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03-05-2013, 05:56 PM   #1
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M42 Screw mount Question

Hello, everyone.

I need some advice regarding an adapter for an old Pentax screw mount lens.

Today, I bought an old Takumar at Adorama, but didn't realize until I got home that I would need an adapter in order to attach the lens to either of my Pentax cameras.

More than a few of the reviews at Adorama and B&H's sites said to stay away from some of the cheaper M42 mounts.

Most of the complaints were to the effect that the adapters got stuck on some of the cameras, and wouldn't come off.

So, which adapter should I buy?

Are there any that I should stay away from?

By the way, the lens, a Takumar 150mm f4.0 is in absolutely mint condition. I really don't want to return the lens, but will do so if it seems like I'll have trouble getting the right adapter.

Any info appreciated.

Mike

03-05-2013, 06:11 PM   #2
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The genuine Pentax adapter K is currently selling for about $50 on eBay.
03-05-2013, 06:12 PM   #3
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Mike,

I have had very good success with my genuine Pentax adapters, but have not used any of the the 'after-market' brands. The Pentax model installs very smoothly; fits precisely, positively, and cleanly; and removes equally easily. It provides for convenient and hassle-free use in the field. It is machined to close tolerance, and mates well to the body mount. Finally, the threads provide for a close and wobble-free mounting of the lens. Needless to say, it allows the M42 lens to focus to infinity, which certain 'flanged' adapters do not. Finally, no additional tool is required to remove the adapter - certain after-market varieties come with a small device that is used to dislocate the securing spring.

Other users may wish to offer their comments on other brands and compare them with the genuine Pentax version. There are a number of threads in the forum that discuss the pros and cons.

Concerning the price: For my first adapter, I bit the bullet and paid the full 'Canadian' retail price (a local outlet had several on the shelf) to ensure I got one. I originally thought it was a steep price to pay for a small piece of metal; later, I appreciated its quality and ease of use and have not had any remorse. Recently, I bought another for a good price on Kijiji to provide more convenience and to serve as a back-up in case of loss or damage. You might be lucky to find one in the PF Marketplace or on ebay.

Sounds like you found a terrific copy of the Takumar 150. Wonderful lenses.
- Craig
03-05-2013, 06:30 PM   #4
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SRB worked for me

I think I paid around $34 with shipping for this one. It came without any instructions and I found it a bit odd to use at first. It works well once you are used to it.

Pentax M42 adaptor|M42 lens| Pentax K

03-05-2013, 07:18 PM   #5
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Not related to the OP's question.. How easily should the lens Auto/Manual switch move. I came across a SMC Tak 50/1.4 but aborted purchasing because it appeared to be stuck... I've never seen an M42 kit in use so thought the equipment was damaged. Cheers.
03-05-2013, 07:38 PM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
Not related to the OP's question.. How easily should the lens Auto/Manual switch move. I came across a SMC Tak 50/1.4 but aborted purchasing because it appeared to be stuck... I've never seen an M42 kit in use so thought the equipment was damaged. Cheers.
It's supposed to do that. The Spotmatic F and Spotmatic ES have open aperture metering. when a S-M-C or SMC Tak is mounted they have to be in auto or the camera can be damaged. There is a pin on the back of the lens, when it is mounted on an older Spotmatic the pin is depressed and the lens can be put into manual.


03-05-2013, 08:01 PM   #7
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Someone on the forum is selling 2 genuine adapters for $40 apiece I think. Also, I have used adapters from fotodiox without any issue at all.
03-05-2013, 08:18 PM   #8
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I have both genuine Pentax and third party adapters. The problem with the third party stuff is there seems to be an assumption that the adapter will stay on the camera. Hence the little tool to remove the adapter - not something you want to bother with when in the field. I remove the spring clip to get rid of that hassle. My adapters stay on the lens. One of my third party adapters was also very tight. That is not a bad thing. I polished it down with some fine emery paper (finish with 1000 grit or polishing compound and clean well afterwards). Now it slides on perfectly, which is far better than being loose. The third thing with the third party adpater is to drill a small recess for the lens locating pin to slip into. Simple electric drill job. If you use M42 mount (and I do because there are some good lenses and I like adapting stuff) you will probably be comfortable with the DIY approach.

03-05-2013, 09:57 PM   #9
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Here is the executive summary:
  • The Pentax adapter is best, but hard to come by
  • With very few exceptions third-party adapters are prone to problems with getting "stuck" on the camera
  • The reason for the "stuck" adapters is complicated, though the fix is not. Remove the retaining spring. Doing so has the unhappy side-effect of leaving friction as the only force holding the lens to the camera.
  • There is one third-party adapter that I have never read a bad report on. That is the SRB Giturn item linked above. These are manufactured in Britain and sold by the maker.
From personal experience, I can attest that one experience with a "stuck" adapter creates a bad taste that persists and persists and persists...


Steve

(...almost had to resort to a Dremel...)
03-06-2013, 09:35 AM   #10
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WOW!

I didn't expect so many knowledgeable replies!

Thanks, everyone.

I'm probably going to buy an adapter from Amazon, since I've dealt with them before, and they're pretty reliable. Thanks, DavidOBryan.

And as c.a.m wrote, I agree that it seems a lot of money for a small piece of metal, but when it comes to machined parts, you do get what you pay for.

For those interested, I paid $44.00 US for this lens. Adorama classified it as having some wear, but this lens is just short of being in brand new condition. The glass is flawless! And it came with the original Pentax lens case and hood!

I'll try to get a decent photo of it posted later today if possible.

Adorama had other short teles with bayonet mounts, but they were all near or over the $100 mark. So, $44 plus $50 for the adapter puts me in this neighborhood. Then, I'll have the adapter in case I buy other screw mount lenses.

I sincerely want to thank everyone who responded to this thread.

I really do appreciate it.

Mike
03-06-2013, 09:40 AM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
Not related to the OP's question.. How easily should the lens Auto/Manual switch move. I came across a SMC Tak 50/1.4 but aborted purchasing because it appeared to be stuck... I've never seen an M42 kit in use so thought the equipment was damaged. Cheers.
If it's that tiny pin, it doesn't just "appear" to be stuck, it gives every impression of a complete spectacular unrepairable failure. That's reinforced by the timing - you just pick up the lens, start admiring its construction, do something unrelated like unscrewing the rear cap, then it gives you the broken forever act.
03-06-2013, 01:25 PM   #12
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with respect to "cheap 3rd party adaptors getting stuck, there are 2 points to be careful with, which lead to this condition.

first of all, (and I am using a cheap bower one bought at B&H as an example) the screw that holds the spring in place is too long, and if you thread your lens on, this screw binds the threads, not only marring the threads but potentially sticking the lens to the mount. THis is dangerous because once stuck and on the camera, the spring clip cannot be released to take anything off the lens. the solution is very simple, just put in a shorter screw or file it down.

the second issue is that the spring does not sit square in the slot provided, and the spring projects up into the lens mount with a sharp corner that can bind and buckle when unscrewing the lens. once the spring is buckled, even if you can get the lens off the camera, the adapter may be somewhat difficult to get off because the buckled spring won't go past the lens mount like a straight one will. the solution is to file the spring and re-align in so it does not stick up into the mount area.

once both these points are addressed the mounts are safe to use.

it is unfortunate that you need to be somewhat mechanically inclined to make the cheap adapter work, but thats life.

as an aside, the reason I got a cheap adapter from B&H is because the one they sell also has a flange that presses the aperture activation button, and will therefore stop down an auto aperture lens which does not have an A-M switch.
03-06-2013, 02:55 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
irst of all, (and I am using a cheap bower one bought at B&H as an example) the screw that holds the spring in place is too long, and if you thread your lens on, this screw binds the threads, not only marring the threads but potentially sticking the lens to the mount. THis is dangerous because once stuck and on the camera, the spring clip cannot be released to take anything off the lens. the solution is very simple, just put in a shorter screw or file it down.

the second issue is that the spring does not sit square in the slot provided, and the spring projects up into the lens mount with a sharp corner that can bind and buckle when unscrewing the lens. once the spring is buckled, even if you can get the lens off the camera, the adapter may be somewhat difficult to get off because the buckled spring won't go past the lens mount like a straight one will. the solution is to file the spring and re-align in so it does not stick up into the mount area.
...and a third issue is poor machining that allows the adapter to over-rotate slightly in the mount resulting in a jammed spring.

The adapter that Lowell refers to from B&H is similar to the item pictured here:

General Brand Pentax-K Body to Universal Lens Adapter ABPKS B&H

Notice that the listing says it is "General" brand, but the illustration says Kipon. It is my understanding that Kipon makes the versions with the aperture activation flange, though it is hard to say. Brand name is a fluid concept in the world of M42 adapters.


Steve
03-06-2013, 04:03 PM   #14
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Hello, everyone.

I had the time, and took a few shots of the lens.

In the first photo, you see everything I got for $44.00 US dollars.

The second photo is a close up of the lens itself.

Taken with my Pentax M 100mm macro. Edited in Lightroom.

Now, I just have to order an adapter.

Mike
The EXIF for the first photo says it was taken with a 55 mm lens, but I hadn't changed the lens description at that point. Both photos were taken with the100mm macro.

Last edited by Mike Bokeh; 05-25-2014 at 09:39 PM.
03-06-2013, 04:32 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Bokeh Quote
For those interested, I paid $44.00 US for this lens. Adorama classified it as having some wear, but this lens is just short of being in brand new condition. The glass is flawless! And it came with the original Pentax lens case and hood!
I have one of those lens and agree with you - great short tele lens and renders beautifully - congrats on the purchase! You will enjoy this one once you get the adapter working - You will now be eligible to post on the Takumar thread and have now started your collection of Takumar lenses.
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