Repairing a Broken Meter Link Chain in Classic Cameras

Repairing a Broken Meter Link Chain in Classic Cameras

Classic cameras, especially those with mechanical metering systems, can sometimes develop issues with their meter link chains. These chains are crucial for transmitting information from the camera’s light meter to the shutter mechanism, ensuring accurate exposures. If the chain breaks or becomes missing, your camera’s light meter will not function correctly, leading to inaccurate exposures.

This tutorial will guide you through the process of repairing a broken or missing meter link chain in classic cameras like the Mamiya DTL and Pentax 6×7. We’ll use a simple and readily available household item to replace the damaged chain.

Identifying the Problem

The first step is to identify the issue. If your camera’s light meter is not functioning properly, the meter link chain might be the culprit. Here are some signs to look for:

  • The needle on the light meter is stuck or not moving at all.
  • The shutter speed or aperture settings are not being adjusted correctly based on the light meter reading.
  • You hear a rattling noise when you move the camera.

If you suspect a problem with the meter link chain, carefully inspect the chain itself. Look for broken links, missing links, or any signs of wear and tear.

Materials Needed

  • A small piece of thin chain (e.g., from a necklace or bracelet)
  • Small pliers
  • A small screwdriver
  • A magnifying glass (optional)

Repair Process

  1. Disassemble the Camera: Carefully disassemble the camera to access the meter link chain mechanism. Refer to your camera’s manual for specific instructions.
  2. Remove the Broken Chain: Once you’ve accessed the chain, remove the broken or missing section. You can use small pliers to carefully remove the links.
  3. Cut and Attach the Replacement Chain: Cut a piece of the replacement chain that is the same length as the missing section. Use the pliers to carefully attach the new chain to the existing chain. Make sure the links are properly connected and secure.
  4. Reassemble the Camera: Carefully reassemble the camera, ensuring that all parts are properly aligned.
  5. Test the Meter: Once the camera is reassembled, test the light meter to ensure it is functioning correctly.

Important Considerations

  • Camera Model: This repair method might not be suitable for all camera models. Always refer to your camera’s manual for specific instructions and precautions.
  • Precision: This repair requires precision and patience. Take your time and work carefully to avoid damaging any parts.
  • Professional Help: If you’re not comfortable with this repair, it’s best to seek professional help from a qualified camera repair technician.


Repairing a broken meter link chain can be a straightforward process. With the right tools and careful attention, you can restore your classic camera’s light meter functionality. Remember to work carefully and consult your camera’s manual for specific instructions. If you’re unsure about any aspect of the repair, it’s always best to seek professional help.