The number of people looking into do it yourself camera repair is rapidly increasing. Many do not succeed not because they find it hard to fix the problem, but eventually create several other damages during disassembling and assembling. Also, there are some parts that you just cannot touch during the camera repair process as these are basically adjusted at the factory.
Shop for the tools
Some basic tools are essential for a basic camera repair and you just cannot skip them. Purchase a whole stack of these basics: screwdrivers, tweezers and clamps, soldering irons, needle files, and wire. Other things that you’ll need is a brush for the lenses, a blower, fine sandpaper, magnifying glass, lint-free photographer wipes, Q-tips, and clean cotton rags. Of course, make sure you have cleaner and solvents, and some old toothbrushes that comes in handy to remove dirt from the tough spots.
Tip: Remember to keep the camera open overnight to let the glue and solvents dry properly.
The very first thing that you should do is to keep a tray upon your work table. Being organised is a must for a successful camera repair. There are so many small screws and you don’t want to lose any of them! Make sure it is bright and you should be able to hear if anything falls into it. Also, you can do all your work, especially lens fixes on a paper towel to keep track that the pieces do not roll.
Tip: Try video recording the disassembling process so that you can easily reassemble later.
Sometimes, a simple camera repair require nothing much than a good and thorough clean up. Just a little ether can get apertures, focus rings, shutters, slow speed mechanisms to work properly by dissolving any rigid residue. In fact, if everything goes well then excess lubricant is not even required. Tiny amounts of graphite can also help move some stubborn parts smoothly after some cleaning.
Tip: If you need to oil a part, then do it the way watch repairers do – dip a needle file into the oil and touch just the part that needs lubrication.
Under no circumstances get oil on the lens. Clean shutters with extreme caution using supplies available at your local hardware store.
To clean the lens, always, always, blow off the dust from the lens surface first and then moist a photographer’s wipes and then gently clean the glass. For long-term maintenance, protect the camera lenses with clear UV filters. Hence, each time you just need to clean the filter and not the lens.
Tip: Always be extra careful when wiping clean camera mirrors as these are front-silvered, so you risk the chances of accidentally removing the silver.
Replacing light seals
The camera light seal replacement is a long, tedious, and a dirty job, but it is nonetheless worth the effort. Use acrylic felt self-adhesive glue to cover light leaks. These are non-toxic and easy to remove when needed.
Tip: Take care not to get any adhesive on the screen, but if you do gently remove it so that there are no scratches.
For advanced camera repairs, it is necessary to have patience and attention to all details. If some of the parts need to be replaced, then look for similar parts from salvaged cameras – if you’re not too keen to restore to a “new” condition.
Always, first practice these repairs on a camera you don’t care too much. Again, in most cases, people repairing a camera by themselves usually damage the first one. So, make sure you know these aspects before trying your hand to fix a camera.