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12-27-2016, 03:53 AM   #1
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DA 40mm limited AF stuck

Hi everyone,

Yesterday I was about to use my DA 40mm when I found that the focus ring has seized up. It can be turned but requires a great deal of force to do so, much more than the AF motor can provide or than I am happy to do manually. This is regardless of whether it's on or off the camera.

Does anyone have any idea how this can be fixed or how difficult it is? I'm not very confident taking apart modern lenses and I know a place I could ask but I've never tried them and I don't want to spend a fortune on getting it done.

Many thanks

12-27-2016, 05:46 AM   #2
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I think broken gears could be to blame. I know Eric can fix these, but I'm not sure what else the repair entails.

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12-27-2016, 06:03 AM   #3
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Same thing happened to my DA40 limited a few years ago. It got sent off to Melbourne and came back as good as new. There must be a service centre in Spain somewhere.
12-27-2016, 06:29 AM   #4
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This exact same thing happened to my HD DA 40 Limited back in September. The problem occurred without any obvious signs of a developing issue about one week after the 1 year warranty expired. I just took it out of its pouch and noticed the focus ring was completely bound up, exactly same as yours. I did not try to see if it would work on my K-3. I sent it to Precision and they would not honor the warranty, but I had the New Leaf Extended warranty that I purchased with the lens from Adorama. it took two months to get the lens repaired but it was repaired under the extended warranty at no cost to me. The paper provided with the repaired lens indicated the focus ring was replaced. It is working fine now, but it seems from this, and responses to my post earlier when this occurred makes me think that there is a widespread defect issue with this lens.

12-27-2016, 02:15 PM   #5
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Geez Louise! I bought HD DA Ltd's to shoot with better quality glass and avoid dreaded SDM failures. Now I hear that in DA Ltd's the very basic screw drive technology that has been around for 35 years fails too. How common an issue is this? Has anyone mapped the failure rates?
12-27-2016, 06:16 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Saltwater Images Quote
Geez Louise! I bought HD DA Ltd's to shoot with better quality glass and avoid dreaded SDM failures. Now I hear that in DA Ltd's the very basic screw drive technology that has been around for 35 years fails too. How common an issue is this? Has anyone mapped the failure rates?
Unfortunately, if it moves, it can break. With the volume of lenses being made now ( by all manufacturers ), Quality Control can be an issue.
12-28-2016, 04:46 AM   #7
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The only common failure I was aware of (until now) with the DA limiteds is that some internal screws gradually come loose with continued use and the lens falls apart and has to be put back together. It hasn't happened with any of mine so far and I've been using them for years now.

I will look into an official service centre in Spain (or wait until I'm back in the UK) but I fear that might be significantly more expensive than the local place.
12-28-2016, 05:27 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Saltwater Images Quote
Geez Louise! I bought HD DA Ltd's to shoot with better quality glass and avoid dreaded SDM failures. Now I hear that in DA Ltd's the very basic screw drive technology that has been around for 35 years fails too. How common an issue is this? Has anyone mapped the failure rates?
I wouldn't be so pessimistic. I have shot with a DA 40 for years without problem. This is probably the number 2 or 3 prime in terms of sales that Pentax sells (behind DA 50 and DA 35 would be my guess). With so many copies in circulation, there is always a chance for failure, but certainly the rate is quite low compared to lenses with in lens motor. We certainly haven't seen threads like the SDM failure threads with the 16-50 and 50-135.

05-28-2017, 03:20 PM   #9
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DA 40 focus ring failure

I just had mine fail yesterday. But it's 11 years old, and it's been my workhorse. I would almost never leave home without it.

Now it's just a toss-up between getting it fixed or getting a brand new one. Depends on the price to fix, I suppose.
05-28-2017, 11:29 PM   #10
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I forgot to update this thread. My DA 40mm has been back from repair for a while now and works fine. In the end I got a quote from a place I know of but had never used and they fixed it for €45. I don't know how much work it took but that doesn't seem a bad price. I may go back and get quotes for my various cameras and lenses that need repairs or CLAs.
05-30-2017, 03:35 AM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by khardur Quote
I just had mine fail yesterday. But it's 11 years old, and it's been my workhorse. I would almost never leave home without it.

Now it's just a toss-up between getting it fixed or getting a brand new one. Depends on the price to fix, I suppose.
I posted earlier in this thread about my HD DA 40 Limited failing one week after the warranty expired. It is almost a year after the repair was completed by Precision under Adorama's New Leaf extended warranty. No issues with it since then. This is the only Pentax product I have that ever needed to be sent out for repair so I can't fault Pentax for unreliable products. At the same time I gave my son my older SMC DA 40 Limited which I bought used about 10 years ago and it survived drops, bumps and scrapes to the point where it looks like a disaster but it still works perfectly. You never know.
Good luck with your decision. I periodically look at KEH, the marketplace here, Adorama and B&H to see if there are any good used lenses available and did notice a few DA 40's out there. You may want to take a look if you decide against repairing yours. Of course, there is aways a new HD DA 40 option. BTW, before I realized I had the extended warranty, I sent an email to Eric describing my problem and responded that he did not know if he could fix it.
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