Replacement leatherette for cameras. : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Hi. I wonder if anyone knows of a source for replacement leatherette for my Linhof Technica which is in need of cosmetic overhaul. The original leatherette is tan so preferably I'd be looking for something in brownish tones. Thanks.

-- S.Stefan Jonsson (, January 02, 1998


Replacement Leatherette

You might try an upholstery shop or a cloth store for the thin vinyl material that would match the color you desire. Unfortunately, after I spoke to Linhoff on another matter recently, I was told that the cutting and fitting of these components will take a certain amount of time and patience but that it has been done successfully. Removing the glue from the camera that will remain from the original covering will probably take some of the fluid that you can buy from K Mart that dissolves glue for removing price tags. My Linhoff will eventually require the same overhaul. Let me know how it works out.

-- Michael Kadillak (, January 06, 1998.

International Micro Tools in Vacaville California has 9" x 11" leatherette for $10 per sheet. I don't know if they have "Linhof Grey" though. Check out their website at

-- Ted Brownlee (, January 27, 1998.

Maybe you could consult someone from arts and crafts, a person who makes billfolds and belts etc. The vinyl leatherettes of my Toyo Field (or the glue) could not take the freezing climate of finland and just peeled off, leaving a sticky residue. I took the camera to a camera repair shop along with the leatherettes and asked them to reglue the parts. They were ready to do it but for a price which was next to astronomical. Then, a friend of mine suggested replacing the vinyl with something more real and natural. Now my Toyo has catfish skin finish. Yes, catfish! It took only two days for the billfold maker to do the job, the cost was well worth it, the camera has very appealing touch and it looks too good to be sold, ever.


-- Timo Ripatti (, March 04, 1998.

I bought the leatherette from Micro-Tools mentioned above (good service, BTW), and releathered my cosmetically-chalenged Technika IV. It turns out it is relatively easy to do yourself. All you need is sharp Exacto knife, cutting mat, metal ruler, and scissors.

First remove external parts like accessory holder on top, grip, etc. Then tear all old leather off and scrape off old glue and remains of the leather. In several places on the body, the holes in the metal frame are covered with thin steel foil. You should (carefully) remove them too (noting which piece goes where). Scrape everything clean. Do not worry about scratching the body - it is steel and really hard. If you have corrosion, sand it clean to bare metal. At this point, you can polish metal parts if you want - it will make the camera look even better. Clean everything with cloth moistened with isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol).

Now glue the steel foil patches over holes - use superglue for that. It binds metal to metal really well, and is easy to use. Now comes the tricky part - you have to cut out leatherette panels. There are more than twenty panels on the body alone (not mentioning the front standard), so it make take a while. Do it one at a time, and check that it fits exactly into intended place. You need more than one 8x10 sheet to cover the whole body. Just buy 8x20 sheet, and you will have some left over.

After the leatherette is in place, assemble external parts your removed. Now your Technika looks new!

-- Andrei Frolov (, January 28, 1999.

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