I took my 1D over to the repairers on Monday morning, expecting that I would have to leave it and I'd be without the camera for a few days at least. I was having a problem with the flash working correctly on the camera, but I knew the flashgun itself was OK. I have 2 Speedlites and the problem occurred with both. It seemed to be intermittant but the camera would suddenly set itself to f22, I'd jiggle it a bit and it would revert to the correct setting, then it would go back to f22 again, and so it went on. Essentially I was fighting a losing battle with it so it had to be sorted.

Terry, who owns Northern Photo Electronics, and whom I've always taken camera problems to, was scratching his head to work out what was causing the problem. The hot shoe was not loose and the flash itself seemed Ok. It sat on the counter as he pondered, then suddenly a lightbulb lit over his head Thats it! I know what it is. He was positive he knew the problem.

Pointing at the hotshoe, he said "Look at that, thats the problem" Well I could barely see anything wrong, but he dashed off to his workshop and came back with a cotton bud soaked in alcohol. There was dirt on one of the terminals, which he proceeded to clean off. The flash went back on and hey presto, it all seems to work OK.

To say I was relieved is a bit of an understatement, and the fact he wouldn't take anything for his time and trouble was even better.

I once derided an Olympus user who was banging on about loosing his plastic blank that slots into the Oly hotshoe. I'm thinking now that perhaps they are not such a bad thing if they keep your terminals dirt free