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03-05-2010, 07:13 PM   #1
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Bower M42 to PK adapter = not happy

The photography nothing special, sorry. Not making pictures, just documenting a problem. Hopefully will help others or someone can have some suggestions for me.

1: Bower adapter. Note Chinese packaging and lack of instructions.

2: Clip that attaches adapter to camera body. Also seen referred to as "spring" and "set screw" on this forum.

3. Reverse of clip. Note that attachment screw extends into threading. This means that when you attempt to screw your M42 lens into the adapter, it will stop ...

4. ...with a gap as seen here. Alternatively, you could keep turning, and destroy the threads on your lens ..

5. ...as I started to do here on what *was* an almost mint 50/4 macro. (The top thread. The scratch on the bottom is also from the adapter; that was later)

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03-05-2010, 08:12 PM   #2
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That is very shoddy. I actually have a Bower that is about 3 years old and mine isn't like this. The screw is not protruding through the threads. Seems the quality has dropped.

I guess about all you could do is replace the screw with a shorter one or take the clip off but it won't lock in place any more.
03-05-2010, 08:30 PM   #3
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Hey, I wasn't finished, had a 5 image max

Okay 2 warnings for others. This *didn't* happen to me, but I could easily have been careless enough for it to be ..

If you treat the screw as a set screw, and loosen it, then screw down the adapter, then tighten the set screw, you will not need locktite as mentioned in other threads. BUT if you do so *without* first removing the "spring" portion, you will be screwed, pardon the pun. The tab will lock into your body, and the set screw will be locked onto your lens, and it will be time to get the sawzall out.

Image 1: ALSO, I'm not sure what the button that activates the auto/man selection is called on these lenses, but again, if the button is extended (I.E. set to auto), the adapter will screw down on it, and then the button will pop up between the slots in the adapter. Again, if the spring is still attached, this will mean no removing the lens without hacking apart the lens or your body. ..

Image 2: PLEASE note that in order for that to happen, you wouldn't have to do anything out of the ordinary, just attach the adapter while the lens is in auto mode. The only reason I *didn't* end up screwed like this is because I ran into the problem with the "set screw" that kept me from fully attaching the lens

Image 3: Finally, even without the set screw or spring attached, once the adapter is fully secured, there is no clearance between the aperture indicator tab and the top of the ring. You can see from the scuff along the inner surface of the ring where the tab dragged when I tried to change the aperture (which of course was very difficult to do, because it was stuck against the adapter)

I hope this will help others from making an error. Also, if anyone can recommend a different adapter, I specifically wanted the non-pentax kind because I wanted to attach it to the lens rather than the body .. This one is going back to B&H
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03-05-2010, 09:00 PM   #4
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I have a generic adapter as well that came with a lens from a seller here. Although the spring and screw were removed, I do have other issues with it not lining up my M42 lenses properly which makes me question if the planes and distance are all lined up. The tops of the lenses point towards the release button on mine. Thats why I'm holding out for a genuine Pentax adapter.

03-05-2010, 09:08 PM   #5
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On non-official-Pentax adapters, ALWAYS remove the screw and clip. But don't think the official Pentax adapter is magic -- lenses don't always line up with it either. I was just today dealing with this, with lenses needing a camera rotation in order to read their aperture/distance scales. True, I was fitting strange old Russian and German glass, not official Takumars. But that Jupitar-9 and a Meyer always need a body flip. Bother...
03-06-2010, 02:30 AM   #6
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@Asudef

I have two original Pentax PK adaptors; one I bought about two months ago and the aperture marker of attached lenses is indeed not at the 12 o'clock position (guess about 10-15 degrees out). The second adaptor is far older (from the 80s I guess) and the aperture marker of the attached lenses is very close to the 12 o'clock position (maybe a degree or two).

I posted a question about the first one (did not have the second one at that stage) and I understand now that as long as the lens is flush with the camera there are no problems.
03-06-2010, 03:13 AM   #7
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The forum only has about a zillion posts advising people to get a genuine Pentax adapter to begin with because:

1. They're not so much more expensive
2. You're going to end up buying one anyway

And with the annoying butt-ugly built-in flash protrusion on DSLRs, 12 o'clock is the last place I would want a lens to line up if I actually want to see the markings. I consider the offset a design feature, not a flaw.
03-06-2010, 04:47 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
The forum only has about a zillion posts advising people to get a genuine Pentax adapter to begin with because:

1. They're not so much more expensive
2. You're going to end up buying one anyway
Listen to Mike. Do what Mike says. The only reason to ignore Mike's advice is that "you don't have enough aggravation in your life". You could have turned a almost mint 50/4 macro into a door stop.

My own story is that when I got my DSLR the Pentax web store was "out of stock" on the Mount Adapter K(35mm Screwmount to Bayonet). Not being of the instant gratification generation, I knew to wait. But did I? NOOOO! Ordered the adapter from B&H, and got a Bower. Piece of crap. Talked to cust. svc. They sent me a second one free. Now I have 2 pieces of crap. Pentax web store got the adapter in stock. Bought one. Now there is a white picket fence around my front yard, the grass is always green, and it never needs mowing.

Did I remember to mention that you should get a genuine Pentax adapter?

03-06-2010, 06:18 AM   #9
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Not all Bowers are bad...

I've tried several adapters and while I haven't used the one depicted in the OP's photos, I have tried one branded as "Bower" (from BH) that required a tool to spin it off from the camera body.

I didn't have any problems with that one at all, and as a matter of fact I almost feel that the Bower seemed stronger and more substantial than the genuine Pentax that I also own.

The downside is that you had to keep track of this tool (like a specialized spanner wrench) and you had to spend several moments with your camera body pointing upward w/o a lens. The genuine Pentax article can be removed with a fingernail while keeping the camera pointing downward.

But if I were going to use a long Takumar (300-500mm) and have my camera body dangling off the back, I might opt to use that particular Bower adapter... pretty sturdy stuff.

thanks,

germar
03-06-2010, 10:18 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by sterretje Quote
@Asudef

I have two original Pentax PK adaptors; one I bought about two months ago and the aperture marker of attached lenses is indeed not at the 12 o'clock position (guess about 10-15 degrees out). The second adaptor is far older (from the 80s I guess) and the aperture marker of the attached lenses is very close to the 12 o'clock position (maybe a degree or two).

I posted a question about the first one (did not have the second one at that stage) and I understand now that as long as the lens is flush with the camera there are no problems.
I have 2 adapters, and came up with a theory about that. Don't forget, it may or may not be right
Early Pentax cameras didn't have the flash unit, so it was easy to just look straight down and you'd see your f-stop.
However with later cameras, that have the flash in the way they changed things just a little... rotating it just to the right (from behind the camera) so we could still easily check our f-stop.
This is based on what I've noticed about earlier adapters usually lining up close to the top.... and later adapters usually line up pretty close to the same spot as well.
03-06-2010, 11:03 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
The forum only has about a zillion posts advising people to get a genuine Pentax adapter to begin with because:

1. They're not so much more expensive
.

Not sure about where you are but just recently the genuine adapters have risen dramatically here in the UK. THIS seems to be about the going price now.

converted to US$ = approx $100
03-06-2010, 11:07 AM   #12
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@little laker
In that case, Pentax could have turned the bajonet on bodies with a flash as well for use with K-mount lenses with aperture ring This would automatically have affected the M42 lenses as well, Might look a bit odd, though.

@Mike.P
It's about what I paid for mine (US$80 taking usual conversion rate into account, about US$100 for official exchange rate).

Last edited by sterretje; 03-06-2010 at 11:12 AM.
03-06-2010, 11:22 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by wlank Quote
Not being of the instant gratification generation, I knew to wait. But did I? NOOOO! Ordered the adapter from B&H, and got a Bower. Piece of crap. Talked to cust. svc. They sent me a second one free. Now I have 2 pieces of crap.
You did not follow the basic rule for not-official-Pentax M42-PK adapters: Remove the screw and clip. NOW! I have about 10 such adapters. With the first, I had endless aggravation, and then I learned that rule. Now I keep those adapters attached to various M39/M42 lenses, and I almost forget they aren't just PK-M glass. Procedure: place Bowers etc adapter on lens thread. Place PK rear lens cap on adapter. Screw down tight. Cast your worries to the wind. Cast the adapter removal tool in the junque heap. No hay problemo.

I have just spent part of the morning wandering around my house, re-shooting various Injun Stuff here (mostly pottery) with Kaf Pentax FA 50/1.4, and adaptered M39 Jupiter-9 85/2, M42 Isco-Westron 35/2.8, and M42 Vivitar 21/3.5. Slip'em on, shoot, slip'em off. The only difference is resetting from Av to M. The slightest snag: the M39-M42 adapter on the Jupiter isn't quite as snug as the Bowers, so I have to be mindful when close-focusing not to loosen the lens.

QuoteQuote:
Did I remember to mention that you should get a genuine Pentax adapter?
I also own an official Pentax adapter. It does not get much use. On the odd day when I intend to use only screwmounts (the ones I haven't fitted with their own adapters) on either the ZX-M or K20D, I insert the official Pentax adapter into that camera. The adapter stays there all day, because removing it is more trouble than just screwing lenses. And removing it allows more dust into the body.

I also own a few non-infinity-focus (flanged) adapters. One stays on a huge M42 Russian 1000mm mirror, with tubes pushing the lens out past the K20D's flash bump. One lives on a M42 Spiratone 400mm which normally focuses past infinity. One stays on a M42 bellows. And one is occasionally slipped onto other lenses for portrait or other close-up sessions where I'm not interested in infinity anyway.

Every adapter is a tool. Every tool has its purpose. It's a poor worker who blames their tools.
Learn to use the tools, and the world is bright and merry, tra la, tra la.

PS: On thing that pi$$e$ me off, I mean perturbs me, is that bayonet mounts don't support M42 lenses with aperture pins. How about an adapter with an actuator linkage built in? Then I could get rid of those funky fungoid Praktica bodies. Of course, the adapter wouldn't be cheap, oh no, of course not. Bitch grumble whine groan...

Last edited by RioRico; 03-06-2010 at 11:36 AM.
03-06-2010, 01:57 PM   #14
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I just bought 2 of these:

M42 to Pentax k10D k100D K200D K20D DL adapter(silver) - eBay, Other Accessories, Photographic Accessories, Cameras. (end time 26-Mar-10 19:06:30 AEDST)

They seem to be fairly good quality. I have removed the clip & permanent mount on lens.

The problem I have is on my K-x liview doesnt work ? Liveview turns on for 2-4 seconds but then it turns off by itself. I only have this problem with the M42 adapter. Does anyone know why ??

EDIT: I think I know why....the base of the adapter is not wide enough to short out the auto pins on the body. This seems to screw up some functions on the body like video & liveview.

Last edited by tux; 03-06-2010 at 03:06 PM.
03-06-2010, 02:39 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike.P Quote
Not sure about where you are but just recently the genuine adapters have risen dramatically here in the UK. THIS seems to be about the going price now.

converted to US$ = approx $100
It's unbelievable but it's true in Finland too. I bought a genuine adapter back in 2008 for 24eur now I checked the same place (cyberphoto.fi) again and it's 88eur What gives?
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