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Eclair s16 ACL II value


Tom Hepburn

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I hope it's okay to ask this question here. I purchased this camera 20 years ago. I haven't used it much and it's been sitting in its pelican case for 10 years. I'm trying to get a ballpark on the value if anyone can assist. 2 200ft mag and 1 400.

I'm including two pictures. I believe the battery belt and charger are toast. So I would need to replace that before selling.

I also have 4 lenses, various filters,  and tripod. Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you, 

Tom

20240616_135047.jpg

20240616_135240.jpg

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If the camera was working correctly last time, you should get it serviced properly and then market it fully working and ready to shoot camera body. You will get almost double the price of the body itself that way because ACLs often have bad motors and people don't want to risk it with "as is" cameras but working ones will sell.

I think they will go for approx from 2000 to 4000usd for the camera body and mags depending on if it is proved to work and serviced or not. The lenses you can check from ebay prices, it depends what they are and condition of them. Batteries are not worth much but working cables must be included

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50 minutes ago, Aapo Lettinen said:

I would assume something between 5500 and 8500 for the full kit if everything works, depends on what lenses included

Thanks Aapo,

 Is there a pinned post or something here that shows places that service? I live in Raleigh, NC, but am also in Chicagoland often.

If it's checked out by a reputable place is it considered "fully funcional" without buying film, developing, and scanning?

Tom

 

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That was my first question.  More detailed pictures might provide clues that the group wisdom can use to discern the answer, if the OP does not know.

Duncan

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18 hours ago, Tom Hepburn said:

Thanks Aapo,

 Is there a pinned post or something here that shows places that service? I live in Raleigh, NC, but am also in Chicagoland often.

If it's checked out by a reputable place is it considered "fully funcional" without buying film, developing, and scanning?

Tom

 

there seems to be at least this thread: https://cinematography.com/index.php?/forums/topic/87469-technicians-who-service-eclair-acls/#comments

 

Film test would be nice but probably it could be enough if it is CLAd by a proper technician specialised in these cameras

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Thanks for the input thus far folks. I looked at those servicing places. Bernie apparently passed away unfortunately. He was a nice guy and I had him service it when I first bought it.

Here are some updated pictures. Based on the name plate on the front of the camera it looks like it was converted by Les Bosher.

There's also a clip from one of the last times I used it. I'm not the best cinematographer, and the end is better in terms of seeing the capability. Keep in mind it was also compressed as bandwidth was a bit of an issue back then.

Additional Pictures

Let me know if there are any issues with the link. Thanks again.

Tom

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Definitely a Les Bosher conversion, so that's a good thing!

Looks to me like it comes with a TS-Cameflex adapter (pretty standard) which then has a Cameflex to Arri-B adapter in it (also pretty common).  And a C-mount to Nikon adapter.  All the lenses seem to be C-mount.

What's the Visual Products box with cable?

Duncan

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2 hours ago, Duncan Brown said:

I figured that was the on/off switch for the built in exposure meter?

Duncan

Typically the meter is always on once the switch is on, but maybe this is a late development. Serial number is 2947.   Is the inching knob sheared off or is this yet another type of setup I've never seen.

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2 hours ago, steven jackson said:

Typically the meter is always on once the switch is on, but maybe this is a late development. Serial number is 2947.   Is the inching knob sheared off or is this yet another type of setup I've never seen.

Oh good catch!  I also don't see the mirror-parking symbol on it, which you would expect for an ACL2 era motor.  Found another ACL2 picture online, with a sheared off inching knob, but it doesn't look like this.  You can see the guts of the one-way clutch, etc on that one, this is just a little hole in the cover.

Duncan

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6 hours ago, Duncan Brown said:

Oh good catch!  I also don't see the mirror-parking symbol on it, which you would expect for an ACL2 era motor.  Found another ACL2 picture online, with a sheared off inching knob, but it doesn't look like this.  You can see the guts of the one-way clutch, etc on that one, this is just a little hole in the cover.

Duncan

I have run across one other HD motor that did not have mirror parking but the circuitry will surely be present in the base to accommodate a motor with the parking feature.  The absence of the inching knob would be problematic on this one…but I do happen to know where a nice HD motor for this camera can be had!  😆 

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5 hours ago, steven jackson said:

I have run across one other HD motor that did not have mirror parking but the circuitry will surely be present in the base to accommodate a motor with the parking feature.  The absence of the inching knob would be problematic on this one…but I do happen to know where a nice HD motor for this camera can be had!  😆 

I was just going to say, you are in a prime position to tell us just how hard/expensive it is to find the correct motor for one of these cameras, if the one it has isn't up to snuff 🙂

Duncan

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Following up as service options are limited and could take months.

If I was to shoot 200ft, develop, scan, and post a clip would that meet the standard of "Fully functional" here?

Of course I would need to but a battery and brush up on my skills 😉 

Tom

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1 minute ago, Tom Hepburn said:

Following up as service options are limited and could take months.

If I was to shoot 200ft, develop, scan, and post a clip would that meet the standard of "Fully functional" here?

Of course I would need to but a battery and brush up on my skills 😉 

Tom

It could be argued that it might not be good for the camera or motor to run it if it's just been sitting for 10 years and perhaps many years more that it has last seen a service.  I would imagine those lubricants have hardened a bit.

 

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In the current (not-as-roaring-as-recently) market, I wonder if spending all the money and time on a complete service is even going to pay off enough in an increased sale price.  That's the kind of thing that only truly pays off if you USE your investment back out of it, as the new owner.  (Which sucks for the seller, who has to take comparatively less for it, but there you are.)

Duncan

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8 hours ago, Duncan Brown said:

In the current (not-as-roaring-as-recently) market, I wonder if spending all the money and time on a complete service is even going to pay off enough in an increased sale price.  That's the kind of thing that only truly pays off if you USE your investment back out of it, as the new owner.  (Which sucks for the seller, who has to take comparatively less for it, but there you are.)

Duncan

I think the issue is that if the camera is in uncertain condition no one would buy it unless it is really really cheap. People can't trust that the motor could be repaired if it is found out to be faulty, it seems to be really hit and miss and there is quite a few sad ACL owners who have dead motors and the camera just sitting on the shelf.

So the main point of getting the camera serviced would be to be able to sell it more easily. And of course one could ask much more for it too.

But if the motor is missing parts etc then it may not be worth it if the repair is very expensive. Replacement motor would be very expensive too. Getting one of my 2-speed ACL motors would cost less but people are not comfortable trading features for lower price (no shutter parking, two crystal speeds + wild variable, works on 18v, less sophisticated mounting system) though my motor has the advantage of being able to drive 400ft mags without issues unlike the standard ACL motor which is only good for 200ft

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1 hour ago, Aapo Lettinen said:

I think the issue is that if the camera is in uncertain condition no one would buy it unless it is really really cheap.

There's an in-between level of buyer (I am one of them) willing to be optimistic about the unknowns, based on what can be determined as knowns, so willing to pay more than parts prices, but not top dollar.  I have been seriously burned a couple of times like that, and have had great wins a couple of times... it balances out over time.  And the burns sometimes at least leave me with spare parts to help salvage the next sad case (though at the moment I don't have any ACL spares... very few people do, it seems.)

I just hope it goes to someone who can and will use it, whoever pays for the service and needed parts.  Nothing sadder than a good camera in a closet.

Duncan

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I would agree with Duncan that this camera in it's current state is not something you need to fire sale to get rid of.  The kinoptik viewfinder alone has a fair amount of value (somewhere around $1000, I reckon), as do the magazines and body.  So just as parts, it's valuable, but these cameras have a fairly simple and beautifully designed mechanism that's not terribly complicated to service and I would bet that this camera could be up and running in no time.  The stinker is the motor. The original motors are very well built and generally reliable but they are getting old and the typical issue comes from the circuitry starting to fail. To say they are hard to find would be an understatement. Typically, a good starting point would be to remove the magazine and turn the camera over manually to see if it feels difficult to turn or has points where it feels like it's binding.  If it's not turning over easily and smoothly, then I would not power it up.  The problem is that your motor no longer has an inching knob to advance the mechanism, so not sure how you can accomplish that.  This is a factor that would reduce the value of the whole kit as the motor is damaged.

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5 hours ago, steven jackson said:

I would agree with Duncan that this camera in it's current state is not something you need to fire sale to get rid of.  The kinoptik viewfinder alone has a fair amount of value (somewhere around $1000, I reckon), as do the magazines and body.  So just as parts, it's valuable, but these cameras have a fairly simple and beautifully designed mechanism that's not terribly complicated to service and I would bet that this camera could be up and running in no time.  The stinker is the motor. The original motors are very well built and generally reliable but they are getting old and the typical issue comes from the circuitry starting to fail. To say they are hard to find would be an understatement. Typically, a good starting point would be to remove the magazine and turn the camera over manually to see if it feels difficult to turn or has points where it feels like it's binding.  If it's not turning over easily and smoothly, then I would not power it up.  The problem is that your motor no longer has an inching knob to advance the mechanism, so not sure how you can accomplish that.  This is a factor that would reduce the value of the whole kit as the motor is damaged.

Thanks Steven,
I spoke with a gentleman at Visual Products yesterday and he said the same thing.
Thanks for the responses folks. It all makes sense and I'm thankful to get this information. The camera has been dormant for 10 years so although it was working fine at that time I'm planning on taking it to VP for a review and potential service.
I wouldn't want to spend this kind of money on something without it working if I were a buyer. In my mind something is either fully functional or parts. It could take up to a month for them to get to it, but I'm sure I'll post here if all is well with it. Actually I'll probably post it here even if it doesn't work and include the Visual Products assessment or repair. 
All the best for now, Tom
 

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9 minutes ago, Tom Hepburn said:

Thanks Steven,
I spoke with a gentleman at Visual Products yesterday and he said the same thing.
Thanks for the responses folks. It all makes sense and I'm thankful to get this information. The camera has been dormant for 10 years so although it was working fine at that time I'm planning on taking it to VP for a review and potential service.
I wouldn't want to spend this kind of money on something without it working if I were a buyer. In my mind something is either fully functional or parts. It could take up to a month for them to get to it, but I'm sure I'll post here if all is well with it. Actually I'll probably post it here even if it doesn't work and include the Visual Products assessment or repair. 
All the best for now, Tom
 

Do let us know how it works out.  We're all a curious lot here.

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A curious/nosy/obnoxious lot indeed!

Oh, and if you do decide to part it out, it's pretty clear we're also a ravenous lot when it comes to scarce ACL parts!

(I still want to know what the Visual Products box it comes with is.)

Duncan

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even if the camera has bad electronics it could be still run with my newly made ACL motors if the camera body is mechanically working correctly.

So only use as spare parts if the mechanics are absolutely irrepairable for some reason, otherwise just get original motor fixed/replaced with other original motor/ let me make a new different motor for it ...

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