This post describes how I stripped down and cleaned up the Agfa Karat film advance/frame counter assembly, which is found under the top cover of the camera. It’s a pretty straight forward operation, but I think it’s always easier if you can see what to expect before you take it apart, so I’ve posted this to hopefully help someone else who may need to do the same operation in the future.
Agfa Karat film advance images
The Karat, at least the f/3.5 model I have, is quite easy to work on and is also pretty simple to get apart. The pictures above basically describe what to do, but I’ll highlight in the notes below any points which need to be made.
Removing the top cover is just a matter of unscrewing the two screws which hold it and the centre screw from the film advance – make sure you use the right size screwdriver for these or the heads can get chewed up. The top then lifts off, but you have to unscrew the top of the shutter release first.
I found a fair amount of gunk under the top cover on my camera and stripped all the components off to give them a clean in IPA. That seemed to work and everything went back together well, but initially when I put it all together I found a couple of problems.
First, the frame counter was too loose and although it would work it could also easily move about. I found I had to bend the small brass spring next the the lens release button in towards the middle of the camera to properly engage with the frame counter to stop this.
The other issue was that the film advance would lock after the shutter was fired. After I took the top off again I discovered that the spring which sits on the film advance shaft needs to mate with a cut out in the top cover. You can see in the pictures above where the spring needs to be positioned, and the cutout in the back of the top cover. Once these correctly lined up everything was fine.
With the frame advance mechanism cleaned up I then moved on the fixing the main problem area with the camera which was the focus mechanism.