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Author Topic: Aero Ektar - disassembly?  (Read 884 times)
wlewisiii
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« on: January 01, 2007, 03:58:30 PM »

Just wondering if anyone here has ever had a 7"/2.5 Aero-Ektar open to clean fungus. Thinking about one so afflicted... :banghead:

William
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Heck, just give me a Tessar on any camera :cloud9:
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Len Robertson
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« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2007, 06:02:07 PM »

William - I can't really help, except to post a couple of links:
http://home.earthlink.net/~michaelbriggs/aeroektar/aeroektar.html
http://www.johndesq.com/graflex/index.html
The second site takes some digging, but somewhere on there is a page on Aero Ektars.

Years ago I had a chance to buy a 178mm and didn't. Of course now I wish I had. Actually the ones on eBay aren't as pricey (yet) as some of the LF soft focus lenses. I had plenty of chances to buy those, way back before they became cult lenses. If I weren't so cheap, I'd just pay the price for an Aero on eBay.

I didn't Google Aero Ektar. There may be some good information online I haven't seen.
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Glenn Thoreson
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« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2007, 07:00:50 PM »

I've had one partially diassembled. They're tricky damn things to get apart, and success is definitely not guaranteed. The rear group on mine was the easiest to get apart, and that's as far as I went. Memory fails, but the retaining ring on my rear group had several tiny, almost invisible spot welds around the ring to guard against the effects of vibation. You have to break these and it ain't easy. A fine pointed, very sharp chisel and great care are the order of the day. Once you break the spots, if you're careful, you can unscrew the ring. That gives you access to 3 or 4 elements. You have to be sure you note exactly how they faced and replace tthem exacly the same way. Now, the front group on mine has spot welds on the ring, too. I was unsuccessful in breaking them without getting violent. For fear of damage, I quit while I was ahead. I needed to clean a little haze and cleaning the rear ones was enough to satisfy me. The big (huge) problem was badly damaged coating on the front of the front element. Through lots of effort, I was able to polish the coating mostly off. I doubt it will have any effect on performace. At least it's nice and clear without the appeance of a scratched up moonscape. Was it worth it? I haven't tried it yet, but I doubt it. You can find a nice one for 10 to 30 bucks, with patience. Wide open, these things have litterally zero depth of field. Stopped down, they're too sharp for portraits, I hear. That leaves whatever may lie in between. Maybe. Note that these were made by several different manufacturers, to Kodak optical specs. The mounts, however, may vary. They also glow in the dark........ Smiley
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Glenn from Wyoming

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Glenn Thoreson
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« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2007, 08:40:21 PM »

I forgot to mention that in addition to the possibility of spot welded retaining rings, there is also the possibility of little set screws that hold the ring from unscrewing. There are seven elements in these things.
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Glenn from Wyoming

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Len Robertson
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« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2007, 06:09:03 PM »

Glenn - You have put the fear in me of ever buying one with internal problems, but I'm curious if there is any problem getting them apart to mount on a board. I'm thinking threaded aluminum pieces that may have seized, or something like that.

I've seen some really interesting photos taken with 4X5 Speeds using the 178mm. Really shallow depth of field and fuzzy corners; probably an acquired taste.
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Glenn Thoreson
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« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2007, 09:36:19 PM »

Yep, an acquired taste. You don't have to disassemble it to put it on a board but unless you want to shell out some bucks for machine work, you need to get original. I mounted mine on an inverted recessed Calumet lens board. Now, instead of being an "innie" it's an "outie". I filled the back side up with hot glue to hold the thing to the board. It weighs a ton. I can't remember why I went with the extended board. Maybe because the rear element wouldn't fit through the front standard on an Anniversary Speed Graphic. These things weren't intended to be mounted on a conventional board, though a retaining ring could be made by a machinist. They weren't intended for general photography, either, but I never let little details get in my way. Smiley
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Glenn from Wyoming

"I reject your reallity and substitute my own"
( Adam Savage )
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