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07-16-2011, 08:38 AM   #1
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is this lens fungus?

Sorry to post another thread about lens fungus (I read several of those already) but I just want to be sure. I bought a Pentax-A 1:2.8 28mm lens from eBay ($50) for my Pentax K-X and received it yesterday. The lens seems to be working fine, but then I notice some marks in the lens that I think it may be fungus (see attached pictures). What do you think? Do you recommend to try to clean the leans or just try to return it to the seller (the seller does not accept returns, but I could try to fight for it). Thanks

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07-16-2011, 09:08 AM   #2
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Definitely, fungus.
07-16-2011, 10:41 AM   #3
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Fungus is clearly the seller's fault somehow. At the very least, they didn't really look at the lens or know anything about selling. Of course, lenses without fungus are easier to sell for high prices. Part of the risk of getting the lens for half price is buying from iffy sellers. You should have a case for a refund.

I opted for cleaning myself and learned exciting new skills. It should be possible, but you have to decide how much trouble you want to go to. I know I've fixed two of these lenses, but I've forgotten exactly how they go together and can only make general suggestions.
07-17-2011, 09:10 AM   #4
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It Is fungus, it Can be cleaned if you want to take the lens apart to do it. These are pretty simple to disassemble as long as you're careful. You first need to remove the front retaining ring and the rest should be pretty obvious. Hint. The glass can all be removed without taking the lens body apart. Just make sure you put it back together in the proper manner.



07-17-2011, 09:22 AM   #5
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Options:
  • Contact seller, ask for partial refund, clean the lens yourself.
  • Contact seller, request return. If seller refuses, open dispute a resolution with ebaY.
07-17-2011, 12:33 PM   #6
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Thank you for all your responses. I contacted the seller and she agreed to take the lens back. However, now I am thinking if I should return it or try to clean it myself. I have seen that this lens is being sold for higher prices on eBay than what I paid ($50), so it could be cheaper for me to try to clean it (if it is easy and the seller agrees for a partial refund).

JeffJS: What tool should I use to remove the front retaining ring? What should I use to clean it?

Thanks
07-17-2011, 01:14 PM   #7
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This is pretty generic but may give you some idea of maybe how to get the lens apart. Shooting with a Pentax K10D: May 2011
07-17-2011, 03:14 PM   #8
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The retaining ring is around the front element. I think it unscrews via the filter threads. Some cheaper A series lenses have a ring that just pops off, so look for that too. There's an official tool but it's just a rubber ring that uses friction to turn the ring on the lens. With some improvisation, a lot of stuff around the house can be used instead. A chair leg protector might work. The link above suggests a sink basin cap. It just has to fit the ring, grip it and not touch the glass. Behind this ring there should be screws holding on the filter ring and slots for unscrewing the lens assembly.

The lens has 7 elements. The front three are in one assembly that threads into the lens body. Then there's the aperture and the other 4 elements. Most of the time, the fungus is on one of the glass surfaces on either side of the aperture blades. It's tough to tell without some exploration. I'd remove the group of the front three elements first and inspect them. You can usually open the aperture blades and access the glass surface on the other side of the blades well enough to clean it.

On my F series version of this lens, the rear elements don't come out in a group. I can remove the tiny screws under the bayonet lugs - one next to the red alignment dot, the others 120 degrees apart, and a fourth screw closest to the aperture lever that you don't need to remove. Then slide off the light shield and get a good grip on the ring around the rearmost element. Unscrew that ring and that element comes out. That's the next most likely set of surfaces.

You may run into trouble or something not mentioned here. I often set up a camera on a tripod and photograph my workspace, to document my steps. Post photos here and I can probably give you more advice.

07-18-2011, 01:48 PM   #9
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I think I will give it a try and clean the lens. I am now figuring out what kind of tools should I have. Based on what I read in this site, I will need to get a spanner wrench. How likely is that I will need it? They seems to be a little pricey (~$50 in Amazon) and I am not sure if I want to invest so much money in such tool. Do you now of other cheaper alternatives (I saw this one for $15 but I am not sure if it will be good)? Thanks
07-18-2011, 03:53 PM   #10
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If you can get hold of a copy of this book, there is a section on what tools you may require and how to make them. You can read browse through it on Amazon.
Camera maintenance & repair - Google Books
07-18-2011, 09:18 PM   #11
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The exact right tool is always nice. I tend to hack my way along. If I had known in advance how many times I'd use them, I probably would have bought real ones.
07-30-2011, 08:06 PM   #12
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Finally I found some time to try to clean the lens. While I was able to take two of the front elements (see picture), the fungus seems to be in the third one!. However, I don't know how to take out the third element. I have been trying to unscrew the retaining ring on the lens front without success (actually, I am not sure if that can be unscrew at all). I have seems instructions online on how to disassemble other lenses but none regarding this exact lens. I will appreciate any recommendations on what to do next (should I try disassembling the rear elements?). Thanks
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07-30-2011, 08:42 PM   #13
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Someone posted in the net before, this is the video clip showing step by step cleaning on the 50mm f1.4, hopefully it can help in your cleaning process.

07-31-2011, 09:48 AM   #14
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Ok, after a some patience and improvisation I managed to unscrew the front retaining ring. After that, it was easy to access the third element. I also took out the rear elements. I clean them all and put them back. So far it seems that is working fine. I took some pictures of the process and will create a thread describing it. Overall, it was not as bad as I thought (however, having the right tools would have helped a lot).
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