Here is a quick tip list on letters for the HELP! desk:
Please confine yourself to only one question per letter. Both postal letters and e-mails are fine, although we prefer e-mail as the most efficient form of communication. Send your e-mail queries to firstname.lastname@example.org with Help in the subject header and your return e-mail address at the end of your message. Although we make every effort, we cannot promise to answer every HELP! letter.
When sending a response or suggestion that refers to a published letter please include the month and page of the original question.
All postal letters to HELP! must be accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope to be considered for reply. We will respond to e-mail queries with an e-mail.
In the April 2005 issue on page 188, Bill Dixon requested information on the repair of an Argus C3 and others under the Argus name. I have checked with a local camera shop that still has in their employ some original Argus repairmen. Mr. Dixon might like to contact: Huron Camera Shop SVC Inc., 8060 Main St., Dexter, MI 48130; (734) 426-4654. They definitely repair C3s.
Donald G. Olsen
Ann Arbor, MI
In recent years we have had a number of inquiries from readers desiring to
have various older models of Argus cameras repaired, so are happy to learn of
another repair facility. It's understandable that some individuals familiar
with repairing Argus products would live in the Ann Arbor area, since that's
where this once popular
camera--that helped make reasonably priced 35mm cameras popular in the U.S.A.--was produced for decades from the 1930s until the '60s. I worked in the Argus factory Engineering Research and Development department myself for a few years starting in '57. Thanks for writing--we have forwarded your recommendation to
No Null On Color Analyzer
Q. I have been given a Beseler PM1A color analyzer that I cannot get to null out with or without a negative in the enlarger. The needle pegs to the left side and does not move when I open and close the lens. The only real movement that I get is when I turn the dials for white, magenta, yellow, or blue (with the pointer on each color) from 100 to 0, and that is to peg further to the left. It has been several years since I used an analyzer and thought that I would remember how to use it. Am I missing something or does the unit need repairing? Also, let me add that I read your magazine cover to cover every month. Thank you for your help.
A. I have only used analyzers a few times in many hundreds of hours logged in various darkrooms around the U.S.A. and overseas in the military, so to obtain some knowledgeable advice I forwarded your inquiry to Darryl C. Nicholas, one of our darkroom experts. Here is his sage comment: "About the Beseler PM1A color analyzer, it has failed electronically...and is no longer reparable...because parts are no longer available." Thanks for your kind comments. We do hope you will to continue to enjoy the contents of Shutterbug for years to come.
Lamp For Argus Projector
Q. A situation dictates I use an Argus slide projector that needs a new lamp. The make and number of the lamp is Sylvania CZA. So far I have not been able to find one. Do you know where I can purchase a replacement lamp?
A. I called a firm named Bulbman (800-648-1163; www.bulbman.com), which claims to have 8000 sizes of replacement lamps. They said although there are no Sylvania-brand lamps today, they do have a GE CZA lamp for your old Argus slide projector. Skimming through Porter's catalog for another product, I noticed they have CZA lamps listed for under $30. I'm sure other large mail-order dealers will also stock this lamp. You can contact them at Porter's Camera Store, PO Box 628, Cedar Falls, IA 50613; (800) 553-2001, (319) 268-0104; fax: (800) 221-5329, (319) 277-5254; www.porters.com.
Q. Is there a difference between a UV filter and a polarizing filter?
A. The UV filter will slightly improve color and black and white pictures made of distant subjects, as it will cut through the haze somewhat. It is most useful for aerial or high-altitude photography. There is no filter factor, thus it will not affect the exposure. Many people leave a UV filter on their lens all the time to protect the front lens element from dust and scratching. A polarizing filter, used correctly under specific situations, will darken the sky, making clouds more pronounced and accentuating some colors. It will also help reduce reflections in glass and on water. Once you place a polarizing filter over the camera lens, you must rotate the filter to observe the visual darkening effect in the viewfinder (when using an SLR). The polarizing filter does require increased exposure, typically 11/2-2 full f/stops more exposure, so it's advisable to bracket exposures when using this filter. The internal metering on some SLR cameras will properly meter the exposure to produce the correct exposure, but some camera meters are adversely affected, so check your camera instructions first. Hope this helps clarify the two types of filters for you.
Seeking Slide Mounts
Q. Do you have an address or e-mail address that I can use to get in contact with The Stock Solution (a slide mount maker that I used to get all my mounts from)?
A. You don't specify what type of slide mount you need--cardboard, plastic, or glass. I assume you are looking for 35mm mounts. I have not heard of The Stock Solution and I tried a web search and could not find them there either. There are several firms that offer various types of 35mm slide mounts: Light Impressions, PO Box 787, Brea, CA 92822, (800) 828-6216, (714) 441-4539, fax: (800) 828-5539, (714) 441-4564, www.lightimpressionsdirect.com; Visual Horizons, Store Smart Express, 180 Metro Park, Rochester, NY 14623, (800) 424-1011, (585) 424-5300, fax: (800) 424-5411, (585) 424-5313, www.StoreSmart.com; and Porter's Camera Store, PO Box 628, Cedar Falls, IA 50613, (800) 553-2001, (319) 268-0104, fax: (800) 221-5329, (319) 277-5254, www.porters.com. For instance, Porter's lists press and seal cardboard, heat-seal cardboard plastic and glass mounts. I'm sure one or more of these firms can provide you with the type of mounts you seek.