I removed my DP1m hotmirror, step by step with photos

Started Dec 27, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Nicholas Johnson
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I removed my DP1m hotmirror, step by step with photos
Dec 27, 2013

Do not try this. I am literally an engineering school dropout with no idea what I'm doing. I am not responsible for whatever warranty voiding, $1000 camera destroying antics you perform. That being said I found this extremely easy.

1) Its a good idea to work in a clean space. I used a small toolkit with I think a #000 phillips and occasionally a very small flathead screwdriver to pry or mess with tiny connectors. I also used small bowls to hold my screws so I could isolate them from other steps. When possible I have shown the screws that go to that step in case they get mixed.

2) Do not force anything. Everything comes apart with virtually no force. If you have to force it you're doing it wrong. I missed the flash hot shoe screw for a day until Laurence Matson explained where it was.  Thank you Laurence. Some connectors are very difficult to reattach.  Relax. Give it time.

3) Remove all the screws from the rear of the body plus the screws around the tripod mount (all four, with two being on the front half of the bottom of the body).  There are screws hidden under the flash hot shoe. You have to remove the metal cover with a small flat-headed screwdriver and pry in the circular hole just in front of the main flash contact.  Watch the video.  It gets good about one minute in. (I removed three flash screws when I think I only needed to remove two)

4) There will be a ribbon cable holding the back to the main body. Flip up the brown connector with your finger nail and the ribbon should gently pull out. Gently. You can easily access it if you open the camera like a book, with the hinge/spine on the right, where the battery cover is. The back is free and can be set aside.

5) Under and to the left of the hot shoe there is another ribbon cable connected. Release this one, I suggest, with a small flat-headed screwdriver. First you see it closed. Second image is open. Gently push one side open, as in slide it away from the closed position. Not too much. Then the other side.  Alternate so as not to put too much force on either side. Half a millimeter at a time it will come off.

6) That big cable you just unhooked is still glued to the back of the sensor brick. If I had known ahead of time I would have used a sharpie and made a mark to know where the cable goes left to right, because I didn't know where the slack needed to be upon reassembly.  Anyway, the ribbon can be pulled off gently.  I would try not to bend it.

7) Remove the five screws from the back of the sensor package. Shiny to the right, black to the left. Notice the bottom right has only one screw.

8) See those shims? Don't mess with them.  Also don't try to use a can of air to clean your lens.  It will make it snow shims on your desk.

9) Back to the sensor, you see the three screws holding the greenish glass filter? Remove the screws and the filter. Notice there is a notched area on one corner. It seems the right way to lift the glass out. Again with the small screwdriver. Best I can tell there is no reason that plastic frame has to be there so I bagged that up with the screws and kept it.  No damage done.

10) Reverse the disassembly.  Notice I have before and after pics for the ribbon connectors. My big question was how far to push in the ribbon before I could close the connector on it and I hope the images help.

Most instructions I see on the regular DP1 says to break a piece of glass. I removed the holder here and haven't found any problems in terms of focus or anything. I also had one shim not get replaced when it flew out, but again everything seems to work fine.  I might do some testing later to see if I need to break the glass and replace the shim.

Ask away and I hope this helps people out. Also, I got my DP1m from Sigma as a refurbished unit knowing I would void any warranty anyway and they shipped the next day and it was only $10 for 2 day shipping.  For someone in the US there are few options before full MSRP and this was faster than buying an Asian import.

Sigma DP1 Merrill
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