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10-29-2007, 04:17 PM   #1
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Bit of fungus in great lens: NOT to buy?

Hey, I found a great lens offered on Ebay. Without the fungus it would have been a bestseller, prize could easily jump above 1k$. But,... the seller has declared there is ("a little bit") fungus on the inside of the lens. And now? Is the thing worthless? Or can it be repaired?

10-29-2007, 06:51 PM   #2
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good question. I dont know if im correct, but i've always heard that if a lens is yellowed or fungus, might as well trash it. Anyone else have an opinion?
10-29-2007, 07:15 PM   #3
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define little bit? it can be repaired and I have an old manual lens damaged slightly at the vary edge of the glass which has no visible effect on image quality..
10-29-2007, 08:27 PM   #4
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Problem with fungus is without some corrective action it will spread. The other issue is there's no way to tell if it's on the metal inside the lens until you have it opened up. I bought a very good lens that was reported as similar. Small fungus in one spot. It was bigger than I thought and so after the shop opened the unit they declared that it would be $300 to totally clean it because the lens had fungus on the inside of the barrel that was widespread. So it's tough to tell. Could be a winner or an expensive lesson.

10-29-2007, 08:56 PM   #5
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I'm pretty sure I saw that same listing although I can't remember the exact lens right now. Anyway I did some searching and found this link for what it's worth. Pretty interesting read, nonetheless.
Fungus and Camera Lenses
10-29-2007, 09:04 PM   #6
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I guess the thing to consider is its final price after the ebay purchase price, shipping, and cleaning if necessary and whether the total cost would be well under its value in good condition.

If the lens is indeed worth nearly 1K, it might just be worth talking to a repair shop ahead of time and get a guestimate, worse case scenario.
10-30-2007, 05:24 AM   #7
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I would guess SYB is referring to the 85/1.4 now up for bids and at $250 last time I looked.
Disassembly appears the only way to address fungus and determine the kind and whether cleaning will correct it. A crap-shoot for sure, but I've been know to roll the dice, now and then ................(8- )
10-30-2007, 07:49 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by John Kovarik Quote
I would guess SYB is referring to the 85/1.4 now up for bids and at $250 last time I looked.
Yes, that's it! My hints were clear enough, weren't they? You did some great searching work. Although the $250 has not yet been made.

Latest news is that te fungus is on (or near) the rear element. That makes the one-eighth of an inch all around the lens a little bit worse. (I thought it would be on the front element, and that one has much more glass than the rear element. So in % covered p/glass it's worse.) And the damage has really been done on the inside of the lens.

Seller was not able to post pictures made with the lens recently, nor was he able to post pictures of the lens with the fungus. I saw other pics in the internet proving that it should be possible to make a picture of it. The fact that this seller does not do it, makes me fear it's bad.



That's why I've stopped bidding.

10-30-2007, 08:33 AM   #9
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about yellowing

I just wanted to mention that yellowing from what I've read is not a problem. There are ways online to fix it, something to the effect of wrapping the lens in aluminium foil and keeping it in sunlight. There's another site showing a different way to cure it, consisting of smashing the lens to bits with a sledge hammer.
As for the previous message about no photos of the fungus, it's not all that easy to take a good photo, as the seller mentioned, I wouldn't be suspicious just from that.
10-30-2007, 08:34 AM   #10
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Great work! f you were Belgian I'd say the 'little grey cells' are working. I'll keep watching and maybe bid but not very high...........the lack of seller cooperation is, as one might say, 'veerrry interesting'...........
11-01-2007, 03:30 PM   #11
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Well this auction is going a bit nuts. Yes it's a good lens but you could easily be getting a paperweight. At $521.00 and there's still 2 days left. At the very least you're looking at $150-300+ for a proper cleaning to protect the "investment"

SMC PENTAX - A 85mm lens 1:1.4 - (eBay item 140173034771 end time Nov-03-07 14:30:40 PDT)
11-01-2007, 03:36 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by davidxgreen Quote
I just wanted to mention that yellowing from what I've read is not a problem. There are ways online to fix it, something to the effect of wrapping the lens in aluminium foil and keeping it in sunlight. There's another site showing a different way to cure it, consisting of smashing the lens to bits with a sledge hammer.
As for the previous message about no photos of the fungus, it's not all that easy to take a good photo, as the seller mentioned, I wouldn't be suspicious just from that.
Yellowing that you are referring to is for the older Tak 50 f1.4's and a few other similar lenses. They contained thorium as a multi coating that yellowed over time. The tin foil and sunlight trick will work over about 3 weeks of strong exposure to the sun. It wouldn't fix this issue though. Fungus will etch the glass and yellow it with an acid by product of the growth. Once it's affected this way it's done for. 2 different issues with 2 different lenses.
11-01-2007, 04:41 PM   #13
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I have heard that you can place a lens with fungus under sunlight and it will clear up. Otherwise have it professionallly cleaned.
11-01-2007, 05:46 PM   #14
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Uh oh, I wonder if that's really a little bit or an ebay "little bit"...sort of like an ebay "mint"...
11-01-2007, 08:51 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Takman Quote
I have heard that you can place a lens with fungus under sunlight and it will clear up. Otherwise have it professionallly cleaned.
if the fungus has etched into the glass then cleaning is the only option.
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