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08-05-2022, 06:32 AM   #1
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*ist (film) Control dial stuck

Hi all,

I recently picked up an *ist, because why not try out the smallest ever film SLR? It was extremely cheap (especially in light of the frequent Japanese eBay listings in the $300 range) because the control dial only turns one way.

This seems like a fixable issue, and itís apparently not an uncommon one. The feeling I get is that the metal spring inside the dial has slipped, bent and is now catching on some part of the dialís underside. I can therefore adjust settings upward, but I can go at most one click in the other direction.

Iím currently trying to make heads/tails of the repair manual, but Iíve got a couple of questions just in case anyone had experience with it before.

- Is there any way to do it without removing the top plate? One of the user reviewers on the website says that they simply worked the dial back and forth until it loosened up, but I think thatíll be a bit risky with mine since it literally wonít budge counter-clockwise. Maybe Iím being overly cautious?

- One possible interpretation of the repair manual is that in order to remove the top plate, you have to remove the bottom and side plates first. Is this the case? Iíd really rather not do that!

Thanks a bunch!

08-06-2022, 06:20 AM   #2
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Isnít the auto110 Pentax smaller? And this 16mm camera: https://kosmofoto.com/2020/04/kmz-narciss-shooting-the-worlds-smallest-slr/
08-06-2022, 09:33 AM   #3
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I have an *ist with a broken shutter button, and my interpretation of the repair manual was same as yours... they seem to have built the top plate first, then assembled the rest of the camera around it...

I'll be excited if there's another way...

-Eric
08-06-2022, 11:50 AM   #4
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Pentax marketed the *ist film camera as the "world's smallest 35mm Auto-focus film SLR" So yes there are many smaller film cameras out there.

As for trying to open it up and repair it, as it's plastic you may end up regretting it....

Phil.

6 Days Ago   #5
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Hopefully you can repair your camera, because I really like my *ist.

Please keep us updated.
6 Days Ago   #6
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I feel like a fool. I have seen post after post referring to this camera. I assumed (ass of me only) that it was a camera nobody wanted to really refer to, hence the *. I finally
Googled it and found to my complete embarrassment, that *ist is an actual model name... 😳

Cue the laugh track..
6 Days Ago   #7
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It's a real pain to search for sometimes

But yeah, not Pentax' greatest moment when it came to names.

But it was probably better than MZ-5N Super...

It's a weird bird, though. Super compact and fairly capable, but something of an orphan based on when it was made.

-Eric

6 Days Ago   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sam_I_am Quote
I finally Googled it and found to my complete embarrassment, that *ist is an actual model name... 😳
No need to be embarrassed. It's a very strange camera name, although it is probably my favorite name from Pentax. It's their last film camera produced, and the * was meant to be a wildcard replaced by the user to their personality. For example if I loved the outdoors, I could replace the * with outdoor and my camera was the outdoorist, or photojournalist, or finalist, or any other word fitting the lifestyle.
6 Days Ago   #9
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Problem with this is......now I want one just to see it in person. Dilemma is that I am steering away from that era of slr due to the jelly bean like appearance across the board. Of course, my love is old cars, of pretty much any manufacturer, era, or genre....so if you can come up with an *ist that covers that....I might have to rethink my convictions. 😁
5 Days Ago   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sam_I_am Quote
Problem with this is......now I want one just to see it in person. Dilemma is that I am steering away from that era of slr due to the jelly bean like appearance across the board. Of course, my love is old cars, of pretty much any manufacturer, era, or genre....so if you can come up with an *ist that covers that....I might have to rethink my convictions. 😁
Don't do it Ö you'll love it Ö not only is it tiny but it's ridiculously lightweight Ö 335gm, (less than 12oz), and the "normal" 28-80mm FAJ kit lens is just another 180gm!
Mine never did get much use, I transitioned to digital due to loss of darkroom facility Ö maybe one day
5 Days Ago - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sam_I_am Quote
Problem with this is......now I want one just to see it in person.
They look much better in person than in photos. If you decide to get one make sure you find one with a battery grip so you can just use AA batteries instead of expensive batteries in the camera body.

Here's my *ist with its older sibling, the MZ-S (x2).
5 Days Ago - 1 Like   #12
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It really is tiny...

Here it is next to the Standard Reference Camera...
The K1000 isn't large, and the M 50mm f1.7 is one of the smaller lenses Pentax has made.

But the *ist is flat tiny...
Here it is with the DA40xs pancake, which I think is the smallest K-mount lens Pentax made (it's in the top 3 anyway).
And remember, the *ist has autofocus, autowind, depth of field preview (without the 'tiny tap' trick), a self timer, and a TTL flash that will control other flashes.





-Eric
5 Days Ago   #13
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Tiny it is.
4 Days Ago   #14
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Sorry I kind of disappeared there! I did manage to work the dial loose with some force and repetition. It's not totally normal yet, but it's getting there. That 40 XS is next on the list. I've got a couple of 40mm fixed lens rangefinders that definitely have more 'character' as a setup, but iffy meters 1/500 max shutter speeds are not always fun.
13 Hours Ago   #15
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Mine also has a problematic e-dial, and it's the same direction. Fortunately in my case it's not totally stuck, it's just very clunky. But the thing is, it sometimes is interpreted as the other direction by the camera. Rather than fixing this problem (cause I remember I saw a post for getting to the dial, you have to disassemble the entire camera), I'm looking for an alternative input so that I just don't bother with the dial anymore...
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