Zenza Bronica S2a troubleshooting?

Discussion in 'Medium Format & Large Format' started by Shakedown St., Jul 15, 2017.

  1. Shakedown St.

    Shakedown St. TPF Noob!

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    Hello photo forums!

    About a year ago I decided I wanted to try my hand on a Zenza Bronica S2a, I have always wanted to shoot on medium format film. Everything appeared to be working until I went to snap a photo.

    The problem I am having is, when I twist the film it never locks into place, it rolls all the way to the end of the canister.

    I had some recommending I try a different back, I can confirm this problem does not go away with three different S2 backs.

    I decided to get some opinions at a few local camera shops, two owners told me Zenza Bronica specialists are rare to come by these days. Someone in the Washington DC area had come to their minds, but informed me it would probably be more expensive than buying another one.

    I also had the camera shops load the film just in case I was not loading it correctly, but no dice. Has anyone experienced this problem before on their S2's, help is much appreciated.

    [​IMG]


     
  2. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Is the shutter cocking while you wind? I had SQ's and SQ-A's for years. With the SQ's you could hold in a pin and that way could fire and wind the camera with the dark slide out and back off. Not sure if the S2's is same design. I think you might have a shutter cocking problem. Or the camera is not sensing a back is installed. And not cocking the shutter when turning the handle.
     
  3. Shakedown St.

    Shakedown St. TPF Noob!

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    Exactly, that's what I feel it is. You are supposed to hear a click as tension builds and that's when you know you can fire your next shot. Tension never builds, it just keeps cranking to the very end of each roll I load in. Would that be really a complicated fix?

    Occasionally it would work for one or two shots, then break again. It very may well be the cocking/advance geartrain malfunctioning.

    I also know there was this problem...

    "With a Brownie-Camera; ie "Bronica" a old failure mode is some careless person uses a tripod with too long a 1/4-20 tripod screw. The screw if too long then bottoms out in the female 1/4-20 counter-bore on the camera body; then a "chunk" of the tripods socket is thus loose inside the camera. It then can foul/clog/jam the shutter.

    The "fix" is thus you remove the bottom and remove the wayward piece. This issue goes back into known Bronica issues 40+ years ago. Thus an "as is" broken Bronica on ebay may or may not be just a dumb simple jam."
     
  4. cgw

    cgw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The "trouble" is likely a worn out gear train. Had an S I bought cheap that did this and just pitched it after a year of light use. The focal plane shutter Bronicas are ancient and most led hard working lives prolonged by repairs. Uncertain whether Frank Marshman(aka "Camera Wiz)is still working. He was among the few who repaired these.

    https://www.manta.com/c/mm0yggb/camera-wiz-camera-repair

    With respect, you need to look into buying the newest MF camera you can afford.
     
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  5. compur

    compur No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Maybe it's time to trade in that old jalopy on something a little newer. The Bronica EC-series cameras are a little younger and more reliable and they use the same lenses as the S2a.
     
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  6. cgw

    cgw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Problem, though, is that devilishly complicated split mirror system that's even harder to fix. Sorry but the focal plane shutter Bronicas are just too troublesome, especially given the slim chance of getting them repaired now. The OP should get what they can for that set-up and move forward a couple of decades.
     
  7. compur

    compur No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    meh

    I think the OP should do what he or she wants to do.

    The EC-series are fine cameras. Even picky Steve Gandy thinks so:
    Bronica EC
     

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