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  #1  
Old 7th April 2021, 08:36 AM
dslater dslater is offline
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Question Developing Mistake or Camera Fault?

Hi,

I've just developed a roll of Kentmere 400 in Ilfosol 3 for the recommended time (6.5 mins) at 20C. However, 6 of the 24 frames display not-entirely-blank images; an exposure is visible at the bottom 8th of the frame. What's odd also, is that there is a perfectly exposed frame between them.

I was testing a Praktica MTL3 someone had given to me. Admittedly, I pressed the shutter button just after the last frame on the roll and the mirror hadn't fallen back down. I unscrewed the lens to check whether the shutter had closed and it had. Additionally, I found that the wind up mechanism was quite stiff when winding back.

I wondered whether anyone could explain what might have happened here, and help clarify whether it is a developing issue or camera fault.

Any help is much appreciated.
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Old 7th April 2021, 09:06 AM
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A quick search tells me that the MTL3 has a metal vertical shutter so I think you have the answer to why only the bottom of the frame was exposed. Sounds like the shutter is having issues. Definitely not a film processing issue. It probably needs a clean and lube (CLA). Possibly, only some speeds are having an issue.

I'm not familiar with the MTL3 but it was a very popular camera and the metal shutter means it should last much longer than others with a fabric curtain so it may be worth resuscitating. A search online might find if this is a common problem and if there is a DIY fix.

Last edited by Bob; 7th April 2021 at 09:10 AM.
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Old 7th April 2021, 10:43 AM
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Were you using flash? You might get an effect like this if using flash at the wrong shutter speed. I had one of these cameras in the 80ís. I really liked it. The only issue mine had was to do with the film wind mechanism. If I recall correctly, there was a nylon gear somewhere in the design that was sometimes prone to wear.
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Old 7th April 2021, 11:21 AM
dslater dslater is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob View Post
A quick search tells me that the MTL3 has a metal vertical shutter so I think you have the answer to why only the bottom of the frame was exposed. Sounds like the shutter is having issues. Definitely not a film processing issue. It probably needs a clean and lube (CLA). Possibly, only some speeds are having an issue.

I'm not familiar with the MTL3 but it was a very popular camera and the metal shutter means it should last much longer than others with a fabric curtain so it may be worth resuscitating. A search online might find if this is a common problem and if there is a DIY fix.
Hi Bob,

Thanks for your reply and your suggestion.

A shutter problem sounds feasible. I don't think my friend had used it in some time and the lubricant might have seized up. It did seem odd that some are good exposures, which suggests certain speeds at fault. I kept a diary of the shots so it might be worth consulting this.
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Old 7th April 2021, 11:29 AM
dslater dslater is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexmuir View Post
Were you using flash? You might get an effect like this if using flash at the wrong shutter speed. I had one of these cameras in the 80ís. I really liked it. The only issue mine had was to do with the film wind mechanism. If I recall correctly, there was a nylon gear somewhere in the design that was sometimes prone to wear.
Alex


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Hi Alex,

Thanks for your reply and suggestion.

I wasn't using flash, but thinking about it the winding mechanism was a little tough for me too.
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Old 7th April 2021, 11:55 AM
Terry S Terry S is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dslater View Post
I don't think my friend had used it in some time and the lubricant might have seized up.
First thing that I would suggest, is to go through the shutter speeds, one by one, whilst shooting off the shutter a good number of times.

Sometimes when a camera hasn't been used for a while, it does, as you say, become 'seized up'.

As for a CLA, this camera is relatively cheap and a service may not be economical...?

Terry S
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Old 7th April 2021, 01:18 PM
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Hi Terry,

Thanks for your reply and suggestion.

You're probably right about it not being economical. I'll probably hang on to it and tinker with it.

I'll give the shutter tests a go.

I looked back in my diary and the issues seem to correlate with shooting at 1/1000.

To tell the truth, the negatives look a little underexposed as a whole, despite having used a light meter.
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Old 7th April 2021, 01:44 PM
Terry S Terry S is offline
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Originally Posted by dslater View Post
To tell the truth, the negatives look a little underexposed as a whole, despite having used a light meter.
I should have mentioned it first time around, but I would also open and close the lens aperture as well, to give that a bit of exercise, as they too can become a bit stiff after little use.

Hopefully it'll start working again, as I too had a similar camera for years, and it was worked like a workhorse. In fact it did me proud over a summer in the USA during the 1980's, teaching youngsters about picture taking and darkroom work. I have some great memories and pictures taken with it.

Terry S
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Old 7th April 2021, 03:20 PM
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If the film return is stiff it maybe the the film has been returned to the canister the wrong way something that is easy to do with this camera.
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Old 7th April 2021, 04:03 PM
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If the film return is stiff it maybe the the film has been returned to the canister the wrong way something that is easy to do with this camera.
Hi Mitch,

It’s interesting that you should say this as I can’t see any blatant issue with the shutter or aperture actions. Obviously it could be something imperceptible at high speeds.

But that said, I struggled to load the film and struggled to wind it back.

I suppose I’m just going to have to run another roll through it.
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