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11-13-2007, 06:00 PM   #1
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Broken FA-50 1.4

After my trip to Italy I now have a broken FA-50 1.4. It appears something has come loose and the lens won't focus past about 3m. The focus ring starts to bind up and then just stops. I can hear something rattling around inside when I shake the lens so I'm guessing a screw has come loose. I bought the lens in China so I doubt seriously if I have any kind of warranty on it. I plan on sending Pentax an email to see if I can have it checked under warranty just in case.

I'm wondering if anyone has ever taken one of these lenses (or anything near it) apart before? I was thinking of opening it up to see if I can fix it. If I trash it in the process it's not a huge deal as I'll probably order a new one soon to replace it. I wouldn't trust this one now unless I had it serviced by Pentax. I'm just looking for information and advice if I do wind up opening it up.

Thanks in advance,

Slick


Last edited by Slick; 11-13-2007 at 07:13 PM.
11-13-2007, 06:47 PM   #2
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I dismantled a crushed FA 50mm before to remove the focus ring for parts for another 50mm lens. I don't really have any advice specific to the lens, but I do know some easy things you can do and things you should watch for.

The easiest parts to remove on that lens are the rear mount flange and the filter ring on the front, because they're just held on with a few easily accessible screws. You'll just need one of those cheap jeweler's screw driver sets.

It might also be good to take pictures as you work so you can remember where everything goes.

To remove the rear mount, just unscrew the screws on the back. When removing the rear mount flange, be very careful because the contact pins are held up by pressure from tiny springs. It's very easy to lose the contact pins and the springs. You might want to take a picture so you can reference where the pins go if one or two fall off.

After you get the mount flange off, you might be able to see what's rattling around inside. Don't hold the lens upside down and shake it though! There's a metal ring inside that's usually just held in place by a spring and the mount flange. You don't want extra stuff falling out.

The filter ring is also easy to remove, but it doesn't really show you much. Maybe you have something stuck in the groove in the front though. Just turn the focus ring until the lens extends all the way out and you'll see 3 or 4 tiny screws on the side. After you unscrew those, the filter ring should come right off.

Beyond those two parts, it gets pretty tricky to dismantle the lens so I wouldn't go much further. Pentax will still service the lens so it'd be best to just send it to them. I had them fix a lens separation issue with my FA 28-70mm and it only cost about $80 + one way shipping. Your issue might be even cheaper since they might not need to fix any optics.

Good luck!

Last edited by igowerf; 11-13-2007 at 06:53 PM.
11-14-2007, 03:29 PM   #3
roy
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i haven't done one of these but you can ck here to see how i did a 50/2
Let
11-14-2007, 03:34 PM   #4
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I had a problem years ago with my SMC 50mm f/1.4 but to be honest, I don't recall exactly what it was now.

I think it was the front element, which I repaired by tightning the screws

11-14-2007, 04:19 PM   #5
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Thanks for the information everyone. A Pentax repair shop near me said they would repair the lens under warranty.

The only problem now is to find the receipt and hope they can read Chinese.

If I can't find the receipt I may take a stab at fixing it myself. I think the problem is fairly simple. I've bookmarked the page you mentioned Roy. Looks like it may be similar.

Thanks again,

Slick
11-14-2007, 05:36 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Slick Quote
Thanks for the information everyone. A Pentax repair shop near me said they would repair the lens under warranty.

The only problem now is to find the receipt and hope they can read Chinese.

If I can't find the receipt I may take a stab at fixing it myself. I think the problem is fairly simple. I've bookmarked the page you mentioned Roy. Looks like it may be similar.

Thanks again,

Slick
The store you got it from may have a copy of the receipt, if you remember its address. I wish you good luck in any case.

andy
11-19-2007, 06:42 AM   #7
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Gave it a try...

Well, I gave it a try. The front was nothing, 3 screws and the focus ring comes right off. Nothing to see here. The rear was a different story. igowerf was spot on, the pins and springs are a nightmare. I got the mounting plate off with no problem and discovered that my problem is something further inside the lens. Once I started to put it back together the fun began. The pins and the little plastic bracket that holds them in position are a bear to deal with. The springs are very loose and it's hard to get them to line up with the bracket. It took some doing but it's back together and ready to ship in for service. One other issue I had was the aperature ring. It came off by accident and it took me a while to figure out how to get it back on properly. Overall it was an interesting experience.
11-20-2007, 09:03 AM   #8
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Good to hear that you successfully put it back together again. I've broken a couple lenses while experimenting with lens repair...

11-21-2007, 12:42 PM   #9
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Any pictures?

QuoteOriginally posted by Slick Quote
Overall it was an interesting experience.
It's a pity that you couldn't fix it. Did you take any pictures while you were dismantling it? Even a few steps of the way might help people in the future who may want to take apart their lens.

Richard
11-22-2007, 05:59 AM   #10
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I didn't take pictures while I was doing it unfortunately. I was at work where my tools are plus I didn't have a camera with me at the time. I haven't sent it in for repair yet so I can go through it again and take pictures this time. When I do I'll post something here.

I ordered a new one from B&H yesterday. There's no telling how long it will take to get it repaired and I hate not having that lens available to use. It's one of my favorites.

I actually may buy a couple of broken lenses off that auction site sometime just to tear them apart and see what they look like inside. When I was young I had a box full of old, broken clocks I used to tinker with so I enjoy that kind of thing.

edit ** Spelling, it's too early.
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