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01-11-2012, 01:30 PM   #1
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Pentax K2 light meter issues

Hi, I'm quite new to manual film cameras. I'm taking a university black and white photography class and my dad was nice enough to let me use his Pentax K2. It seems to be in great working order except the light meter. I gave my dad a call and he said to replace the battery as he probably hasn't changed them in about ten+ years. So I did but the black needle doesn't move (It's constantly pointing at 'auto' at the top above '1000'). Also I try pushing the battery check button but no light comes on. Before you ask, I am aware that the winding lever should be sticking out at about 15 degrees before partway depressing the shutter button to activate the light sensor. My dad said that the light meter was working last time he remembered using the camera so I'm not sure what the issue could be. If anyone could give me suggestions it would be much appreciated. Otherwise I'll have to invest in an external light meter for my class. Thanks in advance.

01-11-2012, 01:53 PM   #2
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It could be a number of problems, from a stuck galvanometer needle to corrosion somewhere in the path between the battery and the meter contacts, or decay inside ie old foam etc . Many cameras left unused for ten years end up not working. Best to get a CLA from someone like Eric or other reputable repair facility. That way you will not only get the meter repaired, but the rest of the camera up to snuff, including new seals and lubrication.
01-11-2012, 02:07 PM - 1 Like   #3
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Simple possible solutions - mistakes I have made with my own K2
  1. Use LR44 equivalent batteries (S76E replacement)
  2. with battery cover facing downward, load (2) LR44 batteries with the "+" sign facing up. The "+" will then contact the lead in the battery conmpartment when installed
  3. Using a pencil eraser, gently abrade the lead in the bottom of the battery compartment to remove oxidation and corrosion.
  4. Frequently the battery incdicator lamp or circuit has failed.
Otherwise send the camera to Eric Hendrickson for a complimentary, no obligation evaluation at Pentax Camera Service Eric is the go-to guy for film camera repairs and most highly regarded by members here. It will be a well-spent $70. Borrow a film camera while you wait.
01-18-2012, 03:34 AM   #4
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Sounds like a bad battery connection. The eraser stunt is worth trying. If the contact is poor because the battery had been kept in the camera, there could be corrosion from battery acid which is an expensive fix. In this day and age, it should be cheaper to buy a used K2 on ebay. Mind you, the K2 is a great camera- just about all the features one could ever want in a film SLR in a tough body. The K2 is mechanical shutter x-1/1000 + B, electronic for slower speeds. The 8 second shutter was only found on the more upmarket cameras back then. The great thing is all those old k-mount lenses can be picked up for next to nothing.

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