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03-25-2012, 10:27 AM   #16
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I figure if the Eclipse cleaner doesn't ruin the screen, it is methanol which is a stronger solvent than lighter fluid is. This should mean that one can use lighter fluid (naphta) too.

03-25-2012, 02:57 PM   #17
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I recently received my ME Super.

I had a small dot close to the split screen and I attempted to blow the white bit with a blower: with the first blow I crumbled half of the mirror bumper on the focusing screen. Yuppee.
In the attempt to remove all the black bits with a very soft brush I noticed these were leaving black smears of tar/glue, and the viewfinder became unusable. Seriously. Black marks all over, including microprisma and split screen.

I used the following technique, I worked with adhesives before and I know that the best product to clean glue is... glue.
I used strips of sellotape (proper one, not cheap stuff!) and I stuck them gently on the focusing screen, and then gently took them off. Obviously one by one, single use.
Now the screen is much better than it was before, even better than when I first got the camera. Still with few tiny marks here and there, but it is usable. when I get a spare body (and sure I will) I will send the ME Super for a deserved service and specifically ask for the screen to be cleaned.
I read for days in the search of a proper method, in a shop in Brighton they told me lighter fluid too, but I didn't feel like trying and risking to have a long awaited but unusable camera.

This is how I did because I knew what made it dirty, obviously if you want to attempt the same way it will be your responsibility ; ) <- the wink emoticon was pretty ugly....

Good luck!
04-01-2012, 10:10 AM   #18
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Cleannig MX Focusing screen

QuoteOriginally posted by kcobain1992 Quote
Hi, I have found contradictory advice on the net regarding this subject, so I will try to explain my situation clearly. I have an MX which has a viewfinder not overly dirty, but nevertheless I would like it to be spotless (it's not scratched yet, just has some black marks here and there). I'm planning to clean it myself using the following procedure, and I'd love to hear opinions about it before doing any silly thing again:
- with a pair of gloves and tweezers, take the screen out and put it on a clean dish.
- take a blower and get the dirt off it, also blow in the MX pentaprism which might be as well dirty
- either immerse the screen in lighter fluid, or clean it with lighter fluid on a cotton bud (which one is better? will I ruin the screen?)
- at the end, remove any cotton lint with the brush end of a lenspen.
On a side note, where can I find shims for the Pentax MX? With the SMC-M 28mm, it's not showing exactly infinity when it should, so I think it's slightly front-focusing.
Lighter fluid might not be a good idea unless somebody informs from his own experience about the results covering several years after using such solvent. Naphta (ronsonol) may affect the plastic material the screen is made of. Fro MY expwerience during several years I can tell that the best way I found to clean a screen especialy to take off the gue from decomposing mirror bump foam particles is GOO GONE (not goof off) that in my experience does not affect the material the screen is made of. You shouls be very careful nor to touch the screen with anything hard, rinse the GOO OFF with plenty water and mild soap after finishing.and let it air dry. From my days in the film lab I coul also advise te use of a last flush with distilled (battery) water to flush out any soluble solids that may be in the tap water and may show up after drying..
04-03-2012, 09:56 PM   #19
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When installing my Katzeye screen in my K20D I got so much dust on it I took it back out and wiped it with microfiber. Since the microprism and surface of it shreds micro fiber and holds it I then had to clean off the micro fiber, I just wiped it with some zeiss pre wetted lens cleaning wipes from walmart. No scratches, no issues. Your results may vary. I did also buy a large rocket blower and some synthetic foam makeup applicators and some lens cleaning fluid for future cleanings as there are still a few tiny dust or lint spots that move or get replaced with other dust whenever I try to get them.

04-03-2012, 10:41 PM - 2 Likes   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by kcobain1992 Quote
Hi, I have found contradictory advice on the net regarding this subject, so I will try to explain my situation clearly. I have an MX which has a viewfinder not overly dirty, but nevertheless I would like it to be spotless (it's not scratched yet, just has some black marks here and there). I'm planning to clean it myself using the following procedure, and I'd love to hear opinions about it before doing any silly thing again:
- with a pair of gloves and tweezers, take the screen out and put it on a clean dish.
- take a blower and get the dirt off it, also blow in the MX pentaprism which might be as well dirty
- either immerse the screen in lighter fluid, or clean it with lighter fluid on a cotton bud (which one is better? will I ruin the screen?)
- at the end, remove any cotton lint with the brush end of a lenspen.
Hello kcobain1992,

I don't know if the MX focusing screen is anything like the K100/200/20/5 but if it is, I may have some information that could prove useful to share.

The first thing I'd point-out is that should may be better off not touching your focusing screen with anything other than water and air. As I've tried cleaning screens in the past using various things and found that it always ended-up making things worst by introducing small scratches and/or etching the delicate freznel pattern and so I just stopped doing that.

Having said that, I've clean(washed) alot of screens over the years and so I'm going to share my own technique which has proven to make squeaky clean, like new screens every-time. But first, you're going to have to gather a few things together to do it.

The first thing I'd recommend is getting some surgical or sterilized latex gloves. I usually buy a box at the pharmacy every year or so since I do alot of sensitive work with old lenses, focusing screen installs and camera cleaning. And so there very handy to have.

The second thing you're going to need are some foam cups.

The third thing you're going to need is some distilled water and mild dish soap.

The fourth thing you'll need is a new roll of toilet paper(bare with me).

And finally, a blow-dryer

Having all these things, you are now ready to wash your screen. And the process is quite simple. You first setup three foam cups and fill each one with distilled water. However, you will add, a few drops of dish liquid to the first of them. The other two should be filled with clean water only.

The next step is for you to place(soak) the screen in the first glass. This is usually enough to degrease and rid most screens of debris etc. But in some cases, I've found it necessary to swish the screen around with my finger. Which is usually fine since the foam will be soft enough not to damage the screen.

Having cleaned the screen(examine under a light) you can proceed to rinsing. This is where you will use the second and third cup of distilled water. The second will be your pre-rinse which will absorb much of the soap, wheres the third is usually sufficient to clear the remaining residue off the screen.

Next comes the hard part. Screens(as you may have noticed) are notorious for streaking. And so it is necessary to remove all of the water from the screen before it dries, otherwise, you're going to end-up with streaks and water colors(prismatic) on your screen. And so this is where the toilet paper roll and blow driver come into play:

The idea here is to blow the water off the screen and absorb it onto the edge of the toilet paper(not the face but the end). This way the toilet paper will absorb the beads of water before they can dry while the blow drier forces the water off the screen. And though I know this may sound a little tedious or risky, it works quite well. Though I'd caution to hold your screen(very well) by the edges in one hand, while you blow(cold air) on the screen with the other. The toilet paper roll should be standing in front of you, and so you can dab the screen edge(or corner) on it as the water droplets are pushed away.

And there you have it. This is my screen washing technique which I've devised over the years of handling and washing screens. Which I'd add works very well btw. If not the best systems I've used to date.

PS. I've been meaning to make an image tutorial of this for the longest time but I just can't seem to get around to it.

Hope this helps.
JohnBee
11-28-2012, 12:46 PM   #21
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Resurrecting this old thread: more questions.

So, I have dust and "lint" spots on my focusing screen; well, I think it is on the focusing screen.
I followed many thread on the subject here. I don't have the guts to take the screen out just in case I make things worse.
And even bought one of those "Rocket blower" and the darn things are still there.

Before I get into the business to have the camera sent for cleaning, what is the best way to take a pic of what I see through the viewfinder? so that I can post it here.

These dirt "spots" do not affect my images .... just annoying when I look into the viewfinder.

Thanks!

JP
12-03-2012, 08:31 AM   #22
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Fugedaboudit!

It doesn't affect the image quality!
12-03-2012, 09:37 AM   #23
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jpzk: If it's still there after you use the rocket blower in the chamber, it's probably on the top of the screen. If it's a user-interchangeable screen, you could carefully pop it out according to the instructions in the manual and hit it with air from the rocket blower. (I've cleaned interchangeable screens more times than I can count without incident.) If it's not interchangeable, I'd just try to live with it.

If you do decide to remove the screen, use latex gloves & only touch it by the edges. You don't want to get skin oil on it.

Good luck,
Bobbo :-)

12-03-2012, 09:48 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
Before I get into the business to have the camera sent for cleaning, what is the best way to take a pic of what I see through the viewfinder? so that I can post it here. These dirt "spots" do not affect my images .... just annoying when I look into the viewfinder.
JP
If the dust spots look sharp and well defined they are on top of the focusing screen or on the prism. If less distinct they are on the underside. Even though such things don't affect the image, I insist on a clean finder as it is distracting. I've pulled the prism on a lot of old film cameras to eliminate such dust. A blower is best, as the plastic is very soft and easy to damage.

Often a camera phone can be held against the eyepiece and get a good picture of the finder view.
12-03-2012, 11:07 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by puderse Quote
Fugedaboudit!

It doesn't affect the image quality!
Yeah, sure ... as if I didn't know that it doesn't affect the images but it sure is annoying to see all those "specs" when you look through the viewfinder.
12-03-2012, 11:12 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by GibbyTheMole Quote
jpzk: If it's still there after you use the rocket blower in the chamber, it's probably on the top of the screen. If it's a user-interchangeable screen, you could carefully pop it out according to the instructions in the manual and hit it with air from the rocket blower. (I've cleaned interchangeable screens more times than I can count without incident.) If it's not interchangeable, I'd just try to live with it.

If you do decide to remove the screen, use latex gloves & only touch it by the edges. You don't want to get skin oil on it.

Good luck,
Bobbo :-)
Thanks !

Yep: still there after the rocket blower "hit", and then some ! What started with a couple of dirt spots ended up with more spots.

Typical K5 screen: user-interchangeable.
For now, I'll try first just to "unsnap" it without removing it and give it a gentle hit with the blower.

Hopefully, this won't end up in the prism.

JP
12-03-2012, 11:16 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by TomB_tx Quote
If the dust spots look sharp and well defined they are on top of the focusing screen or on the prism. If less distinct they are on the underside. Even though such things don't affect the image, I insist on a clean finder as it is distracting. I've pulled the prism on a lot of old film cameras to eliminate such dust. A blower is best, as the plastic is very soft and easy to damage.

Often a camera phone can be held against the eyepiece and get a good picture of the finder view.
Thanks for the hints, Tom.

Seems like it would be at the top then ... quite well defined small dark bits and one very annoying tiny "thread-like" thing. Looks like a piece of lint of some sort, but very small.

I'll try to take a pic of this mess with my phone.

JP
12-03-2012, 11:59 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
Thanks for the hints, Tom.

Seems like it would be at the top then ... quite well defined small dark bits and one very annoying tiny "thread-like" thing. Looks like a piece of lint of some sort, but very small.

I'll try to take a pic of this mess with my phone.

JP
Update with a "terrible" photo of the viewfinder "view" with the spots.
There are many more smaller spots which are not seen here on this pic:

Last edited by jpzk; 01-15-2013 at 07:58 PM.
12-04-2012, 05:22 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
For now, I'll try first just to "unsnap" it without removing it and give it a gentle hit with the blower.
If you unsnap it, you will want to completely remove it to clean it. If you don't, the air could knock the screen around the chamber and damage it. Screens are very easy to scratch. Just hold it by the edges & blast away with the air & you'll be ok. Plus, if you remove the screen, you won't be blowing crud into the prism.
12-04-2012, 05:24 PM   #30
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Short answer: If you have to ask, don't try it.
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