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Urgent: Newly bought K-3 jammed, worried.

Simon Jakobsson

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Hello! I've been lurking around this forum for a while reading up on all kinds of film-related knowledge. Well, a couple of days ago I bought a K-3 for an upcoming project. I've been loading it with dummy-film over and over, preparing for the real deal, on tuesday I'm supposed to shoot a test roll. Well, to the problem.


The first thing I noticed was that I heard a sound while handling the camera, a rattling sound as if something really small fell around inside the insides of the camera. Then later the camera jammed, after some thinking I realised that the rattling sound was gone, so whatever was in there was probably stuck in a cog. I rotated one of the cogs in the front using a pen (only taking the lens off), and the camera was rolling again, also the little rattling sound was back, this happened again, but since the fix was so easy I thought I'd wait with disassembling the whole thing.


But now it's really stuck, nothing happens when I press the shutter button, the single-frame increment button doesn't work either, I've tried to take off the front part, but the screws are really really tight, so I have to get a better screwdriver. The camera is wound up completely, so I'm guessing it's not a good idea opening up the body unless you really know what's going on.


I really like the camera, I haven't felt this exited about something since Christmas as a kid. And now I'm worried sick over the little guy.


So I'm looking for any tips on how to approach the problem, any knowledge you got about what could be done. Also, I really need to get to bed, is it bad for the camera to leave it fully wound up for 12 hours?

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Sorry to hear about this, but I feel your pain. My Arri S had a bad spill in the sand once, but the folks at Visual Products (the same place I purchased it from) fixed right up and its been fine ever since.


My advice to you would be to send it out to VP or (if they are too expensive) another reputable camera technician that can diagnose and fully service the camera so that you won't have any issues.

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The thing is though, I can get a new K-3 body for maybe $60-70 from ebay, so to pay probably more than that for a repair is not really worth it. I also love this, because it means I get to mess around with it.

Anyway, I opened it up, was nervous about the assembly but I felt it was worth the risk not having to think about that 'effin thing while shooting. Anyway, some gut-wrenching moments later I reached the insides and found a screw. As shown in the picture, this is not like the standard screw (that you unscrew to reach the insides for example), but it's larger, it has a flat thick cap, and also, it has no use (?).

I looked around, but for the life of me I could not find where this screw came from. Does anyone have a clue?


The screw is on the left side, the other one is the more common type.



Edited by Simon Jakobsson
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  • 2 weeks later...

True Gareth, too true, I started working on dirt bikes when I was 14 and inevitably had a number of spare screws and even pieces when I would finish, This carried through until the cars got to complicated to play with. Now when I work on cameras I shoot pictures as I go like leaving a trail through the jungle to back track.

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When ever I take a camera apart I always have the camera close, it got to a point where I ended up with a site devoted to dismantling and repairing Super8 cameras.




After awhile I got sick of temperamental canon cameras and jittery Kodak footage and bought my own K-3 with M42 mount, I really hope I do not do many repairs, at least not enough to justify another repair site.


Cheers, Gareth

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