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07-25-2011, 05:34 PM   #1
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focusing screen and shims K5. Need help adjusting.

I installed a new Nikon K3 with AF indicators, grid and spit prism on my K5. It was purchased from focusingscreen.com. Its is amazing but using AF my camera locks perfect focus but split prism says its off by a lil. So when I manual focus, as soon as the prism lines up evenly, i take an slightly out of focus shot.
But by using my AF indicators at that point gets me a properly focused shot. So I know i'm supposed to use the shims to adjust how the screen shows accurate focus. I tried putting one in the front and back of the screen. I tried putting 4 shims in the front and back and no difference in focus line up. I have 4 shims and an odd shaped shim? What is that for? Any advice please.

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07-25-2011, 05:57 PM   #2
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Shims only go on ONE side!

They should be placed above the focusing screen between the viewfinder and the focusing screen to adjust the distance from the screen to the viewfinder. Placing some on each side just balances out the correction and makes no change.

Put one shim above the screen and test using the auto focus and also with live view. Keep adding shims until all three methods of focusing give you the same point of focus. The focusing screen only affects manual focus, not auto-focus.
07-25-2011, 06:19 PM   #3
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When i said in the front and the back, i meant 2 separate attempts. I will try again!
07-25-2011, 07:11 PM   #4
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I guess I need more shims! Its a lil better but not quite there!

07-25-2011, 08:12 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by mrjamesabels Quote
When i said in the front and the back, i meant 2 separate attempts. I will try again!
Sorry, did not mean to jump to conclusions.

I have used strips cut from a post-it note and strips of clear scotch tape to make up the distance on mine.

However, I believe focusing screen.com supplies the correct number of shims with each screen. Small variability in each camera of course but if you have all 4 in and it is still not there I start to wonder what is happening.

Is there a metal shim that was installed on the stock screen? I have a k-x, so I'm not familiar with the k-5, but on the k-x the metal shim had to be removed and replaced with the two plastic shims focusingscreen,com supplied.

Just checking, but are you sure you need more shims and not less? Particularly if the metal shim is still in place.
07-25-2011, 08:39 PM   #6
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That might be it. I will check it tomorrow. The instruction they give lack some details. Thanks.
07-25-2011, 11:01 PM   #7
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it is really rather simple:
if you use the split prism to focus something, and the plane in front of the object (closer to you) is sharp, but not the object itself, you need a THINNER shim than the copper colored one that is installed in your camera. I have the same problem.
if the plane behind the focussed object is sharp (further away from you), then you need a thicker shim (or some of the plastic ones).

I just found the plastic shims to be rather wobbly and hard to install correctly aligned, that I ordered a few shims from Pentax in various thickness's.
07-26-2011, 07:14 AM   #8
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I pulled out the metal shim and replaced with a plastic thinner shim. Wham! Its spot on now! Thanks for the advice.

07-26-2011, 07:25 AM   #9
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great

I decided to wait for my Pentax OEM shims...hope it won't take THAT long
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