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K3 - Aftermarket Quality Control?


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#1 Erdwolf_TVL

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 04:32 PM

From all around, I've heard that K3s tend to vary greatly in terms of quality.

Touch wood, mine should be arriving in about two weeks' time.

When it does, how should I go about testing it?

Obviously I will run some film through it at various speed and have it processed.

What other things should I be looking at?

What's the worst defects you've seen with these models?
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#2 3ldfilms

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 04:40 PM

Russian bullets holes are usually a bad sign.
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#3 Chris Keth

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 05:07 PM

Russian bullets holes are usually a bad sign.



Yeah, though I know someone who has an old B&H 16mm wing-mounted camera from korea that has a bullet lodged in the side and it still runs.

One of the best thing you can do to your camera would be to remove the loop formers. They often scratch the film and don't really help to load it much anyway. Here's a link that tells you how to do that, it's about a 20 minute job and only needs a good set of small screwdrivers.
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#4 Will Montgomery

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 06:38 PM

Its always good to check with a geiger counter to make sure it wasn't sitting somewhere in Chernobyl.

If you're not familiar with the camera, I would send it to a tech like Du-All in NYC and have them do the standard check out. Yes, it may cost you more than the camera to do, but then you can be sure the back focus is accurate and the mechanics check out ok.

I'd do the S-16 upgrade at the same time, you can still use it as standard 16 but there will be a little extra width if you want to move to a HD or 16:9 frame.
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#5 Andriy Pryymachenko

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 05:41 PM

What is the price of s16 upgrade?
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#6 22west

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 06:13 PM

What is the price of s16 upgrade?


There is pricing here to have the gate modified.

k3camera

Scroll down to "spare parts".

Note you cannot zoom after having this mod done or you will get a wierd effect.
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#7 Joe Gioielli

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 09:52 PM

You hear a lot about bad loop formers, mine are fine. The auto load works fine as well. I think you should shoot a test roll and see how it goes before you start fiddling with it.

I love my k3, but, like most Soviet designed items, it is what it is. It's kind of like an AK47. It does a basic job very well, but it has some very real limits. It's loud (making it harder to record wild sound), I find it poorly balanced (the shoulderstock helps), it only takes 100ft spools, the viewfinder is yellow tinged (this is only a viewfinder isuue, will not affect film), and that wind up motor gets old real quick.

But it's a reflex 16mm for less than 200 bucks! I just don't know if it's the kind of camera I'd invest it. Buy it uses it, enjoy it. And save your money for something a little nicer down the road.

Have fun with you new Russian pal
Joe
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#8 Will Montgomery

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 10:12 PM

For the S16 upgrade, modifying the viewfinder for S16 frame (many people will tell you this isn't possible, but it is), removing the loop formers, general lube and back focus alignment, I think I spent $500 or so. So yes, think hard before doing it, but having a S16 Reflex camera for under $800 is still a great deal.

What's killing me now is the winding. Shooting 400 to 600 ft in one day makes my arms hurt. :( I've been thinking about a Tobin motor, but then I really get to the point of spending too much money on that camera.

Not to mention the additional m42 lenses I've picked up on eBay.
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#9 Joe Gioielli

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Posted 15 January 2006 - 12:46 PM

What's killing me now is the winding. Shooting 400 to 600 ft in one day makes my arms hurt. :( I've been thinking about a Tobin motor, but then I really get to the point of spending too much money on that camera.

Here is a trick I use. Get a high quality wooden spoon, hardwood as opposed to pine if you can. Insert the thin end of the spoon through the little half moon opening where the metal folding handle meets the body. Use the spoon to wind it. It hard to explain but if you just play with it you'll see how it goes. Makes it a lot easier.

Joe
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#10 Clive Tobin

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 10:15 PM

...I've been thinking about a Tobin motor, but then I really get to the point of spending too much money on that camera...


Sorry but the Tobin TXM-20K, TXM-20, TXM-D and TXM-7/K motors are all now discontinued and we have none left. Anyone who is serious could check with our dealers such as Kiev USA and Du-All who may still have something.

We will likely not make another model since lots of people talk about doing it, but not many do after adding up the cost of the motor plus the required camera modification.
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#11 3ldfilms

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 11:08 PM

You can get a hand crack on ebay that is great for winding...but also lets you hand crank like an old silent movie camera from the 20s.

Ed
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rebotnix Technologies

Rig Wheels Passport

Willys Widgets

Opal

Ritter Battery

Visual Products

Glidecam

CineTape

Aerial Filmworks

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Metropolis Post

FJS International, LLC

Abel Cine

Technodolly

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Paralinx LLC

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Tai Audio

CineLab

The Slider

Wooden Camera