Restoring the 1945 Anniversary

Leather replacement and cleaning. 


For full technical details such as focal plane shutter repair, please follow this link.


This is how the Speed Anniversary arrived, purchased from a website visitor. 

In the middle of a not yet finished restoring project.

The former owner had already removed the leather on the front, but the glue was apparently very resistant probably the reason why he stopped the restoration. It took me some hours of thorough cleaning to get the old glue off. However, the result was a clean drop bed ready for the new covering.


The back was finished with some leatherette, which I removed and then cleaned the back from the rest of old glue.

It is not too hard to make the new leather fitting to the back. Finishing touch is the piping on the leather. Now it's time to concentrate on the cosmetics of the inner of the camera. Thorough cleaning and using some drops of oil to give it it's factory new look back again.


This is the hardest part of the restoration. At least for me it is, as I'm not that handy in doing the cutting work and the precise fitting of the leather near the corners. I learned that it would be better to make a model out of paper first,  rather than experimenting with the precious leather...


However it sure looks pretty enough now.


Every single part of the camera is removed now for thorough cleaning. On the right, the black crackle painting of the focal plane shutter cover. However, for focal plane shutter repair, please follow this link: Focal Plane shutter repair.

To add some more tension on the focal plane shutter you may remove the 4 screws of the tension setting plate and rotate the plate counter clockwise without disengaging the pinion and indicator gear. Reassemble the 4 screws when tension is satisfactory. 

For more info about the tension setting.


Repainting the lens board by more than 5 times spraying with glossy black paint, brings back the neat finishing touch.


Cleaned from dirt and dust that came together in more than 60 years of heavy duty in the studio or in the street, the camera shows up again.  And what is more important the camera can be used again for fine photographing. 

More about restoring the Anniversary only for skilled repairers



Kalart Synchrostob.

The Anniversary and the Flash.

Who else than the creative inventor Morris Schwarz himself, founder of the Kalart company together with William Castadello was able to develop a good working synchronizing flash release device. To synchronise the shutter with the flash, Schwarz designed the Synchrostrob.. By pushing the release button on the Synchrostrob, first the flash would go off just before the shutter would open some 20 milliseconds behind. The invention was patented in 1943. The installation looks quite simple. The adjustment to synchronize however, is quite difficult.


A build in flywheel and a gear, synchronizes the shutter with the time of ignition of the bulb.



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