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Cleaning and lubricating my 'new' Crown Graphic
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Numinous



Joined: 25 Mar 2008
Posts: 8
Location: North west of Atlanta

PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:41 pm    Post subject: Cleaning and lubricating my 'new' Crown Graphic Reply with quote

I recently bought a Crown Graphic on ebay. Having checked the forum, I find it was probably made in 1951. The camera is in remarkable shape but I'd like to clean it up, especially the yoke and some of the metal. Does anyone have any suggestions regarding the best solvents and lubricants to use? The service manual recommends a grease with a military spec that is now Royco 27 which can only be bought in a 1.75 lb can for $75.00. Surely there is an adequate grease available in smaller quantities for less.

Thanks
Numinous
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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1617
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Solvent: lighter fluid (Ronsonol, Zippo)--don't get it on lens elements! OK for mechanicals

Gear lube ("grease"): Labelle 106 (hobby shop), A+D ointment (pharmacy)
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Numinous



Joined: 25 Mar 2008
Posts: 8
Location: North west of Atlanta

PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Henry. I'd considered lighter fluid, for the mechanicals only, of course, but I'd never heard of Labelle before. I'll give that a try.

Numinous
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 4081
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Laquer Thinner=metal cleaning
Mother's Billet metal polish=trim shinning
White lithium grease=luberication
Pledge Natural Beauty(yellow can)=body coverig & bellows clean and preserve.
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C. Henry



Joined: 13 Dec 2005
Posts: 360
Location: North East Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would suggest extreme caution when using lacquer thinner! It will dissolve many adhesives, paints & plastics that will not be harmed by naphtha (lighter fluid) or milder solvents.
If I recall correctly Labelle 106 is a plastic compatible white lithium grease.

C. Henry
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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1617
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Labelle 106 is plastic compatible, but I don't think it's white lithium. It has a clear appearance, like Vaseline, and contains TeflonĀ®, according to the package. Good stuff!
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C. Henry



Joined: 13 Dec 2005
Posts: 360
Location: North East Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Henry;

You're right! I was confusing a tube of Labelle 106 with a similar tube of "White Lithium Instrument Grease" that I have had since the late '70s or earlier.
Interestingly the WLIG tube is marked "not suitable for plastic components".

C. Henry
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 4081
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 5:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've never had a problem with laquer thinner disolving adheasives while denatured alcohol definately does.
I'll look for some Labelle 106 the next time I need some grease for cameras.
Moisten a small portion of a rag or cloth with laquer thinner then wipe the area that needs cleaning with the cloth and there won't be any problems.
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hurdy_gurdyman



Joined: 20 Aug 2004
Posts: 44
Location: Central Michigan

PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just thought I'd mention, for those who may not know this, if you plan on cleaning a lot of stuff in the future with lighter fluid, its a lot cheaper to go down to the hardware store and buy a gallon of Naphtha. This is the base chemical lighter fluid is typically made from. It'll cost around $15. I go through one of these every two or three years. Way cheaper than trying to buy the same amount in little lighter fluid cans. This stuff can be used for all kinds of cleaning jobs, including electronics and automotive things. Does great for shutter cleaning. Use in a well ventilated area with no sparks!

I'm pretty sure most of the old timers here already knew all this.

Dave
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Navy Moose



Joined: 09 Jun 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Boston, MA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 12:26 am    Post subject: Mineral oil for bellows? Reply with quote

Hello Friends,

I am the owner of a new (to me) Pacemaker Crown Graphic from around 1962. I just received the camera yesterday and it is in decent shape. I want to clean and moisten the bellows to help extend their life. When I got my Toyo 45C, it was recommended to me to use light mineral oil on the bellows.

I have just lubricated the bellows, about 1/4 of the bellows is inside the camera body and I can't reach it to apply mineral oil.

The bed and inside the camera body have dust or dirt on them. I saw that lighter fluid is acceptable as a cleansing agent. Would rubbing alcohol be acceptable as well?

Thank you!

Sincerely,

Navy Moose
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troublemaker



Joined: 24 Nov 2003
Posts: 715
Location: So Cal

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some good recomendations here.
Pledge I use on bellows and like for the inside of the camera after good dusting. Also works well on the outside covering.
Sometimes things need a little cleaning first so I use simple green, usually cut with some water to desried working strength.
For metal parts like the rails and such Ilike to clean with simple green straight and scrubwith a tooth brush. Then a nice wipe down with WD-40. Sometimes I just use one or the other. It often depends very much on whether I am doing a complete dissassembly or partial refurbishing. I like a variety of cleaning and dusting brushes to get junk out of the corners; sometimes a few q-tips for various things, though they leave fuzz, and once in a while use a little vacuming or light blowing.
I much prefer to tear the camera down so things can really be made nice and can be cleaned separately but that's not for everyone and time consuming.
When re-assembling the focussing track rails and guides I use a light general purpose grease; same for the focussing drive gear. Light oil and grease for the focus lock.
For the body release cable I like to soak it pretty good all along its lentgh with a q-tip tipped and sponged out with WD-40. Where it's rod slider with lock nuts are at the side of the Front standard I use a drop of Triflo when finished. The body release button guides get a drop top and bottom of TRi-flo.
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Navy Moose



Joined: 09 Jun 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Boston, MA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 1:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

troublemaker wrote:
Some good recomendations here.
Pledge I use on bellows and like for the inside of the camera after good dusting. Also works well on the outside covering.
Sometimes things need a little cleaning first so I use simple green, usually cut with some water to desried working strength.
For metal parts like the rails and such Ilike to clean with simple green straight and scrubwith a tooth brush. Then a nice wipe down with WD-40. Sometimes I just use one or the other. It often depends very much on whether I am doing a complete dissassembly or partial refurbishing. I like a variety of cleaning and dusting brushes to get junk out of the corners; sometimes a few q-tips for various things, though they leave fuzz, and once in a while use a little vacuming or light blowing.
I much prefer to tear the camera down so things can really be made nice and can be cleaned separately but that's not for everyone and time consuming.
When re-assembling the focussing track rails and guides I use a light general purpose grease; same for the focussing drive gear. Light oil and grease for the focus lock.
For the body release cable I like to soak it pretty good all along its lentgh with a q-tip tipped and sponged out with WD-40. Where it's rod slider with lock nuts are at the side of the Front standard I use a drop of Triflo when finished. The body release button guides get a drop top and bottom of TRi-flo.


Thank you for the quick and detailed reply. I'm going to print it out and keep it in the maintenance manual.

What is "simple green"? What is "TriFlo"? I'm not familiar with those substances.

I have a copy of a U.S. military overhaul instructions for the Speed Graphic dated 1958. It calls for tricloroethylene for cleaning metal components, but that looks a little dangerous after looking it up.

Navy Moose
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 4081
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Isopropyl Alochol works well as a cleaner but for vinal or leather coat wtih a vinal or leather sfotener afterwards. Lemon Pledge (the funiture polish in the yellow aresol can) has both lemon oil and bee's wax which works as well as lexol and better than armorall.

TriFlow is a light weight lubericant that penetrates and contains Teflon. It is recomended for skates, fishing reels, guns and any precision mechinical assembly where a high quality, long lasting light weight lubericant is needed. Check the lubericant aisle at your local hardware store.

Simple green is a degreaser/cleaner that is biodegradeable that does not leave a sticky residue like 409. Look for it at your local store on the cleaning supplies aisle or at the same hardware store you get the triflow.

Mineral oil may well work well on vinal but it will attract dust and dirt both eminies of photography and cameras. For the rear pleats of the bellows fold the infinity stop down, move the front standard to the front edge of the rails, extend the rails fully, then remove the focus panel (graflok back cameras), and while supporting the bellows from the inside wipe the rear pleats with a soft cloth over your fingertips of the other hand. For a more thorough cleaning go to http://www.southbristolviews.com/, download the Top RF Pacemaker Service manual under the Graflex manuals link and diconnect the bellows from the back and remove the bellows/front standard assembly from the camera.
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troublemaker



Joined: 24 Nov 2003
Posts: 715
Location: So Cal

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

1,1,1 tricloroethylene (I think I got that right?) has been discontinued but was a major solvent used in industry for many decades. It is a very fast evaporating liquid chemical that is not flamamble like acetone based products. When I worked in precision assembly we had barrels of it and used it constantly for wiping down microflat granite, guide rails and all sorts of stuff. another common use was as the solvent cooling agent in Rapid-Tap fluid and other machining liquids and cutting fluids.
Ships and other industry used it by the drum and pail as an electromotive cleaner (gen-sets etc), and I used to stock it in the marine industry in drum, pail, gal and spray cans. I belive it was also sold in spray cans as brake cleaner. It has been packaged and sold under many uses and titles. An example out here on the west coast was Safety-Solve. It wont blow you up, but it will sure as heck starve all the oxegen out of the air and I've never seen anything dry out and crack skin as fast. Fun stuff.
I have never found anything that does as well of a job making something imediately dry oil and residue free. Perfect for camera shutter blades and diaphrams. Nothing like it. And I believe when all stocks were depleted it was to be outlawed. That doesn't mean it's not being used and ruining the ozone in other countries. I never followed up that far.
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 4081
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 5:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep, you got it right. I used it in electronics repair work as a cleaner/degreaser.

1,1,1 Trichlorethane- http://www.temarry.com/chemicals/1,1,1_trichloreoethane.htm
called for in Graflex Graphic service manuals.

TriFlow lubericants- http://www.triflowlubricants.com/

Simple Green- http://www.simplegreen.com/products_all_purpose_cleaner.php
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