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12-03-2009, 12:35 PM   #1
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Helios-44M-4 and M42 Question

I bought a Helios 44M-4 lens to play with. It seems to be a very nice lens. It does not have a switch of any kind on it. It olny has a pin on the mount side. Turning the aperture ring does not have any effect on the aperture. It always stays open. The only way I can get the aperture to close is to depress the pin.

I mounted the lens on the body and put the body in "M" mode. No mater what aperture I set the lens at, it always stays open and gives me wide open shots, Which btw are very good I think. But how can I get the aperture to stop down? I remember reading somewhere about the pin surgery but I can't find it. What would the pin surgery do? Would I be able to use the "M" mode after surgery, or I will be stuck in shooting in AV mode with stopped down lens? I need some clarification please. Thanks.

12-03-2009, 12:51 PM   #2
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Here's a thread explaining the surgery Sears 60-300(auto aperture, push pull zoom): Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

I never did the surgery but in my understanding, you will remove the pin but at the same time make the lens act as if the pin is always pushed, that way you can stop down the lens and use it in M mode, instead of using Av mode but wide open only. Good luck!

EDIT: that thread does not cover the way to keep the lens in manual (pin pushed) though. Hmm, I remember it was discussed in pentaxforums but I couldnt' find the thread

Last edited by sajah; 12-03-2009 at 01:02 PM.
12-03-2009, 01:22 PM   #3
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Thanks. I also found this thread, which seems like exactly what I need to do.


https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/57058-helios-4...onversion.html
12-03-2009, 01:52 PM   #4
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Yeah that's the thread! I bookmarked it now, thanks! I dont know is it just me but it seems the search function does not work as good as before anymore

12-03-2009, 02:30 PM   #5
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I did the mod and it works just fine. But it works only stopped down. You don't get the benefit of focusing wide open. Oh, well..
12-03-2009, 02:32 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Stratario Quote
I did the mod and it works just fine. But it works only stopped down. You don't get the benefit of focusing wide open. Oh, well..
Learn yourself focussing wide open and than quickly change the aperture (via the ring) before shooting. That's what I - and I guess hundreds of us here - do !
12-03-2009, 05:33 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Stratario Quote
I did the mod and it works just fine. But it works only stopped down. You don't get the benefit of focusing wide open. Oh, well..
That, unfortunately, is the sad, sad story. Many Russian M42 lenses of recent manufacturer are that way (e.g. Zenitar 16/2.8 in M42). If you want a preset lens (focus open and flick a switch to stop down), you would need the Helios 44M (no hyphen), 44-2, or 44-3 (no "M"). The best option is the fairly rare Helios 44K (k-mount). It supports fully automatic aperture with stop-down metering on a Pentax dSLR.

Steve

(Owns the 44M (no hyphen)...)
12-03-2009, 06:26 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
That, unfortunately, is the sad, sad story. Many Russian M42 lenses of recent manufacturer are that way (e.g. Zenitar 16/2.8 in M42). If you want a preset lens (focus open and flick a switch to stop down), you would need the Helios 44M (no hyphen), 44-2, or 44-3 (no "M"). The best option is the fairly rare Helios 44K (k-mount). It supports fully automatic aperture with stop-down metering on a Pentax dSLR.

Steve

(Owns the 44M (no hyphen)...)

Thanks Steve. Appreciate the information. Do you know if any one of the three you mentioned is MC?



12-03-2009, 07:02 PM   #9
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How much is that 44K worth, do you suppose?

There's a minty Zenit something-or-other at a shop here in SD that's fairly cheap with a super clean 44K...I skipped it the first time but am having second thoughts if I could hook somebody up here with it...

I just don't need to start collecting K-mount lenses as I've got enough Taks and like them just fine.
12-03-2009, 08:21 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Stratario Quote
Thanks Steve. Appreciate the information. Do you know if any one of the three you mentioned is MC?

The 44-3 is MC as are some version of 44M-x models. I believe that the 44K-x is MC as well. All are prominently labeled MC on the front of the lens. I also believe that all were made at the BELOMO plant as opposed to KMZ or Valdai. (All of this off the top of my head...someone else jump in if I am wrong...)

Steve
12-03-2009, 08:24 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fixcinater Quote
How much is that 44K worth, do you suppose?

There's a minty Zenit something-or-other at a shop here in SD that's fairly cheap with a super clean 44K...I skipped it the first time but am having second thoughts if I could hook somebody up here with it...

I just don't need to start collecting K-mount lenses as I've got enough Taks and like them just fine.
So what are they asking? I have seen the 44K go for $45 or more. If you can get the camera and lens for not much more than that, I would go for it if for no better reason than to have the novelty of playing with the clunky Zenit body!

Steve
12-03-2009, 10:13 PM   #12
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It'd be $31.25 plus tax for it, they are having a 75% off sale until they are out of stuff to sell.

I don't need another film camera, so it'd be a give-away with the lens if I didn't dig it.
12-03-2009, 11:28 PM   #13
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That's a great deal on a 44K.

I paid $50 for mine and wouldn't part with it.
12-04-2009, 06:04 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fixcinater Quote
It'd be $31.25 plus tax for it, they are having a 75% off sale until they are out of stuff to sell.

I don't need another film camera, so it'd be a give-away with the lens if I didn't dig it.
Buy it! You will have no problem turning it around on the marketplace if you don't like the lens.

Steve

(Better yet...just send it to me...I will test both lens and camera for you...)
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