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02-10-2010, 06:29 PM   #1
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Spots and scratches in an old lens...

Just received an older AF lens from an ebay seller who had described it as "mint", however there are these two spots behind the front element that are easy to see from the side, or when you look at it head on with light coming in from the side. They are white dots with a small circle of white haze around them, near the center of the front element. Then as I was looking at these spots, I noticed there are scratches on the same inside surface of the front element, and what looks like haze around the edges... was this a lens that was at some point cleaned badly? Maybe the spots are a fungus coming back?

I haven't had the best luck with the few "mint" lenses I've bought from ebay, and I think this one will be going back to the seller shortly...

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02-10-2010, 07:06 PM   #2
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Looks like fungus.
02-10-2010, 08:35 PM   #3
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Yeah, it does look like the start of fungus. I hope the seller won't drag out the return process for you.
02-10-2010, 08:48 PM   #4
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Definitely isn't Mint. Some people play fast and loose with condition terms having no clue what they actually mean but Mint implies untouched.

You said Fungus Coming Back. Did the seller disclose something like the lens has been taken apart and cleaned? If he didn't he further lied at worse or didn't know at best. Either way, lenses don't scratch themselves on internal element surfaces.

I think you have a pretty good case for return.

02-11-2010, 09:33 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by JeffJS Quote
Definitely isn't Mint. Some people play fast and loose with condition terms having no clue what they actually mean but Mint implies untouched.

You said Fungus Coming Back. Did the seller disclose something like the lens has been taken apart and cleaned? If he didn't he further lied at worse or didn't know at best. Either way, lenses don't scratch themselves on internal element surfaces.

I think you have a pretty good case for return.
Thanks for the feedback, everyone...

I've got to say, ebay has made me appreciate this forum's marketplace with it's clearly defined terms, and sellers who in general do a much better job of listing items.

Fungus coming back was just a guess on my part... I figured maybe the scratches on the inside of the front element were due to a botched cleaning in the past, and since it's an AF lens presumably it didn't need to be cleaned due to adhesive fogging (I hear that's a problem more with older, MF lenses). And since a fungus can have spores, if you just clean the most obviously affected areas of fungus, I imagine it can come back.

The seller made no mention of it having been cleaned in his listing, and when I emailed him about it and sent him photos he did get back to me and apologize, and explained that he had bought the lens in a lot from a New England seller and had done some test shots with the lens on his K-x and hadn't noticed any problems. He did offer to take it back.
02-11-2010, 09:47 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by nater Quote
Thanks for the feedback, everyone...

I've got to say, ebay has made me appreciate this forum's marketplace with it's clearly defined terms, and sellers who in general do a much better job of listing items.

Fungus coming back was just a guess on my part... I figured maybe the scratches on the inside of the front element were due to a botched cleaning in the past, and since it's an AF lens presumably it didn't need to be cleaned due to adhesive fogging (I hear that's a problem more with older, MF lenses). And since a fungus can have spores, if you just clean the most obviously affected areas of fungus, I imagine it can come back.

The seller made no mention of it having been cleaned in his listing, and when I emailed him about it and sent him photos he did get back to me and apologize, and explained that he had bought the lens in a lot from a New England seller and had done some test shots with the lens on his K-x and hadn't noticed any problems. He did offer to take it back.
Then you're all good. Get your refund and chalk it up.. Yes, Fungus can be cleaned off but you have to kill it in order to prevent it from coming back. You probably wouldn't notice any real photo problems with the lens but it isn't the Mint it was (as you say) described to be. Lens elements can be pretty screwed up and still produce good results.

Good luck..
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