Common problems with cameras

We get asked many times for help with all types of faults and problems with camera and lenses, here are just a few common issues.

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  1. Most common repairs...

    Digital cameras with spots on your photographs - Most digital cameras will suffer this problem especially DSLRs. Dust and other debris build up on the filter in front of the CCD (sensor) and as a result show as out of focus blobs or fuzzy marks on your pictures. Some people try to clean it themselves and cause other problems like scratching the filter or damaging the shutter blades. We can professionally clean it for you so you know it will be done correctly. It normally takes about 5 days to complete but we do have an express service which is 24hrs, do check with us first to book it in with us at a convenient time. Compact digital camera can also have this problem, we can clean it for you.

    Digital cameras with cracked or dead LCD screens - Many cameras such as Sony - A350, T200. Nikon - D40, S220. Lumix - TZ7, FX-01. Canon - 400D, Ixus 70. Fuji - J10, S7000 and many other models can have this problem. We can replace the LCD screen on most cameras.

    Digital cameras using Compact Flash cards - These cameras have two rows of receiving pins within the camera body. The pins can bend or in some cases can snap off. The usual symptoms are - hard to insert memory cards, camera reporting no card inserted or an error message such as CF Error etc. We recommend removing the battery ASAP as if a pin has broken off and entered the camera then it could short out the camera causing other problems. Then get it to us for repair or contact us for further information.
    We also recommend having any cards you intend to use again checked over because if there is any damage to the card it can bend the pins.

    Fungus growing in camera lenses or binoculars - Fungus can grow on the coatings of lens elements or prisms in binoculars. If we catch it in time they can be successfully cleaned.

    Binoculars with double vision - If you have knocked or dropped your binoculars then it can cause double vision and requires collimation. It is easy to check, just look through them and if the image circle looks like it is two image circles and your eyes feel strained then they have this problem. We can recollimate them for you which will bring the image back to as it should be.


    Repair Specials...

    Canon EOS 5 - The mode dial becomes loose or ineffective - Requires a modified mode dial to be fitted.

    Canon T90 - Shutter not firing - Quite common, the release mechanism requires repair and adjustments.

    Digital cameras using Compact Flash cards - Canon 5D, 40D, 400D, Nikon D70, D200, Coolpix 5700 plus many others - Watch out for bent pins in the camera or hard to insert cards. We get a lot of them in with bent or snapped off pins, this can cause other problems. We can normally sort this out for you.

    Digital SLRs and compact cameras - Cracked LCD screen - This is a common problem, the LCD screens are made from very thin glass and can crack if pressure is applied to the outer plastic window. It can also crack if the camera is subject to a knock or being dropped etc. We can replace the LCD screens on most cameras, please ask.

    Digital SLRs - Fuji S5 Pro, Nikon D700, Canon 400D, Sony Alpha, Olympus E500 etc. - Spots on the pictures usually means the CCD (sensor) requires cleaning. We can clean the CCD if this is the cause of the fault. Don’t try cleaning it yourself unless you know exactly what you are doing as you could scratch or mark the low pass filter which covers the CCD. Express service available, please ask. Spots on pictures can also happen on the smaller compact digital cameras, we can help if you have this problem.

    Film cameras 1960's onwards - Check for sticky light seals around the film door, hinge etc. also in the front of the camera near the mirror. The foam light seals usually break down and become sticky or crumble away, we can fit new seals if required.

    Kodak Carousel projectors - Slide magazine not moving on or slides shoot up into the air - Service and adjustments are required.

    Minolta X300 / X700 - Shutter release problems - This is also common. The camera has corrosion or leaking capacitors. We can usually clean the affected parts and replace any faulty capacitors.

    Olympus OM1 / OM2 - These cameras are two of our favourites. They do however have one or two problems. 1) Low meter readings - This is usually caused by corrosion or a bad earth in the meter circuit. 2) Wind mechanism feels lumpy or needs two strokes to wind the film on; the wind pawl mechanism needs servicing. We can also replace the prism in the viewfinder if it is starting to deteriorate or discolour.

    Olympus OM1 / 1n - The OM1 and OM1n meter circuit was designed for use with a 1.35v mercury battery. These batteries are no longer available for sale in the UK. (Don’t despair!) We can convert the circuitry to take a modern available battery and calibrate the readings.

    Pentax ME / ME Super - Intermittent under or over exposures - This is quite common. The camera requires a service and adjustments.

    Weston meters - IV, V, Euro Master etc. - It is quite common for the selenium cell to become inefficient giving a low output, hence a low reading. The new cells are not available at present to rectify this problem. We can replace the glass over the scale if you require and sort out sticking meter needles.

    Compur shutter cameras - Rolleiflex, Hasselblad, Retina, Super Ikonta etc. - Shutter speeds or delayed action sticks (quite common), requires service and adjustments, sometimes a new main spring is needed.

    Prontor shutter cameras - Agfa, Ilford, Voigtlander etc. - Shutter speeds or delayed action sticks (quite common), requires service and adjustments, sometimes a new main spring is needed.

    Binoculars and Telescopes - We are getting increasingly more enquiries regarding fungus and alignment problems with optical devices. Our workshop can successfully remove fungus in most cases and set up alignment.

    We repair some flash units - Bowens, Courtenay, Elinchrom, Prolinca and Metz etc. please check with us first.

    Eumig P8 - (standard 8 projector) rubber drive belts, usually in stock. Please ask.

    Sankyo Dualux - (dual 8 projector) rubber drive belts, usually in stock. Please ask.


    Over the past few years we are seeing increasing numbers of lenses with fungal growths. It is easy to check for - open up the aperture and hold the lens to a bright light. If you see any dark patches which may look like cobwebs then the lens needs to be looked at. If you catch it in the early stages we can clean the affected elements successfully.

    Most cameras from the late 1960’s onward, quite often need the light seal foam on the back door or mirror area replacing. We have various thickness of light seal foam to accommodate most cameras and can replace this for you if required. You can check the seals yourself by touch; if they feel sticky or hard and crumbling they need replacing.
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