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09-13-2010, 01:57 PM   #1
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How to "refurb" a K1000

Since purchasing my gently used K20D, I've been scouring craigslist and ebay for deals and steals on lenses for it. A $5 Zx-5 w/zoom lens (I don't have a zoom yet!) barely escaped me, sadly. Then I stumbled across a K1000 w/50mm 1.7 lens for $30 (listed for $35, but I offered the guy $30). I don't know how feasible film is going to be for me, since my primary reason for getting the K20D is photographing my jewelry for my online store, and I don't particularly need another 50mm lens, but the K1000 looked so sad and neglected, I had to snatch it up from the terrible, heartless situation it was in. To give you an idea, there was a spiderweb inside the case, behind the lens when I opened it up. No spider - I get the impression it had been there for a long time. Years, maybe. The camera is completely functional, but the case has some cosmetic dings, and the lens is also completely functional, but has a dent on one edge where it was clearly dropped once. Luckily, the glass is clear (after a good cleaning), and nice and snappy.

So, I've given the camera and lens a good cleaning, but I think there's more to be done. Some of the seals are sticky, for instance. I had black stuff on the mirror I had to clean off - yuck! Whether I keep it or sell it to a good home, I'd still like to restore it as much as possible. The icky, dirty, dusty condition it came to me in is just sad and wrong. But I have no idea what to do beyond the cleaning I gave it (and that was all just me taking it apart and carefully wiping it down with lens cleaner and rubbing alcohol - I have no experience in properly cleaning a camera.)

So, here I am, asking for advice. What can I do about the sticky seals? What sort of "checklist" should I go through cleaning it up and refurbing it?

09-13-2010, 01:59 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by suliabryon Quote
Since purchasing my gently used K20D, I've been scouring craigslist and ebay for deals and steals on lenses for it. A $5 Zx-5 w/zoom lens (I don't have a zoom yet!) barely escaped me, sadly. Then I stumbled across a K1000 w/50mm 1.7 lens for $30 (listed for $35, but I offered the guy $30). I don't know how feasible film is going to be for me, since my primary reason for getting the K20D is photographing my jewelry for my online store, and I don't particularly need another 50mm lens, but the K1000 looked so sad and neglected, I had to snatch it up from the terrible, heartless situation it was in. To give you an idea, there was a spiderweb inside the case, behind the lens when I opened it up. No spider - I get the impression it had been there for a long time. Years, maybe. The camera is completely functional, but the case has some cosmetic dings, and the lens is also completely functional, but has a dent on one edge where it was clearly dropped once. Luckily, the glass is clear (after a good cleaning), and nice and snappy.

So, I've given the camera and lens a good cleaning, but I think there's more to be done. Some of the seals are sticky, for instance. I had black stuff on the mirror I had to clean off - yuck! Whether I keep it or sell it to a good home, I'd still like to restore it as much as possible. The icky, dirty, dusty condition it came to me in is just sad and wrong. But I have no idea what to do beyond the cleaning I gave it (and that was all just me taking it apart and carefully wiping it down with lens cleaner and rubbing alcohol - I have no experience in properly cleaning a camera.)

So, here I am, asking for advice. What can I do about the sticky seals? What sort of "checklist" should I go through cleaning it up and refurbing it?
For an emergency-wave-off: Don't touch the mirror yet!


Addng: Inside the film area, there are light seals which, especially if gummy, can be removed with some rubbing alcohol and bamboo kitchen-skewers: all that takes is patience. Replacement seal materials are available. You sound like you know enough about fixing things that you have no problems about daring or handling things (Just know that SLR mirrors are silvered on the *front,* so inappropriate solvents or abrasion there make them not-a-mirror-anymore. Delicate, even beyond the thinness of the glass.) Rubbing alcohol will work just fine around the film-door seals, though.


That lens alone is worth well more than 30 dollars, though, btw: not a *lot,* but some. The body sounds quite saveable, and we do have an expert servicer known to us here who could tend to things and assess condition of what you have, quite well. Who could likely assess and fix you up for less than an unknown quantity K1000 off the Net. That gummy bumper foam on the mirror, though, means might be best left to experts, (with reserve parts, if other things are wrong) unless you're *very* precise and patient. 'Eric' is someone with a solid rep here, that is trusted implicitly, and his fee is in this case, likely very worth it, compared to what that camera costs in any condition. (K1000s get inflated prices, for cultural reasons. I don't know if anyone here even *has* one cause the art students and their Moms used to buy them up so much. Nothing particularly wonderful about them, but they're good, solid machines, mostly) You're ahead on the lens: gummy seals are nothing. The mirror bumper foam melting is not an insurmountable problem at all, but delicate at best. So you could do worse than have that assessed.

Last edited by Ratmagiclady; 09-13-2010 at 02:16 PM.
09-13-2010, 02:39 PM   #3
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Go here and pick an article to read. "Pentax Spotmatic SP SLR" is very similar to K1000.

And buy this kit.

Last edited by SOldBear; 09-13-2010 at 05:08 PM.
09-13-2010, 03:46 PM   #4
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Too late on the mirror, but by some incredible stroke of luck, I did only use denatured alcohol on it, which is what the article linked here recommends. Phew! That would've been a very sad mistake, had I used something harsher. But rubbing alcohol generally strikes me as a safe, sanitary cleanser for delicate things.

Hmm, are there any pictures online, that anyone knows of, on where/how to take out the old seals and replace with new? I'm pretty okay with doing it myself, but having a good clear example to follow is always nice. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words! ;D

Barring that, perhaps the expert way is the way to go, although I do like fixing things up myself. I've opened up the innards of my espresso machine when I've had to, and I do enjoy taking something that's been sadly neglected and making it shine again. However, not at the risk of ruining it worse than it was before.

09-13-2010, 03:57 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by suliabryon Quote
...Hmm, are there any pictures online, that anyone knows of, on where/how to take out the old seals and replace with new?...
Buy the interslice kit (second link in comment above). Jon Goodman, the maker, generally includes complete instructions. You can also look at the Spotmatic instructions from Jon, available for download...
http://www.kyphoto.com/classics/seal/Pentax_SpotmaticSP.pdf
Repeat...Buy the interslice kit. It includes the special bamboo cleaning tool and plenty of materials pre-cut to the appropriate width. As someone who has cut his own strips from the foam sheets, I can definitely tell you that you will not find a better deal for $10.


Steve
09-13-2010, 04:00 PM   #6
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The two links given above show some nice instructions with pictures after you click on "Pentax Spotmatic SP SLR". Here's another person's take on an older Pentax camera, but I'd refer to the previous posters' links. Pentax
09-13-2010, 04:01 PM   #7
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BTW...Two rules of DIY camera repair:
  1. Do not touch the mirror (already broken...10 demerits)
  2. Do not touch the focus screen
Both are fragile and very easily scratched. If you value the camera, it is worth having a pro clean those surfaces if they are soiled beyond what a puff of air can dislodge.

Steve
09-13-2010, 04:25 PM   #8
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Wow, thanks guys. I'll check out those links. Um, I'm afraid I may be getting 10 more demerits! Maybe 20, after I ask this question: which part is the focusing screen? The other "inside" piece of glass besides the mirror? You know what, I'm going to go open my PDF of the manual and see what it says. I know I am betraying my complete ignorance here, but I have only just started learning about camera and photography. I'm still struggling with the concept of "aperture" after reading about it until my eyes glazed over.

I was very careful in my cleaning, if that wins me any points at all. A very light touch with a cotton swab and rubbing alcohol. But I should know better than to touch before I've asked the experts. I just couldn't stand to let it stay so dirty!

Oh, and I'm currently snapping a roll of film just to see how it does, and make sure everything works. I had to watch a youtube video on how to insert the film. The only camera I ever owned before my point-and-shoot digital was a Kodak "advantix" and you just popped the film in like a AA battery and went.

09-14-2010, 12:28 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by suliabryon Quote
I had to watch a youtube video on how to insert the film. The only camera I ever owned before my point-and-shoot digital was a Kodak "advantix" and you just popped the film in like a AA battery and went.
last spring I had to ask my mom how to load film as I had no idea. I didn't use a film camera for most of the summer, then the other day I loaded some film in another SLR and went to the local park to capture the beautiful sunset with my film camera. Also had taken it with me to a Phillies game and used maybe half a roll there.

went to get the film developed, and that's when I found out I didn't do a good job listening to my mom last spring. Loaded it wrong. all the pictures were lost :-(

downloaded the pdf manual and now i'm happily snapping away!
09-14-2010, 01:20 PM   #10
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You guys not familiar with loading film is probably about as backwards to me as loading film is to you. Having said that I realize I was lucky enough to grow up around cameras with my parents having a portrait studio and I could load film with my eyes shut. I also understand you have to start somewhere and with technology today I don't know anyone who will learn with film before digital, so it's nice to see you get excited about film.
09-14-2010, 01:32 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by builttospill Quote
You guys not familiar with loading film is probably about as backwards to me as loading film is to you. Having said that I realize I was lucky enough to grow up around cameras with my parents having a portrait studio and I could load film with my eyes shut. I also understand you have to start somewhere and with technology today I don't know anyone who will learn with film before digital, so it's nice to see you get excited about film.
Well, when I was a kid I used to use a vivitar film camera, but it came in some sort of cassette (110 film?) so it was easy to load.

yesterday I was so excited to get my bw flim developed that I just started shooting anything with no real rhyme or reason (such as, my bosses cars, the conference room at work, etc). I really just wish I knew how to develop my own film, but the costs seem prohibitive to me. not to mention the lack of space.
09-14-2010, 01:41 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by irishwhite Quote
yesterday I was so excited to get my bw flim developed that I just started shooting anything with no real rhyme or reason
That's funny. That's often how I get my best shots, photographing anything just to finish the last few pictures on the roll. Maybe you'll get some winners.
09-14-2010, 04:54 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
BTW...Two rules of DIY camera repair:
  1. Do not touch the mirror (already broken...10 demerits)
  2. Do not touch the focus screen
I would add:

3. Do not touch the shutter curtains

Of course these "don'ts" all apply to general handling as well as repair...

Chris
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