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01-26-2021, 06:47 AM - 1 Like   #1
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K-30: multiple issues, shutter stuck, solenoid, etc

Hi,
I recently bought the K30 body, it was supposed to have the "dark photos syndrome". I had read about it before on the forum and saw some tutorials on YT.
And I found it interesting. So I decided to have some fun and try to fix it. Reality turned out to be a little less bright .
When the body arrived, some more problems showed up.
Thanks to this, the project "for fun" turned out to be even more interesting.

I did some testing and what do I know so far:

1. the previous owner tried to repair the solenoid by himself with the "grinding method", and failed.
2. black pictures instead of dark
3. mirror blocked on top
4. shutter does not fire
5. the camera starts up, the buttons work, the screen looks good
6. the mode selector wheel operates randomly (dial on the top) / after cleaning and reinstalling the ribbon cable it started working properly
7. the memory backup battery looks almost dead, the camera quickly forgets the settings (time), after removing the main battery
8. firmware v1.10 first version, the camera identifies itself as K50 / downgrade to oryginal v1.06 + debugging, no improvement
9. the adjustment wheels work strange, not always (I need to do more tests to figure it out) / fixed after unlocking the solenoid and setting the focus switch
10. sometimes the camera won't turn off and you need to remove the battery.
11. aftermarket battery / I don't see any impact on the camera's work
12. focus mode selector is not assembled properly (wrongly positioned) / works fine after reinstallation
13. mess with screws / solved thanks to pictures shared by photogem in this topic -> Length of screws in K30, K50 and K500 - PentaxForums.com



and that's all I have found for now, if there is more, I will complete the list

I didn't open camera yet.
I have bought a donor for solenoid (*istD) and I am gathering the information about possible solutions to this issues.
Except the testing, I have flashed the orginal firmware from pentax v1.06, and I did debugging. No changes by now.
I've tryed adapter 4xAA with fully charged Varta (Ready to go 2600mah), but K30 the camera says the voltage is too low (they are not brand new). I've insert oryginal battery from my other pentax, but it didn't change much ( as far I can see)
I've managed to shoot some pictures befere mirror and shutter got stuck, they where completly black, shutter counter is around 60k.

Well, yes, the list is quite long, probably some will say "recycle it" and probably it will be the best solution in this case.
But I like to fix things, and I want to give this camara a chance.

I have been reading in recent days about the problems with the K30. And I wonder where to start.
I guess I should have replaced the solenoid first and set the focus selector

I think I can find more interesting things inside

Please write if you have any tips on this case.
But please, no tips like "throw it away", i mean for now, before I even try, maybe later

---------------------------------
edit:
I will update progress of the project, in other color


Last edited by pentarad; 01-27-2021 at 10:17 AM. Reason: progress update
01-26-2021, 07:22 AM   #2
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Good luck, I hope it was very cheap. Sounds to me like the previous owner got in over his head and didn't get things back together properly. I have read that there was a way to put K-50 firmware on a K-30, presumably to use the PLM lens, but I have no idea if that can cause other problems, As someone who has had both cameras, they are very similar, from the size and body shape the "guts" were probably nearly identical. To continue your project I would go out and buy AA lithium batteries. They will provide the most power and last longest. Eneloops would work too, but you can get the lithiums abut anywhere. I have a feeling that when you open it you may see some things out of position a little. Hopefully he did break any parts that you cannot replace, it may be as simple as pinched cables or broken solder connections that are visible and fixable. Except for the aperture block problem the K-30 is a very reliable camera. I took a lot of photos with mine, I had the aperture block replaced under warranty, and while it was being repaired, I ended up buying aK-50 when the were really marked down.

Anyway, good luck, and take a lot of pictures to document the resurrection. I know there are documented solenoid replacements on this website, with photos and probably some videos here and on youtube.
01-26-2021, 09:16 AM   #3
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Thatís a great idea to work on. Long list indeed. But if you manage to get it resurrected you can give considerable feedback to other members. If the shutter is not gone, then almost everything has a solution. I admire your patience, Iím not that much into this game. Good luck with this. I hope you can share some photos of the Frankenstein camera soon.
01-26-2021, 11:31 AM   #4
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There may be other damage caused by the failed attempt which replacing the solenoid may not correct. Good luck. It sounds like you have your work cut out for you.

The K-50 firmware may have been hacked and installed on the K-30 as it is possible to do this.

01-26-2021, 11:39 AM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by ramseybuckeye Quote
Good luck, I hope it was very cheap.
hmm, I bought it with a kit lens and other stuff, for the price lower than I could buy this lens alone, so I think it was a bargain.

There is some progress in the project.
I just opened the case and took a look around, I don't see any broken cables, insede looks clean and OK,
I've cleand and reasembled the ribbon cable that goes to the selector dial, and it start to work as it should. along with the aperture and time dial. seams that issue is fixed

Lens screw-drive-mechanism moves up and down as it should after reassembling the focus switch,

Green solenoid was stuck, once unlocked, the wheels start move and the aperture lever were unlocked.

BUT, the mirror is still up so that the shutter does not fire when you try to take a picture (tests done afrer powering the camera)
I didn't try to force it to go down. I have no experience with this type of mechanisms. For now I have no idea how to fix it and I think if the shutter box is broken there will be no sense to replace it.

The other thing, when the kit lens is conected, I can change F with the dial (M). The numbers on the lcd are changing, but I can't see the reaction of the lens ( aperture is not changing).
Schould it change before taking the picture ( LV is off, if it is on lcd is black, becouse of the mirror up)

Additionally there is a terrible mess with the screws, they were put in random order, some loose, some super tight.
If any body has a list or a picture with propper placement I will be gratefull for sending the photo
01-26-2021, 02:33 PM - 1 Like   #6
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For the heck of it go to the menu and select sensor cleaning, mirror up, and maybe you can see if anything moves. Just another way to actuate the mirror.
01-26-2021, 02:50 PM   #7
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I have seen examples of camera bodies with a clock fitted to the mount opening.


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01-26-2021, 09:23 PM   #8
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I don't think any of the DIY videos or tutorials document which length screw goes where. These would be indicated on the exploded parts diagram and service parts list. This can be purchased from uscamera.com

01-27-2021, 12:41 AM   #9
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01-27-2021, 12:55 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ramseybuckeye Quote
For the heck of it go to the menu and select sensor cleaning, mirror up, and maybe you can see if anything moves. Just another way to actuate the mirror.
actually the mirror is UP, when I run the cleaning, I heard some buzzing from inside ( like small motor), but nothing moved.

I didn't replace solenoid yet, I'm still waiting for a donor.
can the dead solenoid somehow be related to the locked shutter and mirror or are they separate matters?
01-27-2021, 06:01 AM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentarad Quote
actually the mirror is UP, when I run the cleaning, I heard some buzzing from inside ( like small motor), but nothing moved.
Yes I know it's up, that just to see if you can see any action at the mirror. When you "run the cleaning" I'm guessing you are talking about dust removal which shakes the sensor and does make a buzzing noise. The mirror up for sensor cleaning is for manual cleaning and simply locks the mirror up. I thought engaging that may help complete a cycle. Once you do that the mirror normally drops back down when you turn the camera off. I don't know for sure, but I think the bad solenoid could definitely be causing that.
01-27-2021, 07:48 AM   #12
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I replaced the solenoid with one with MZ50, (it had the same polarity) and unfortunately no changes.
the mirror is still up and the diaphragm is closed. the camera took some black photos, but that's not much of a consolation.
on the left oryginal from MZ50 and on the right side "fixed" from K30
sorry for the bad quality
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01-27-2021, 09:30 AM - 2 Likes   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentarad Quote
Additionally there is a terrible mess with the screws, they were put in random order, some loose, some super tight.
If any body has a list or a picture with propper placement I will be gratefull for sending the photo
Thats why it is sensible to print a photo of each side of the body as recommended in the tuturial.

Anyway: That can be helped:
Length of screws in K30, K50 and K500 - PentaxForums.com
01-27-2021, 10:09 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by photogem Quote
Thats why it is sensible to print a photo of each side of the body as recommended in the tuturial.

Anyway: That can be helped:
Length of screws in K30, K50 and K500 - PentaxForums.com
Thank you very much!
You saved me a lot of time for this puzzle


photogem

I saw many of your posts, you have tremendous knowledge and want to share it!

Do you see any light in the tunnel in this case?
Maybe you have some tips on how to unlock the mirror and shutter?

I checked them with a toothpick, they can be moved slightly, but some kind of spring holds them
01-27-2021, 10:29 AM   #15
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I am afraid no, I never came across a stuck mirror in a Pentax DSLR body.
With analog bodies yes, but that is different.

The mirror up is done with the motor sitting next to the solenoid on the diaphragm-control-unit.

All are interlinked of course: shutter-curtain, exposure and aperture, mirror-up

What happened sometimes after filing was a mirror-flop

Your green solenoid has been filed/sanded by somebody in the most idiotic way!
The plunger is shortened. The person who sanded it down this way did not understand anything:
The holding force will remain the same.

But the pull on the lever it sits on is different.

So, no light in the tunnel but a tunnel in the light. It will most likely leed to more darkness.
Keep this Pentax for spare parts and maybe find another defunct one to do it proberly.
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