repairs but they were very pricey, so I would like to find a good independent if possible.
  2. Roger_Provins

    Roger_Provins Well-Known Member

    My guess is that some oil has migrated from the focus lubrication and when warm is sufficiently fluid to allow the leaves to open but not so when cold. I would have it professionally repaired. I've used Newton Ellis & Co in the past and they were very good.
  3. Benchmark

    Benchmark Well-Known Member

    Thanks Roger.

    Someone reminded me of Luton Cameras today. They overhauled my OM2 SP last year and did an excellent job. I gave them a call and they said much the same as yourself, and that they could service it.

    The gentleman also commented that "Mamiya RZ lenses don't like the cold"! :)
  4. SqueamishOssifrage

    SqueamishOssifrage Well-Known Member

    You should know by now that taking a camera outside is just asking for trouble. :p

    More seriously, also get whoever repairs it to check the diaphragm blades are clean as well. I once bought a brand new Zeiss 85mm f:1.4 in London, but when I got it to Bahrain the diaphragm got completely glued up with grease. I had to send it back and have it 'tropicalized'.
  5. Benchmark

    Benchmark Well-Known Member

    Yes Indeed. :)

    It had occurred to me that the RZ was primarily designed for studio use. Certainly, given its sheer weight and bulk only a certain type of person would take it out into the wild, but once on location it is a joy to use.

    By Comparison my Mamiya 645 Pro is a lightweight, and much easier to handle. I have used it in all weathers other than pouring rain and it has been faultless. Even when my fingers were freezing to the metal parts it still worked!

    I try to reason with myself that, in the greater scheme of things, the 645 format is not that much smaller than 6 x 7, but when I can I prefer to use the RZ, especially for the ability to easily rotate the film back into portrait mode. :)
  6. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Nigel,

    Frances wore one out...


  7. SqueamishOssifrage

    SqueamishOssifrage Well-Known Member

    I went from a Mamiya C330 to a 645 for my medium format stuff, and absolutely loved it - one of my 'hall of fame' cameras. It survived two years in Saudi Arabia and four years in Iraq and I only sold it when I took a year off to go sailing - I got a Nikonos system as being more likely to survive a nautical life!

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