Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
01-01-2012, 09:19 AM   #1
New Member




Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 4
Spotmatic II viewfinder

I recently inherited my grandfather's Pentax Spotmatic II. My dad had been using it but not in the last 3 years or so. I currently use a Canon 60D but am familiar with the older film cameras from using a Kodak Retina that my dad gave me a long time ago. I read thru the manual for the Spotmatic and picked it up to take a oeek thru the viewfinder and nothing..... all black. Was guessing that the shutter was stuck but it's open and after changing settings and releasing the shutter, it seems to be adjusting from what I can see from the front of the lens. So why is the viewfinder dark...? Changed the battery so the light meter would be ready to roll and can't see anything, including the meter needle. Also, the switch for the light meter - should it click in to the on position and stay there? I can push the switch upward but it doesn't remain there, just returns to the lower position. I appreciate any advice/help, would really like to get this camera operational and check out the lenses.

01-01-2012, 09:55 AM   #2
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Eastern Kentucky
Posts: 416
Sounds like your mirror is stuck.
Jake
01-01-2012, 09:58 AM   #3
Veteran Member
kcobain1992's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,409
It sounds like the camera is jammed with the mirror stuck up, that would be a common fault and relatively easy to repair. Are you sure you know how to check that the shutter has completed cycle? The mirror should be resting at 45 degrees, and that should assure view through the viewfinder. If it is still black, it means something like the pentaprism or eyepiece glass is broken, but that is highly unlikely.
01-01-2012, 10:01 AM   #4
Banned




Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Savannah, U.S./Baguio City, P.H.
Posts: 5,979
if the mirror is stuck then just unscrew the lens, if the mirror is in the down position you'll see it. if its up you will just see the back of it (matte black painted) up against where the focusing screen would be. it sounds to me like the mirror is stuck in the up position. that's the only reason the viewfinder would be completely black. could be an easy fix with a replacement of the seals (something I would recommend regardless) or could require more work like that of a basic CLA. when the meter switch is working properly it will stay in the 'up' position until the shutter is depressed, (make sure you press it all the way up so that it 'clicks' into place) but if the mirror is stuck in the up position for any reason, then the switch will not stay in the up position because the meter is connected to the mirror mechanism. you said the shutter fires and advances normally? open the back of the camera, and watch the shutter. does it advance properly? does the advance lever advance after each depress of the shutter? my questioning is to determine wether the stuck mirror is due to just being stuck to the bumper or due to a failed shutter, as this can cause the mirror to not drop down, if the shutter doesn't go through a complete cycle.

would you mind removing the lens and taking a photo of the front of the camera for us to see? it would help to diagnose the problem.


Last edited by séamuis; 01-01-2012 at 10:30 AM.
01-01-2012, 12:26 PM   #5
New Member




Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 4
Original Poster
Thank you all, diagnosis appears correct. Removed lens and mirror is up against top of the camera and does not release despite a light prodding. Next is finding someone I can trust to hand it over to for repairs......
01-01-2012, 12:29 PM   #6
Pentaxian
Swift1's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Oregon
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,805
If your lens switch is set to "M" or Manual, and the aperture is set to f/16 or f/22, the viewfinder could seem nearly or all black depending on lighting conditions.

Edit: Just saw last reply after I was done typing.

If you are in North America, Eric Hendrickson @ www.pentaxs.com is the guy you need.
01-01-2012, 04:21 PM   #7
New Member




Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 4
Original Poster
Thanks for the info, sounds like he fits the bill for sure!
01-01-2012, 05:32 PM   #8
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Eastern Kentucky
Posts: 416
Spotmatic may not be worth the price of repair,might be cheaper to buy one.
Jake

01-01-2012, 05:36 PM   #9
New Member




Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 4
Original Poster
Don't think anything more than the stuck mirror is going on. Eric H has free estimates on repairs and avg spotmatic goes about 63.00. And the camera was my grandfather's so I'd like to have it working
01-01-2012, 09:56 PM   #10
Pentaxian
Swift1's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Oregon
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,805
A Spotmatic is definitely worth the cost of a CLA. Especially if it was your grandfathers. After a CLA it should be good for another $20+ years. That's about $3 a year.
01-01-2012, 10:44 PM   #11
Banned




Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Savannah, U.S./Baguio City, P.H.
Posts: 5,979
QuoteOriginally posted by Swift1 Quote
A Spotmatic is definitely worth the cost of a CLA. Especially if it was your grandfathers. After a CLA it should be good for another $20+ years. That's about $3 a year.
I agree with this. Especially if it has sentimental value. While you could likely get another spotmatic cheaper, you run the risk of that body having problems as well. The only sure way of getting an older camera like this in excellent condition, is to buy one that has already been CLA'd. But that will likely demand a premium that is more than it would cost you to get yours fixed. If you really plan on using the camera then the cost is worth it. And it's cheaper than the cost of film and development. But if you don't plan on actually using it, then it may not be worth the cost. You have to weigh your options, but the rule that most of us here ( and I'm sure Eric, our favorite technician is happy about) live by, is that a CLA should always be figured into the cost of acquiring an older film camera if you plan on using it. Even if it works now, that's no guarantee that your 30-40-50 year old camera will work tomorrow. A CLA is cheap in the long run and will virtually guarantee it will work likely longer than you ever plan on using it.

Last edited by séamuis; 01-02-2012 at 03:23 AM.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
dad, ii, meter, pentax help, position, shutter, spotmatic, spotmatic ii, switch, viewfinder
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Pentax Spotmatic II Ole Pentax Film SLR Discussion 1 12-03-2010 09:35 AM
Pentax Spotmatic IIa Ole Pentax Film SLR Discussion 0 09-18-2010 01:04 PM
ME Viewfinder slh Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 3 07-30-2010 03:09 PM
K200D viewfinder + Katzeye VS. K20D viewfinder dugrant153 Pentax DSLR Discussion 3 07-24-2009 11:36 AM
K200D Viewfinder vs K20D Viewfinder cputeq Pentax DSLR Discussion 7 06-15-2008 11:57 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 03:03 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top