Today, I went to the annual flea market in my neighborhood and was lucky to get two interesting new members for my collection. One a Zeiss Ikonta 520 and the other one a "Welta Perle". Both cameras have been in really sad condition ... but ... the lenses are clean and the shutters still working smoothly like a swiss watch.
The thing is just ... and everybody, don't laugh please ... I can't get the Welta open Not really surprising for a pretty rotten camera, it jams. There is a lever, which obviously needs to be moved, but I am not 100% where to start the force and not breaking it. My speciality somehow ... breaking things, which actually opens smoothly ... if you know how
I didn't post a picture, because I didn't want to break any collectors heart by looking at the poor condition of this camera ... but if somebody has a similar one and could post a picture of it slightly open, it would be of tremendous help.
Some more specs: T,B,1-1/400sec Compur Rapid shutter, Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 1:2,8, F:7.5 cm ( Nr. 2002771 ) lens. A pre-war model, something around the late 30s ? Surprising, that it survived the war here in Japan and still exists. Saved it our of a box, together we just junk cameras ... what a shame
The release is a button on the top I think from memory, it is a straight push, in line with the edge of the drop front, the edge opposite the hinge. Some had a chrome button, some were buried under the leather, and you may have one like that. I do not think the strut on the front released anything on the Welta. Stephen.
Mmmmh ... maybe it is hard to imagine without pictures. So I took a few. The film advance knob is on the bottom of the camera ( but it doesn't seem to have any function for opening it ). On the top is nothing. There is a lever on the side, which certainly needs to be moved, I think ... but then ? Where will the camera exactly open ?
The front release is the small push knob on the top picture to the right of the main knob, and the release for the back should move to the left in the shot to release the back, it may need pressure! Folders backs are notorious to open, the frame work can distort, and the chromed sliding parts can rust etc., and make it very sticky. Once moved they soon free up. Stephen.
If the tab moves to the left, but the back does not open at that point, then it my need a bit of gentle prying open with a suitable small screwdriver or a knife blade, inserted carefully into any gap, and pressure applied carefully to lever open the back. Have a look around the join between the back and front sections, and see if rust, corrosion etc., is gluing the joint together, again it may need careful insertion of a blade to free things so that it can be opened up. The leatherette in the joints edges can swell with damp and jam things, and even old glue can have got damp and glued things up a bit. Once it is open it can be cleaned up and lubed on the catch and all should work. Stephen.
Thanks a lot Stephen !!! I got it open. I tried that with the screwdriver, but it's a risky game. However, I have been lucky not putting too much force to the wrong place.
Wow ... this camera looks as if sunken with the titanic. I just missed a few dead fishes inside ... hahaha ... but the surprising thing is, that neither the lenses nor the mechanics seems to be affected. And also the bellows are in perfect condition. Considering the optical condition of the rest, I think, that this is surprising.
I'll post some pics after I did some cosmetics Thanks again for the quick response to my post.