Wisner Question:

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Here is a teaser, for some of us. I bought a Zone VI Classic 4x5 made by Wisner. That is what the brass plate states. The camera looks more like a Wisner based on hardware but has a black synthetic bellows. My questions: Any idea when the camera (series) was made? Where should I send it for repairs? Thanks, R.P.

-- Robert Patrick (Woodcamera@aol.com), September 07, 1998


Robert, Calumet Photographic (1-800-calumet) bought Zone VI several years ago. Zone VI is still very much in business. Call Calument, they'll give you Zone VI's address, direct tel.#, or tell you how to send your camera to them for repairs.

Take care, Sergio.

-- Sergio Ortega (s.ortega@worldnet.att.net), September 07, 1998.

Back some time in the late 1980's, Ron Wisner and Fred Picker of Zone VI got together and decided to collaborate on a wooden field camera offered for sale by Zone VI. Unfortunately, it was a short lived affair where they both ended up in heated competition selling their own named wooden field cameras. I suspect the lawyers got into it because I read an article written on Ron Wisner recently where he stated that he got a "legal" issue behind him. I suspect this is what he was talking about.

Getting it repaired would depend upon the following. If you were the original owner, you would have a warranty on record from the seller independent of the manufacturer. Zone VI is required to repair the camera for you should this repair fall into the criteria of "warranty" work. At the time Zone VI offered these for sale, the term warranty meant anything preventing the camera from functioning, including, but not limited to being run over by a truck.

If you are not the original owner, the issue of warranty goes out the window. Under these conditions, I would contact Ron Wisner and discuss the repair directly with him since you will be footing the bill. My concern would be establishing how long the repair will take. I would not like to have my camera out of commission for undetermined amounts of time.

The only exception to this condition would be if the bellows were part of the problem. Since Wisner has differentiated their workmanship from Zone VI by using leather bellows, I would talk to Zone VI on this issue.

It sounds from your write up that you are not the original owner. Did you buy it from the original owner ? If so have him make the inquiry. May save you some money. Let us know how things work out.

-- Michael Kadillak (kadillak@rmi.net), September 07, 1998.

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