A couple years back I was given the opportunity to purchase a couple TLR cameras from a local photographer. My Yashica MAT-124 camera has been my most used camera and still continues to be, so I wasn’t really in the market for another TLR, but my good friend Paul was looking for an inexpensive way into medium format film photography. I ended up buying the camera, testing it and selling it to Paul which has been one of his go-to cameras for the last couple years.
Not long after selling it, I started thinking about the images it produced and how simple it was to use. In 2018, I broke down and found a cheap one on eBay and picked it up for a good deal. Soon as I unboxed it, it was apparent that it didn’t match the online description – the viewfinder hood was broken, both the self-timer lever and flash sync lever were missing and the shutter wouldn’t cock nor fire. I contacted the seller who was apologetic, refunded my money and told me just to keep the camera as it wasn’t worth the shipping. So it’s just been sitting on my shelf for over a year now. I started to think about just tearing it down to see if there was anything that could be done. I found this awesome web page that details breaking down a Yashica D to service the shutter, so I decided to just go for it.
Once I had the lens completely opened up and all the mechanics were showing, I found the broken flash sync lever jamming up one of the gears. Since there was no self-timer lever and the flash sync lever was busted, I completely removed the mechanics for those two systems which freed up a bunch of space and the shutter mechanism started working perfectly. I exercised it for a bit before assembling the camera back together. I also cleaned up the lenses and mirror as they were quite dusty.
Over the weekend, I ran a test roll of Kodak TMax 100 through the camera and it seems to work perfectly now. There were a couple of overlapping frames, but I think that was my fault as I’m used to a different film winder on my Yashica MAT-124. Below are some shots of both the repair and the results!
Camera: Yashica D
Lens: Yashikor 80mm f/3.5
Film: Kodak TMax 100
Developer: Kodak HC-110 (Dilution B) at 21.4C for 5:21 minutes
Scanner: Epson V850
Catalog ID: 2019-009