Question about Nikon D50 Digital Camera

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D50 onboard flash deploys but won't fire

I recently bought a used D50 on ebay and have the flash won't fire problem. Wonderful private seller conveniently neglected to mention the flash didn't work and I didn't do sufficient homework to ask about it before purchase, oh well...
Based on suggestion from D70 form, I removed the outer shroud of the flash unit. There are 2 VERY small leaf switches. The upper one tells the cameras brain if the flash is up or not. The lower one powers the flash strobe and will give you a decent shock if you touch it :-0. There is also a small plastic post that sticks out along the axis but eccentric to the pop-up hinge. It looks like the upper switch is supposed to bear on this post which would push the switch leaf out of contact when the flash is down and allow the leaf to make contact when the flash is up.
It now looks like the plastic post is too short to bear on the upper switch leaf. Either the post has broken off, which is very possible since it is only about .75 mm in diameter. Or the metal switch assembly has shifted position away from the post. In either case, the upper switch leaf never makes contact, so the camera always thinks the flash is down. That is why you hear the click of the pop-up latch release every time you depress the shutter release in low light conditions even though the flash is always up. It is also why the flash won't fire, because it thnks the flash is still down.
I'm told sending the camera back to Nikon for repair is about $130, which is pretty close to the price of a decent external flash. So, unless somebody has some good advice on how to restore the fnction of the internal flash position switch, I expect I'm just going to pick up a mid-priced external flash.
Any additional info or opinions would be of great interest...

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  • lcjhnsn Oct 16, 2009

    Well, I gave it a try, following these instructions precisely. But it did not appear that the "pivot" wanted to move back out to it's functional position. I think the small plastic stud that should be engaging the contact leaf is actually broken off as opposed to just being out of position.

    In any case, I've procured an external flash, so the use of the onboard flash is kind of pointless now.

    Thank you for the advice!

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Your flash head pivot has come unclipped and has slid back into its hole too far. The problem can be repaired by using an L-shaped paperclip to pull the flash pivot back out to its proper position. First, remove the battery from the camera and bend a 1/8" section of the paperclip to make an L on the end and gently insert it into the hole and pull outward while moving the flash head up and down. It should pop back out and the pin will then be long enough to make the flash switch work. Be very careful you do not push the paperclip too far inside the camera so you don't damage anything inside the top.

If you do not feel comfortable doing this, we can do this repair for $68.50. We do quite a few D series Nikons with this same problem.

Bob
www.CameraRepairs.com

Posted on Sep 21, 2009

  • Jeffrey Simmons
    Jeffrey Simmons Jun 10, 2017

    What hole do you insert the paperclip into?

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