The light meter does not come on. Red test button lights green test light and the battery measures 6.3 volts. Cleaned contacts between body and view finder. This view finder does not have a battery like some models. Camera has been sitting a long time.
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This button you speak of is an alternate way of depressing the shutter it is also a way in which you can use a shutter release cord to take pictures. the button itself is not meant to come out of the camera. Once you load your film or 2 empty film spools (to test to see if the camera is working properly) into the camera and wind the film crank then you will be able to depress that button and fire the shutter.
From the manual:
"If the error display is not canceled when the shutter release button is pressed again, insert the Dark slide, half-press the shutter release button while pressing the roll film holder's manual film advance button to wind up the film, then contact your nearest Mamiya agent or service center."
If you need a manual, you can download one from http://butkus.org/chinon/mamiya/mamiya_645af/mamiya_645af.htm
You might want to check and make sure the battery is still good. If you purchased the camera used and didn't change the battery then this might be the case.
But in the mean time this is what you need to do: 1st-make sure that the shutter speed dial is set to any shutter speed other than the red circle w/red ring. If your camera is set to that it will drain your battery when not in use since it is designed to be an automatic setting. I set mine to 1/125th to do this push in the circular dial on the side and at the same time turn the knob.
2nd- locate the 2 levers on the opposite side of the shutter speed dial. Once you found them then position the back lever all the way forward towards the setting for "MULTI" and position the lever towards the front straight up.
3rd- then wind the film crank till it won't wind anymore and depress the shutter, if it is wound and the shutter release is still stuck then skip to the fourth step, if something happened and you heard a click then still proceed to the next step because no the shutter release will be temporarily stuck.
4th-Once both of these levers are in this position there should be a red
button just behind the shutter release button on the top right side of
the camera.... drum roll please...."Push the red button" what you
should hear is a rather loud click, this click is the mirror releasing allowing you to: 1 wind the film crank and take another picture and 2 this also now allows you to see through the lens again (assuming that you have a lens on the camera).
In Conclusion: without a battery that is fully functional in the camera this is how the camera will operate once you get a battery for your camera then reposition the levers on the side of the camera opposite of what I suggested (this will be the normal operating mode for the camera with a battery) then when you wind the film crank and depress the shutter everything will function normally.
Sounds like either a battery issue, or an issue with electronics. I'd first try checking/cleaning any electronic contacts between the body and the back. If that doesn't help, if you have access to another back try that to see if the issue is in the back or in the body (or both?). If that doesn't narrow it down, send the whole kit in to a service center or take it in to a local tech if you have one.
Problem solved- The camera does not operate correctly unless the battery is in good condition, in place, and all the contacts are clean. In the RZ76 as opposed to the old RB models the components "talk" to each other: via electronic circuits. The back "tells" the camera bod if the dark slide ins in or out and whether the film is loaded or at the end of the roll. If the batter voltage is too low or the contacts are no clean and making full contact the body has no way of knowing the condition of the film backs and the interlocking mechanisms fail to work.
What I did was firstly test the battery under load and discovered that the cell was a bit low. It was a fresh battery but it is a good idea to turn the camera off after shooting in case the is a slight current draw when the camera is idle (?) . I replaced the battery and traced the voltages through the body to see if it was getting to some of the contacts such as the onces on the meter prism which has LEDs to be lighted. I also used an ohm meter to check out continuity- everything seemed to be in order. I then cleaned all the contacts including the battery terminals withl alcohol and made sure everything was dry and clean.
Now- everything works. The camera was turned off overnight and the battery has lost no voltage when tested under load..
This camera is equipped with RB lenses which have no electrical contacts and therefore the camera and lenses can't "communicate" so the meter will not work with theses older lenses.