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03-22-2016, 01:11 PM   #1
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Rikenon 50mm 1.4 - Iris stopped working, stuck wide open

I love my Rikenon 50 1.4... it has bokeh like no other lens I own... but yesterday the iris got stuck wide open. At first I thought it was a camera issue, but then I took the lens off the camera, and it still doesn't close when I move the aperture ring. The aperture ring itself clicks nicely. The aperture lever moves normally and I see movement on the other side of the lens (some part is doing something). So I'm thinking it might just be something that became lose or a part that broke - maybe even one of the blades. There was never any oil on the blades and until yesterday they were nice and snappy.

I got the lens for about 35 dollars a couple years ago, as it has a bent filter ring. It was obviously dropped by a previous owner, but optically and functionally it didn't have any issues at all.

Is it worth fixing? All I could find about these kind of issues were old threads that pointed to repair places that would charge 100+ dollars to work on a lens like this. I might end up offering the lens locally to anyone who would like to try to take it on as a project... I don't really have the means to fix it right now and it would be cheaper to buy another one, I think. Or is there something I could do?

Here's my flickr album with that lens... https://www.flickr.com/photos/11375085@N02/albums/72157644846475510

03-22-2016, 01:30 PM   #2
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I have a CPC 28mm macro with the same problem. It's a good, but cheap lens so I'll probably not bother repairing. Your Rikenon produced some great images and might be worth fixing. You might consider Eric Hendrickson, unless someone here has some good DIY advice. Good luck.
03-22-2016, 01:44 PM   #3
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I have a Rikenon 50mm f1.4. Mine is the P version. I love that lens, but I would sell it to you if I wasn't off in Africa right now

I think those lenses are fairly simple as to their mechanics and stuff especially compared to modern lenses so if you send it to someone like dcshooter or another qualified person they should be able to fix it up no problem. If you like the lens I would say go for it.

I paid around $95 bucks for mine but it was fresh off of a professional tune up, cleaning, and all that other stuff.

---------- Post added 03-22-16 at 03:48 PM ----------

Ricoh 50mm Rikenon P f/1.4 Lens Reviews - Ricoh Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

Even if it costs you 50 or 60 bucks to get it fixed you are getting more than your money's worth out of it.
03-22-2016, 02:00 PM   #4
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Eric's out of action due to illness right now, IIRC, so you might have a wait there - but if you send it to dcshooter and you have both the desire and the money, he might be able to do one of his lovely silvering jobs when he opens it up (provided of course it's fixable).

03-22-2016, 02:31 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by pathdoc Quote
but if you send it to dcshooter and you have both the desire and the money, he might be able to do one of his lovely silvering jobs when he opens it up (provided of course it's fixable).
That is an excellent suggestion, assuming you decide to not attempt the repair yourself. As noted above, the mechanism is likely very simple and the cause may be something as simple as a broken spring requiring only a partial tear-down from the mount side. With any luck @dcshooter may weigh in. I believe he may have worked on one of these in the past.


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03-22-2016, 02:55 PM   #6
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I have the desire, but not really the money

It's a beater as I said, the filter ring is bent. So I'm not sure it's a candidate for embelishment. And I'm not going to spend over a hundred dollars on a 35 dollar lens

I'm curious about the self fixing route, but not having ever done this before, I wonder if I would just end up ruining the lens...
03-22-2016, 03:06 PM   #7
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What happens when you move the aperture actuating lever (I am assuming your lens would behave like an M lens)?
03-22-2016, 05:59 PM   #8
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Nothing, the lens is stuck wide open.

03-22-2016, 07:54 PM - 1 Like   #9
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I suspect a spring that clips onto the lever arm (that sticks out the back) has slipped off. If you are brave, you can take the screws off the mount, take the mount off and see if the aperture lever arm is actuating the aperture properly via that spring.

My guess.
03-22-2016, 08:10 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by FotoPete Quote
I suspect a spring that clips onto the lever arm (that sticks out the back) has slipped off. If you are brave, you can take the screws off the mount, take the mount off and see if the aperture lever arm is actuating the aperture properly via that spring.

My guess.
That seems to make sense, it was "springier" before. Now the aperture lever seems to have less resistance. I might have to try this...
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