dropped D40 is broken... best course of action?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by pna, Sep 25, 2007.

  1. pna macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 27, 2005
    #1
    hey everyone,

    I convinced my girlfriend to take my D40 to the mountains with her this weekend, in the hopes of revitalizing her interest in photography. It did, and she took some amazing shots, but then fell in a tricky section of trail and dropped it. Now the shutter will engage, but I get an error on the LCD that says I need to re-engage the shutter release to get it to actually disengage the shutter mechanism. Needless to say it's not taking good pictures at this point...

    My question to all of you is the best way to go about getting it fixed. I'm sure this isn't covered under warranty, and while it might be covered under my renter's insurance, is probably not worth claiming. There's only one 'authorized' nikon service center in my area (seattle) , which isn't terribly close. Have any of you had experience getting cameras repaired through Nikon non-warranty service, or have any idea of how much repairs tend to cost? Or, even better, do any of you have any idea of what the problem might be, or how to try and troubleshoot or fix it myself?

    Thanks for any input at all, here. I'd hate to have to write it off as broken, or not worth the cost of fixing -- we've barely gotten a chance to use it.
     
  2. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2006
    Location:
    In my imagination
    #2
    I hear that Nikon's service support isn't all that great but that sounds like a problem I would send to Nikon or any Nikon Service Repair Center or whatever. I wouldn't try fixing it myself at all, that would just make things worse. As for cost, it may cost you about half the cost of the camera. If it costs more than half the cost of the camera then you'd be better off getting another D40.

    p.s. Don't go to Ritz Camera either... they really suck at repairing cameras.
     
  3. sblasl macrumors 6502a

    sblasl

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2004
    Location:
    Heber Springs, AR
    #3
    "dropped D40 is broken... best course of action?"

    D300?;)
     
  4. pna thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 27, 2005
    #4

    hey -- this is great advice. You got me to check on prices, and man have they come down! To just under two grand... I trust that, at that price, the d300 can survive a fall onto glacier-polished granite?

    I actually just spoke with some people at the local service center. They sound great, and it turns out they have a great reputation locally for dealing with all camera repairs well, and at a reasonable price. The best part is the free estimate, and the 1 day turnaround time for it.
     
  5. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2003
    Location:
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    #5
    Now if your girlfriend would've just held off on dropping it until November, then this might've worked...
     
  6. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #6
    Nikon's two major repair centers appear to be in California and New Jersey. I hear mixed results from the California one, and really good stuff about NJ. You can mail it to any center though- turn-around will be based on workload.

    As you've already learned, they'll tell you what it'll cost ahead of time. If you paid with a CC, you might also check your cardholder agreement, often they'll cover damages.
     
  7. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #7
    The Nikon service center is very close to where I work. They are great if you walk in and will some times do a while you wait repair if it is simple.

    There are also many small independent shops. If you have any of these locally talk to them. They can many times actually repair a part whereas if you sent it to Nikon they would replace an entire subassembly and charge a lot more.
     
  8. pna thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 27, 2005
    #8
    Just to follow up on this, I got an estimate of $350 or so to fix it from the local 'photo-tronics' shop, which seems to be well-regarded in the area. I think this is their blanket cost estimate for when they think there may really need to be some replaced parts in there, but they do it without actually opening up the case of the camera to look. I don't fault them for having that as a practical policy. Their estimate was pretty high compared to the cost of a new d40, so I sent it in to Nikon. They ended up repairing it for about $200. Turnaround time was about two weeks, only complicated by the fact that their service web interface is horrid. Their phone service was solid, with short wait times.

    I had previously assumed that Nikon would be as, or more, expensive for repairs than a local shop, but in this case it turned out not to be the case. May this camera take many, many more pictures before being dropped again...

    Thanks for all the advice.
     
  9. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2003
    Location:
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    #9
    That's great - glad it worked out! $200 doesn't sound too bad at all.
     
  10. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #10
    I've had good luck with both both nikon and canon repair centers. Both are local so I'm a walk in customer. The Nikon place once did a small on the spot repair for free but that was in the days of all metal mechanical cameras

    Now days the way they "repair" camera is to swap out entire assemblies like the mirror box or shutter. The the cost will be whatever one of those costs plus some labor hours.
     

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