Yashica Electro GX shutter problem
I've just purchased an old Yashica Electro GX in very nice condition... but (there's always a "but") after I got the thing home and started playing with it a bit (with batteries but without film) I discovered an odd problem.
About every third time I cock the advance lever, as I pull on the lever, the shutter opens without my touching the shutter release button. And the shutter then stays open until I press the shutter release button.
This only happens about every third time I cock the lever. The other times, everything seems to work as it should. The situation is most noticable when I have the back open as I cock the lever; my action of pulling the lever corresponds to the movement of the shutter opening, and then the shutter stays open until I press the release button. I can see right through the lens, which is clearly wide open even though my finger hasn't yet touched the release.
I'm really hoping that someone out there has some clues for me. I should point out that, aside from this problem, everything else about this camera is in excellent condition, as though someone has left it carefully stored in their closet since 1979. Maybe this problem is why this camera seems in almost "as-new" condition?
#1. "RE: Yashica Electro GX shutter problem" | In response to Reply # 0Merlin Basic MemberWed 25-Jul-01 03:15 AM
The GX is the SLR, not the rangefinder, right? If I had to guess, I'd say the mechanical linkages between the mirror release and shutter button have began to gum up with age. Now, I take no responsibility for the outcome, this is entirely at your own risk, but my first move would be to undo the screws on the bottom of the camera, remove the metal bottom plate, and take a close look inside. You should be able to see the bottom ends of the linkages.
Operate the shutter a few times and observe what's happening with those linkages - can you see what's causing the jam? If you can clearly see the bottom of one of the levers hesitate or stick, that might be the problem. Apply ONE DROP (not two drops or one squirt...) of a 50:50 mixture of lighter fluid and sewing machine oil to the point that rubs, and that may free it off.
If that doesn't do the trick, you'll need to do more complex surgery involving removing the leatherette from the front of the camera and opening the front up to get at more linkages. That may be the point at which it might be better to get a professional repair person involved.
Hope this helps.
#2. "RE: Yashica Electro GX shutter problem" | In response to Reply # 1Martin Basic MemberWed 25-Jul-01 09:24 AM
Hi Mike, thanks for your reply. But actually the Electro GX is a rangefinder model, perhaps the last Electro, I'm not sure. Roughly similar in appearance to the Electro CC. (Check out http://www.cameraquest.com/yash35gx.htm for more info, if you're interested).
Would this affect your advice?
#3. "RE: Yashica Electro GX shutter problem" | In response to Reply # 2Merlin Basic MemberWed 25-Jul-01 09:35 AM
Yes, I'm very sorry, and I should spotted it! I was thinking of a completely different camera, having recently successfully fixed a similar problem on a colleague's Electro TL. Wrong camera - of course you have the rangefinder.
I have to admit it sounds like an electronic problem rather than mechanical, and I'm now out of my depth. I have several Yashica Electros but not this particular (very nice) model, but other than cleaning up battery compartments and so on, I've not had to do any repairs.
So allow me to refer you to an expert: Joe Marcel Wolff (The Yashica Guy)
has a very informative site, I've been in touch with him before, and he'll probably be able to help you better.
Your next best bet would be a post on the ACE Forum - lots of top-notch technical experts there:
Keep us posted, will you? This may be a Nikon forum, but plenty of us have other systems too.