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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Newton ,Massachusetts
    Posts
    500

    Battery for Gossen Super Pilot

    I want to start using my 40 year old Gossen Super Pilot light meter again. The battery was dead, PX-13. I tried searching for a new battery, but have been unsuccessful. I tried contacting Gossen through their web sit, but no reply. The other day, I went to the local camera store. The clerk sold me a Varta V625U, 1.5 V. He said it was equivalent.

    The meter is not giving proper readings. My thought is that either the battery is not the right one, or that the old light meter has given up.

    Any thoughts on whether this is the right battery, or what ever else my be wrong?

    Thank you.
    Last edited by JLV; 12-16-2009 at 05:05 PM.
    Panasonic FZ20, Kodak DC4800, Canon SD850 for when I don't want to carry a camera
    http://JLVACCARO.4T.COM

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Brookfield, MA
    Posts
    1,140
    I've got the same meter and I've got a PX625A (alkaline) cell in it. Somewhere years ago I had found information that it was a suitable substitute for the original batteries which were mercury based. Of course the info I found may have been bogus.
    I just ran a quick check against a Sekonic L358, both in incident reading mode and the Gossen wasn't too far off to what the Sekonic was reading. This was under some weak CFL bulbs. I'll try a comparisons tomorrow in better light. Where does the needle indicate when you depress the "Battery Contr" button on the back of the meter? My needle lands in the silver square about 2/3rds upscale.
    Have you tried some comparisons against a DSLR camera meter and the Gossen in reflected mode?
    I'll give this a try tomorrow in daylight and see what happens. I'm getting back into medium format and I was planning on using the Gossen, so I want to check it's accuracy.
    Mark........

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Newton ,Massachusetts
    Posts
    500
    Mark, my needle also lands just above the square mark.

    Thank you for the other information, too.
    Panasonic FZ20, Kodak DC4800, Canon SD850 for when I don't want to carry a camera
    http://JLVACCARO.4T.COM

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Newton ,Massachusetts
    Posts
    500
    Based on the info you supplied, Mark, I increased my search. I found that PX-13 was 1.35 V. Where the 265 is 1.5V. One site recommended using Zink air battery as they have a slightly lower voltage.

    I did test the light meter with a camera's light meter. I used the studio where I could better control the light. With dim light the readings were close. With the floods, the Gossen was way higher.

    The resting point of the needle, when the floods were on, were above the red block on the left of the meter. The reading was above the red on the left of the meter.

    What are you experiencing?
    Panasonic FZ20, Kodak DC4800, Canon SD850 for when I don't want to carry a camera
    http://JLVACCARO.4T.COM

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Brookfield, MA
    Posts
    1,140
    I just did a comparison outdoors with the Gossen and Sekonic. The Gossen read about 2 stops higher than the Sekonic. Guess I may give the zinc air batteries a try. I had used those in an old Pentax Spotmatic a good number of years ago to replace a mercury style battery. Only downside was they didn't seem to last very long.

    Came across this and it has some alternative options....
    http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...threadid=81899
    Mark........

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Newton ,Massachusetts
    Posts
    500
    Thanks again, Mark. Interesting information. I don't think I will try to make an adapter. If I come across anything else I will post it. Hope you will do the same.
    Panasonic FZ20, Kodak DC4800, Canon SD850 for when I don't want to carry a camera
    http://JLVACCARO.4T.COM

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Brookfield, MA
    Posts
    1,140

    Digging up an old thread.....

    JLV you still hanging around here???
    Don't know if you're interested in a meter mod or not....

    Not having much luck locating a schematic, I ended up taking it apart and sketched up what I believe to be a correct representation. Some of the wiring that was on the backside of the PC board I took an educated guess of its connections. As drawn it seems to make sense.

    To get the back off there are 4 screws beneath some sort of hardened filler that needs to be dug out.

    To facilitate recalibration to a 625 Silver Oxide battery I drilled 3 small holes in the backside of the meter case just large enough to insert a jewelers screwdriver through to make the adjustments. I tried adjustment with the case back off, but light leakage and trying to hold the battery in place made it too difficult. Holes are covered with tape afterwards.

    With a fresh battery and a Sekonic L-358 as a side by side reference for measuring, I first adjusted R2, which I believe to be the coarse adjustment. This was followed by tweaking R3 to match the setting on the Sekonic. Lastly R1 which is the battery check adjustment was set to the BC square on the meter dial. R1, R2, & R3 are arbitrary numbers I assigned to the potentiometers. They may be different on a real Gossen schematic.

    I have since made some comparisons with other meters at varying levels of light both incident and reflected. The Gossen matched up very close. Also some test shots with a Canon 20D. The Gossen matched right up to the metering of the 20D in reflected measurements.

    The CdS cell is still slow as molasses, but at least the meter seems accurate with a readily obtainable battery. If this post helps anyone out there with one of these meters, I gladly email you my address where to send donations...Only joking!!! Enjoy....

    Any thoughts, corrections, or comments welcomed.
    Attached Images Attached Images   
    Last edited by Mark_48; 02-10-2010 at 12:13 PM.
    Mark........

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Newton ,Massachusetts
    Posts
    500
    Again, thank you Mark, for the information. At this time I will probably not try it, but maybe later. There is not much to loose as the meter is not much good the way it is.
    Panasonic FZ20, Kodak DC4800, Canon SD850 for when I don't want to carry a camera
    http://JLVACCARO.4T.COM

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