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50mm CFi Disintigration of Flash sync cover

The expectation of quality from Ziess is quickly fading. Having had the above for some years but in pristine condition due to little use in the studio, we recently fitted the sync cord to it.

When the sync cord was pulled off it ripped off the plastic cap fitting. EeeK! why on earth have they made this out of plastic, it was only held on by a basic plastic fit which broke off.

My brother in law produces plastic items like this so, the production costs run into pence when thousands are produced. When we phoned Hasselblad Uk for the cost of renewal we were quoted £37.50 (Approx) plus VAT ($75?). Good grief! it should be replaced free of charge, it is clearly a design fault. Needless to say, we will try super glue first and then this
purchase last. We may even consider doing our own plastic cover that is not spring loaded.

The Ziess casing quality on these lenses is awful and would not recommend purchase of their newer lenses. I'll start looking for the all metal old ones.

You are right that this plastic cover is a flimsy little thing not allways suited to do its job correctly.

For this and many other parts Hasselblad charges up to ten times, sometimes even more than that, their purchasing price.

Please do not blame the Zeiss company for that as they are not the cause.BTW Zeiss is correct not Ziess.

A little while ago I bought six complete lens barrels on Ebay without glass parts. From 60mm CF to 350 FE
For about 35 GBP each they will supply many usefull parts like shutters, helicoids,diaphragms and flash connectors.
In parts they are worth a fortune according to Hasselblad prices.

These lenses were probably dismantled as complete new lenses all obsolete models of course.

I agree that the newer lenses seem very fragile compared to the old versions which is why I am sticking to old chrome T*`s.
I`ve read too many stories about newer versions having problems.
I`ve also noticed newer versions going for a lot less money recently particularly CB lenses, I`ve seen cases where plain ol` tape has removed numbers letters etc from newer version barrels.
I have the similar issues with newer bodies, while they are lighter, I`m not so sure this is a great thing, they feel less durable and somehow easier to drop, especially with the older lenses mounted on them.
Just my opinion of course.
Hmmm, I'll have to disagree on this one.

I've been shooting with Hasselblad lenses for decades, including with many professionals I've hired over the years. The previous lens sync ports were notorious for going bad or for making bad connections ... mostly from "pulling" on them, or yanking them out. I've experienced the same issue with the non-locking Mamiya RZ lens sync port, and misfires are not funny when using it to sync a digital back. Same with older Hassey lenses I've used when hooked up to a 96C back ... after I ugraded to CFi and CFE, I never had the problem after that.

The new ones were designed to hold the cord in place, but if you pull them out without pressing the release they can eventually break. If they didn't break when the sync cord was locked in and someone tried to mindlessly yank it out, I wonder what would happen?

Frankly I wish my RZ lenses had the locking type like the Hassey lenses.

Other improvements in the modern lenses make them more preferable for me.
I have to say that this is the very first time that I have ever heard criticisms of the CFE/CFi lenses' quality - except for comments about the obviously pathetic screen printed numbers on the barrels (why not etched and filled in with paint I'll never know).

However, while I only have the one current version lens - an 80mm CFE - having read this thread, like Marc I feel I should defend that sync chord locking device. Of course since I am not a pro shooter, I don't put my gear under much stress, but when I connect up a flash the device seems strong enough. But it's obvious that if I simply tug the chord free I will break that spring lock!

But I am surprised that some more general quality issues have been made because my CFE lens seem to be of similar construction quality to all my CF lenses. Maybe I'm lucky that I have stuck with CF versions when I shop (the 80mm CFE was "thrown" in when I bought a nice body) - had to really as they were what I could afford!
But it's obvious that if I simply tug the chord free I will break that spring lock!

Well it should not be, I have been using Hasselblad lenses for 31years, most of these years in a professional capacity before moving onto Sinar 5 x 4. This is the first time we have had to use the 50mm in the studio (due to CFV digital back for tests) and this is the first time that this has happened! This is a brand new lens that has had little use for the reasons above.

We never had a problem with the flash sync coming away from the lens, either in studio or with portable flash units. We either pressed the flash chord head with slight pressure with pliers or with portable hand held on location, always taped the conection secure.

A cable pulling away from such a sync connection should not allow for the lens to be damaged in such a way, it is bad design or inappropriate material that is used. Fortunately we can either super glue this back on or just leave it off.

It is not just the spring on this, if there was no spring on this the plastic cover, it is such a close fit to the connection head, it would be pulled off anyway if the cable is accidently pulled.
There you have it, isn't this forum great .... ahh, the sacrifices we make for one another : -)

All kidding aside, Carl has a point. A heavily trafficked device such as a sync port should be built for business. I had the stop-down lever go on my 120CF (which Hasselblad replaced for free even though it was well past warranty). It was plastic also. This lens was my most used studio lens ... and before digital backs to check focus on a computer screen, I used the stop down to check it for most every set up. I also stopped down while shooting. I now have a 120CFi.
Interesting point about the CF lens stop down lever/button - I use the stop down for nearly every shot I take and I always assumed it must be a metal lever under the plastic button. It's a bit sad to learn that it is just plastic.

Sure, such products like Hasselblad gear should definitely be built for the toughest commercial use (within reason of course) - since most of their customers are commercial users.

Well anyway, if you really want to get depressed about cheap build have a look at the average 35mm SLR/DSLR consumer lens made these days - if the awful thin plastic barrels don't depress you, have a look at the plastic lens mounts!
Don't get depressed to quickly Simon, the cap was plastic, but the rest wasn't if I recall correctly. It just came apart and and was done for.

I had bought the first 120/4 Macro used ... and one can get a lens that had been used in a production catalog studio doing 300 shots a day for years on end. You take your chances. Now if I buy used I try to get a first user, weekend duffer's lens ... preferably a Dentist's : -)
The best used Hasselblad gear I bought years ago from a company that decided they could do their own publicity shots.
After a few fruitless attempts to take these shots this Hasselblad kit was stored not to be used untill I bought it many years later.
All "C" lenses 40, 100, 120, 150 and 250.
The 40 mm is still unused as I already had a 40 CF at the time.
look at the average 35mm SLR/DSLR consumer lens made these days - if the awful thin plastic barrels don't depress.>


Have you also noticed how sloppy the lens barrels are on some of the zoom lenses, they almost rattle.


Thanks Marc. Yes this is how I have sourced my CF lens collection. The latest (CF 60mm) was claimed to be unused, which turned out to be true as a 5x loupe failed to find any trace of finger prints! The digi-revolution has had great benefits for keen amateurs looking to build up a system.

Gilbert, I'm in 100% agreement. A buddy joined me on a shoot on Saturday with his Canon DSLR gear. His zoom lens was IMHO a disgrace - so cheaply made and he never ever gets a pin sharp image from it. He was shocked when he saw my EF 24-70mm f2.8 L lens, having no idea that there could be such a difference in build quality. That night when he downloaded his digi-images he needed resuscitation when he saw how sharp they were. I won't show him the Hassy/Zeiss lenses or images as he may not recover from the heart attack!
I won't show him the Hassy/Zeiss lenses or images as he may not recover from the heart attack!>


Yes, but you may save his eyesight!

Glad to hear you are out and about, shooting!