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Bell & Howell 70 DR Issues


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#1 William Tooker

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Posted 04 November 2009 - 01:37 PM

A while back, I purchased a Bell & Howell 70 DR that appeared in pretty good condition; it seemed to run flawlessly, as well. Yesterday, I ordered some film to try it out and decided to see how it was holding up when I got home. To my dismay, the camera now makes a terrible screeching/grinding noise when wound up and run, and certainly does not run at frame rate. Could it just need some oil, or is there something much more fatal happening? Thanks for any support you guys can offer; this has really got me bummed out.

Will,

PS: As I've been reading around, I've been noticing people indicating that running the camera dry (at least at a high frame rate) is abysmally awful for the thing. Why is this?
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#2 Art Leal

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Posted 05 November 2009 - 12:12 AM

A while back, I purchased a Bell & Howell 70 DR that appeared in pretty good condition; it seemed to run flawlessly, as well. Yesterday, I ordered some film to try it out and decided to see how it was holding up when I got home. To my dismay, the camera now makes a terrible screeching/grinding noise when wound up and run, and certainly does not run at frame rate. Could it just need some oil, or is there something much more fatal happening? Thanks for any support you guys can offer; this has really got me bummed out.

Will,

PS: As I've been reading around, I've been noticing people indicating that running the camera dry (at least at a high frame rate) is abysmally awful for the thing. Why is this?



Hi Will:

The same thing happened on mine, and it did also occur after running it at a high frame rate for a slo mo scene. Here's an excerpt of what info I found on a Filmo Yahoo group:

- Great to have found this group. I'm new to 16mm and recently purchased a Filmo
- 70DL. Unfortunately I believe I broke the spring since now it runs at its fastest
- speed and cannot be slowed down. Can anyone recommend a repair shop?


-- It sounds like you are having trouble with the governor.
-- Unless your problem is with the linkage on the governor,
-- it is not a trivial repair. I can't help with any re-
-- commendations for repair shops but used Filmo's show up
-- eBay quite frequently and with a little patients, a good
-- one can be had quite reasonably.



I might also mention that somewhere I read that disassembling the Filmo can be dangerous, since the main spring is under a tremendous amount of pressure and repair house technicians use a metal plate to protect themselves from a recoil. How much of this is true I cannot confirm.

Since then I've purchased another one. I do place a few drops of oil in the holes indicated, but am also wondering if there's anything more I should be doing to ensure it runs smoothly.

Art
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#3 John Sprung

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Posted 05 November 2009 - 01:11 AM

Yes, it does sound like the governor. And the springs are dangerous, especially when fully wound up. You want to run it all the way down before taking it apart. Even then, having the spring pop out of the case releases a lot of energy, and is no fun at all.



-- J.S.
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#4 William Tooker

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 04:44 PM

Well, good news: I believe I have fixed the problem! Seeing as I had the camera already partially disassembled to clean/investigate any superficial issues, I decided to break it down piece by piece and determine the origin of the grinding. The first component to come off was the lens mount and shutter unit; after removing this, I wound the camera ever so slightly and let it run at eight FPS just to take it easy on the thing. Lo and behold, no more screeching. Further, it seemed to be running at proper speeds; I dared not test it above forty-eight FPS, but eight, twelve, sixteen, twenty-four, thirty-two, and forty-eight FPS modes all functioned beautifully, which led me to believe it was the shutter making that God-awful racket. After a few minutes of my father and I (both lifelong tinkerers) examining the components of the shutter, we made quick work of disassembling it. While studying how it worked, we noticed that if the latch was held open, the shutter would freely spin (as it should when the shutter release button is depressed) and it would make faint screeching noises. Once the thing was apart, we lubricated the metal rod which the shutter was seated on, checked for detritus stuck in the mechanisms, put it back together, oiled it, and fired it all up.

Current condition? Quiet as a butterfly and completely operational. I must say that I am thoroughly excited for having almost completely disassembled, repaired, and reassembled my first 16mm camera. I couldn't be happier about it working, as I intend to take it (and my cleaned up Isolette I) to Spain when I visit a friend and film some of Europe while we travel. :)
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#5 Charles MacDonald

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 10:58 PM

Once the thing was apart, we lubricated the metal rod which the shutter was seated on, checked for detritus stuck in the mechanisms, put it back together, oiled it, and fired it all up.

Current condition? Quiet as a butterfly and completely operational. I must say that I am thoroughly excited for having almost completely disassembled, repaired, and reassembled my first 16mm camera.

CONGRATULATIONS! That is excellent news.

There is a plug at the centre of the turret which is supposed to be an Oil Hole, but is easy to overlook. I believe that is intended to lube the shutter shaft.
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#6 Art Leal

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Posted 07 November 2009 - 01:50 AM

Well, good news: I believe I have fixed the problem! Seeing as I had the camera already partially disassembled to clean/investigate any superficial issues, I decided to break it down piece by piece and determine the origin of the grinding. The first component to come off was the lens mount and shutter unit; after removing this, I wound the camera ever so slightly and let it run at eight FPS just to take it easy on the thing. Lo and behold, no more screeching. Further, it seemed to be running at proper speeds; I dared not test it above forty-eight FPS, but eight, twelve, sixteen, twenty-four, thirty-two, and forty-eight FPS modes all functioned beautifully, which led me to believe it was the shutter making that God-awful racket. After a few minutes of my father and I (both lifelong tinkerers) examining the components of the shutter, we made quick work of disassembling it. While studying how it worked, we noticed that if the latch was held open, the shutter would freely spin (as it should when the shutter release button is depressed) and it would make faint screeching noises. Once the thing was apart, we lubricated the metal rod which the shutter was seated on, checked for detritus stuck in the mechanisms, put it back together, oiled it, and fired it all up.

Current condition? Quiet as a butterfly and completely operational. I must say that I am thoroughly excited for having almost completely disassembled, repaired, and reassembled my first 16mm camera. I couldn't be happier about it working, as I intend to take it (and my cleaned up Isolette I) to Spain when I visit a friend and film some of Europe while we travel. :)


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#7 Art Leal

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Posted 07 November 2009 - 01:58 AM

Current condition? Quiet as a butterfly and completely operational. I must say that I am thoroughly excited for having almost completely disassembled, repaired, and reassembled my first 16mm camera. I couldn't be happier about it working, as I intend to take it (and my cleaned up Isolette I) to Spain when I visit a friend and film some of Europe while we travel. :)




Yes, congrats on your efforts! I tried the same a short time ago but the issue with mine is that the mechanism which controls speed no longer does. When the cam is wound even slightly, the thing sounds like a jet engine since it's running at top speed and nothing can slow it down. Also, thanks to Charles for mentioning the turret-located oil hole. Wasn't aware of it.
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#8 Guy Bodart

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Posted 30 November 2009 - 10:35 PM

Yes, congrats on your efforts! I tried the same a short time ago but the issue with mine is that the mechanism which controls speed no longer does. When the cam is wound even slightly, the thing sounds like a jet engine since it's running at top speed and nothing can slow it down. Also, thanks to Charles for mentioning the turret-located oil hole. Wasn't aware of it.



Those cameras are very old! I own 2 new old stock 70DR with 3 Angenieux on each (One of them take the 40oft mag and motor) . 99% of problems comes from lack of lubrication. So, check all the points and lubricate the camera with any oil machine.It's very important that the camera doesn't run without oil.

Guy
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#9 Billy Furnett

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Posted 01 December 2009 - 12:30 PM

Is there any recommended up keep for the external motors or mags?
I have a military KM with motor and mag.

Thanks
:)
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#10 MJ Stubbs

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Posted 09 March 2010 - 02:56 PM

Regarding the oil/lubrication of the Filmo 70 series (I have a filmo DA70)
What oil is recommended to use on the thing?
I mean current,over the counter oil.
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#11 Hal Smith

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Posted 09 March 2010 - 03:13 PM

Regarding the oil/lubrication of the Filmo 70 series (I have a filmo DA70)
What oil is recommended to use on the thing?
I mean current,over the counter oil.

The highest quality oil that is easily obtained is called turbine oil. My Ace Hardware stocks it in a 6oz bottle with an oiling tube that pulls out.
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#12 Philip Kral

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Posted 25 August 2011 - 02:11 AM

Is it me, or has all the Bell and Howell Filmo repair men in the world dissapeared?

Just an observation after trying to find my old repair guy.

-Phil
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Glidecam

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FJS International, LLC

Wooden Camera

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Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Visual Products

Willys Widgets

Tai Audio

The Slider

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Ritter Battery

Paralinx LLC

Metropolis Post

CineTape

Aerial Filmworks

Rig Wheels Passport

Abel Cine