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Technicians who service Eclair ACLs


Heikki Repo
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I think it'd be useful to compile a list which technicians service Eclairs. As many have probably noticed, Eclair ACLs have recently become quite sought after. Those cameras are going to need servicing, sooner or later.

So, let's start:

  1. Super16 inc. / Bernie O'Doherty. Currently not taking any new work / March 2021
  2. Les Bosher Does he service cameras or only modify them for S16?

 

Moderator comment: The latest edited version of the techs list should be on page 5. If it gets moved, a link to it, wherever it is, will be in the pinned thread Useful links for Eclair ACL on the forum.

Edited by Gregg MacPherson
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Five more places / people. I haven't asked them personally, but these names were given to me:

3. Visual Products / Paul (Ohio)

4. Alan Gordon Enterprises (LA)

5. Evan Ferrario (LA) Evan is not a full time technician but does maintenance on the side

6. Conci Nelson Conci is not a full time technician but has been trained by Bernie and is very good with rebuilding ACL magazines

7. Photo-Proßwitz (Mannheim, Germany)  This one is closer to third hand knowledge so no idea of their experience with ACL.

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1 hour ago, Heikki Repo said:

Photo-Proßwitz (Mannheim, Germany)  This one is closer to third hand knowledge so no idea of their experience with ACL.

Their website says that they took over the service from Ritter Media and they repair what looks like mostly Super 8 mm cameras and projectors.

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Really good effort Heikki.

Parallel to this effort,  do we need a separate thread to help keep track of where all the ACL parts are. A few years ago I sold a lens to Gerard, art-media.com who had a huge inventory of Eclair parts. He told me he was selling up, and then he disappeared. He had not yet told me who he sold to, but I remember, it was one or two guys in Europe I think.

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Thanks Heikki! 
I wonder if the fellow who put out the HD-144 Super 16 conversion kit (Mark?) is still involved with the camera world? I had my first ACL converted with that kit but that was well over a decade ago and I believe he was already done and just getting rid of back stock. It was so amazing to be able to purchase a newly manufactured ACL S16 gate and shutter. 

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4 hours ago, Gregg MacPherson said:

Gerard, art-media.com who had a huge inventory of Eclair parts..

He said (not me said) that he bought the entire parts stock when Eclair went out of bussiness. This could be the motherload. And it may languish on the shelf somewhere if it's not distributed.

 

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7 hours ago, Gregg MacPherson said:

Really good effort Heikki.

Parallel to this effort,  do we need a separate thread to help keep track of where all the ACL parts are. A few years ago I sold a lens to Gerard, art-media.com who had a huge inventory of Eclair parts. He told me he was selling up, and then he disappeared. He had not yet told me who he sold to, but I remember, it was one or two guys in Europe I think.

Just so that nobody goes sending email to the owner of that domain, there is one "s" missing from the end of the domain name...

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Heikki,

can you find Gerard, or the parts? I don't know what was happening to him...going out of business...something...he seemed a bit anxious when I last had email with him. The parts may have been bought at a cheap price by people that are not effectively onselling them.

One guy in Europe who was always seemingly in the know was Boriss Belay. He's been on this forum. I may still have an old email address.

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3 minutes ago, Gregg MacPherson said:

Heikki,

can you find Gerard, or the parts? I don't know what was happening to him...going out of business...something...he seemed a bit anxious when I last had email with him. The parts may have been bought at a cheap price by people that are not effectively onselling them.

There is one person on Linkedin who might be the right person. I already sent a message to him. But considering that many join that service but aren't active there, it might be that I won't get any answer.

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6 hours ago, Edward P. Davee said:

Thanks Heikki! 
I wonder if the fellow who put out the HD-144 Super 16 conversion kit (Mark?) is still involved with the camera world? I had my first ACL converted with that kit but that was well over a decade ago and I believe he was already done and just getting rid of back stock. It was so amazing to be able to purchase a newly manufactured ACL S16 gate and shutter. 

What might be the surname of Mark?

I was able to find his old webpages, very informative and might even contain ACL information not available elsewhere:

https://web.archive.org/web/20040215100644/http://members.aol.com/super16acl/menu.htm

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3 minutes ago, Gregg MacPherson said:

That's the reason why people appear inactive, they are cautious.

Cautious about what? Honestly interested to know what you mean.LinkedIn is for people to connect on a business level and when you sign up, you know that this is what it is for. I'm no particular fan since I get a lot of people offering their services but I don't know what else you expect it should be. If you are not interested, don't sign up.

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1 minute ago, Gregg MacPherson said:

@Uli...I had to sign up to see what it was. I thought it (Linkedin) would be less aggressive than facebook, but I was surprised at the volume of unwanted information from them. It was difficult to shut it off...

So... cautious about having their privacy invaded

Yeah, they try and get you to sign up to LinkedIn Pro which is annoying but they run a business, there is no such thing as a free lunch. I quit Facebook a few years ago and feel better for it. I don't go on LinkedIn much but not for privacy concerns. You are publishing a profile with your work details for everyone to see. It's your choice. If you are concerned about privacy, I'm afraid we're all vulnerable as soon as we switch on our phones.

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10. Cine Facilities Cine Facilities mentioned that they don't have previous experience with ACL (as of March 2021) nor do they have spare parts for them (does anyone these days, though?) but people have been asking them re: Eclairs and they promised they can take a look. They do have considerable experience with Aatons.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 3/27/2021 at 8:14 PM, Heikki Repo said:

I think it'd be useful to compile a list which technicians service Eclairs. As many have probably noticed, Eclair ACLs have recently become quite sought after. Those cameras are going to need servicing, sooner or later.

So, let's start:

  1. Super16 inc. / Bernie O'Doherty. Currently not taking any new work / March 2021

 

According to another poster on this forum who has recently called Bernie, he is now retired.

Edited by Heikki Repo
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  • 6 months later...
  • 4 months later...

Hey friends-

Sorry to derail the thread with a question but this seems like the most relevant spot- a friend is looking for a shop to do a super 16 ACL conversion, anybody know who still provides the service? 
Duall did mine but last I spoke with them they have stopped because of parts shortages, going to give them a ring tomorrow to see if that’s still the case. 
offhand I know Les is still doing them but beyond that no real idea, something in the US would be welcome on account of shipping/VAT- any suggestions are more than welcome! 

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Hey Travis,
Paul Scaglione at Visual Products is still there I think. VP have the reutation for the most thorough and high quality conversions. Les B. will be cheaper but there are less elements to his conversion. There may yet be one or two techs in Europe that are able. 

Trying to remember all the elements for a full ACL conversion by VP (someone let me know if I miss something)....gate, shutter mod, not sure if the mirror is moded, mirror linkage, lens re centred, magnifying block sometimes removed from the ground glass, ground glass re etched by SURCO with VP S16 design, mag rollers machined on S16 edge.

The VP S16 ground glass is very nice to use. Many converted ground glass are crude, not a complete re etch, some do almost nothing at all.

I don't think any ACL conversions ever had machining of the pressure plate, loop formers, guide shoes or drive sprocket. So it seems sensible to think that the later mags with the separate centre pressure plate will be better for S16. Only a very small area is actually  under pressure, just like an SR.

Bruce at Aranda once told me that some people just used unmodified mags for S16, with no problems.

Another option. I have a bare S16 body, no motor, view finder or side handle module, converted by Paul at VP...that I was going to sell. I needs service, it was making a tick, tick, tick noise like the shutter was just touching the body casting. Paul thought it might take only 2-3 hours and would be a CLA. If interested, PM me and I can forward Pauls comments. I noticed it also needs a new 9 pin canon socket, so that will add cost. I have the part already. I don't know how to price this body, so maybe it has to go to eBay....

It used to be the only sane advice was to not convert, just wait and buy an already converted S16 version, save money. But cameras are either super scarce or priced too high by brokers...

PM me if I can help.
Gregg

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53 minutes ago, Gregg MacPherson said:

Hey Travis,
Paul Scaglione at Visual Products is still there I think. VP have the reutation for the most thorough and high quality conversions. Les B. will be cheaper but there are less elements to his conversion. There may yet be one or two techs in Europe that are able. 

Trying to remember all the elements for a full ACL conversion by VP (someone let me know if I miss something)....gate, shutter mod, not sure if the mirror is moded, mirror linkage, lens re centred, magnifying block sometimes removed from the ground glass, ground glass re etched by SURCO with VP S16 design, mag rollers machined on S16 edge.

The VP S16 ground glass is very nice to use. Many converted ground glass are crude, not a complete re etch, some do almost nothing at all.

I don't think any ACL conversions ever had machining of the pressure plate, loop formers, guide shoes or drive sprocket. So it seems sensible to think that the later mags with the separate centre pressure plate will be better for S16. Only a very small area is actually  under pressure, just like an SR.

Bruce at Aranda once told me that some people just used unmodified mags for S16, with no problems.

Another option. I have a bare S16 body, no motor, view finder or side handle module, converted by Paul at VP...that I was going to sell. I needs service, it was making a tick, tick, tick noise like the shutter was just touching the body casting. Paul thought it might take only 2-3 hours and would be a CLA. If interested, PM me and I can forward Pauls comments. I noticed it also needs a new 9 pin canon socket, so that will add cost. I have the part already. I don't know how to price this body, so maybe it has to go to eBay....

It used to be the only sane advice was to not convert, just wait and buy an already converted S16 version, save money. But cameras are either super scarce or priced too high by brokers...

PM me if I can help.
Gregg

Gregg, 

thanks so much, you’re a wealth of ACL knowledge and this is much appreciated- I know they already have the ACL body and were just asking about s16 conversion (and I also know the benefits to super-ing do come at a cost but I believe they’re trying to go this route to bring the camera onto more paid work and we all know producers love super over normal) 

 

I’ll definitely float the option of buying your body and will PM if they want to go for it- again, really appreciate the heads up! 

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I was just thinking that it may save money, depending on the costs for converting the camera body.  Can you let us all know what VP's price is for the conversion? Conversion of the body alone? If you have a really clean late model ACL II and can afford the conversion, maybe that is the way.

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Bit of bad news for the thread but just called Visual Products this morning (3/21/22) and was informed they are no longer doing ACL super 16 conversions as they don’t have the parts necessary. 
 

I’m going to inquire with Les and see if that’s still an option. 

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