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04-08-2009, 01:42 PM   #1
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My flash won't close (*ist DS)

About a year ago I bought a Metz flash for my Pentax. Shortly after that I started having problems with the on-camera flash. Sometimes it wouldn't stay down. sometimes it wouldn't pop up even when the button was pressed. Now the flash won't stay down at all. Yes I even tried turning the camera off and removing the battery. the flash simply won't close.

I bought this camera about 4 years ago and since then the warranty has expired. I have no idea how much this would cost to fix. Being that I just bought a K20D I don't really have that much money to fix the flash. but it is annoying when I either have to hold the flash down while taking a picture, or leave the camera on the "no flash" setting which makes it impossible to select aperture/shutter speeds.

If I don't fix the flash the camera is pretty much worth nothing, but I have no idea what it would cost to fix it or if it would even be worth the value of the camera.

I could send it to Pentax and they could quote an estimate and if I refuse they'd send it back at their cost.

I'm worried that the Metz flash damaged the on board flash and that the same thing might happen to my K20d. Is this a risk I should worth taking or do you think it had nothing to do with the Metz??? by the way I have never dropped the camera or been abusive with it, I always take care of my equipment.

04-08-2009, 01:45 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by aweir Quote
I either have to hold the flash down while taking a picture, or leave the camera on the "no flash" setting which makes it impossible to select aperture/shutter speeds.
I don't understand this part. How are you prevented from selecting aperture or shutter speed?
04-08-2009, 01:48 PM   #3
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If the picture mode dial is set to "no flash" setting, I can't select Av, Tv, M, P, or B.

And there is no setting in the menu to turn off the flash, there's only an option for Auto flash, manual, auto/red eye, and Red eye manual.
04-08-2009, 02:56 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by aweir Quote
If the picture mode dial is set to "no flash" setting, I can't select Av, Tv, M, P, or B.

And there is no setting in the menu to turn off the flash, there's only an option for Auto flash, manual, auto/red eye, and Red eye manual.
The manual seems to imply that pressing the flash-up button (even if the flash is already up) will toggle the flash on and off. Have you tried that?

I don't have my *ist DL with me (I'm at work with only the K200D), but will experiment when I get home. It should be similar to the *ist DS...

edit: Even if I'm wrong, a small piece of duct tape would solve your problem. After all, that's what they make it for.....

04-08-2009, 03:12 PM   #5
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It's a known problem. I am having trouble with getting the flash up now with k20d. It also started after I began using an external Metz flash more extensively. I always manage in the end, but it takes several tries. Anyway, I'm not that worried about it, as I don't need it that often. I do not think that it has anything to do with Metz in particular. I believe that in general the on-board flash mechanism in Pentax is not built that well and probably there is a small spring or pin, that gets locked somewhere. Should be very easy to repair, if it bothers you.
04-08-2009, 03:15 PM   #6
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Pressing the flash button does nothing. I'd use Velcro tape instead of duct tape.
that way I could open/close it but then people would wonder what that tearing sound was.
04-08-2009, 03:17 PM   #7
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How could you say that the problem has nothing do with the Metz!? My problem started AFTER I started using the Metz, and your problem began after you started using the Metz, too.

No correlation?????
04-08-2009, 03:52 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Urmas R. Quote
It's a known problem. I am having trouble with getting the flash up now with k20d.
You know, they have little blue pills for that now...

04-08-2009, 03:56 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by aweir Quote
Pressing the flash button does nothing. I'd use Velcro tape instead of duct tape.
that way I could open/close it but then people would wonder what that tearing sound was.
Another option would be a small magnet glued in place. But it think it would be better to find the root cause and fix it properly. Unless you want to spend absolutely no money on it.
04-08-2009, 05:28 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by OregonJim Quote
You know, they have little blue pills for that now...
Funny! I like it!
04-08-2009, 09:50 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by aweir Quote
If the picture mode dial is set to "no flash" setting, I can't select Av, Tv, M, P, or B.

And there is no setting in the menu to turn off the flash, there's only an option for Auto flash, manual, auto/red eye, and Red eye manual.
I rarely use my popup flash and have it set to Manual. The camera seems to ignore its existence unless I press the Flash Up button. If choosing Manual doesn't work, maybe your Flash Up button is stuck.
04-09-2009, 09:05 AM   #12
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QuoteQuote:
You know, they have little blue pills for that now...
Damn, I though my camera is still in his best age!


QuoteQuote:
How could you say that the problem has nothing do with the Metz!?
You appear to be correct mate. I have asked around my Nikon/Canon friends and found also several discussions in the internet. There is supposedly some switch in the hot shoe, which tells, whether the external flash is attached or not. If that pin gets stuck, it sends an electronic signal, inactivating the pop up flash button. There are several reports with Canon and Sigma flashes causing the problem as well. So in principle we could clean the hot shoe and try to find the pin. I'm still at work now (stuck with Leicas here ;-) and cannot check, how the Pentax hot shoe looks like. You can check the following thread and the links therein:

Flickr: Discussing 40D built in flash does'nt pop up in Canon EOS 40D Users

Location of external flash detection switch on Canon XT/350D on Flickr - Photo Sharing!
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