Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
07-18-2013, 06:27 PM   #1
New Member




Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7
Question for ME Super owners (current or past)

Hi all,

So I've recently gotten into photography with a K-30, but have also gotten my hands on my parents' ME Super. I'm trying to figure out right now if it's in working order or not. I haven't tried any film in it yet, and would prefer not to take the chance on wasting a roll of film and miss out on all those potential photos.

Right now, with the film unloaded, if I crank the film advance lever, sometimes it will catch (and the next attempt to crank it fails because it locks indicating its ready to take a shot) allowing the shutter release to fire the shutter. Most of the time, though, it doesn't catch, and will just keep cranking over and over, and the shutter release does nothing.

I was wondering if this behaviour is indicative of a problem (if so, any advice is appreciated). Or is this happening because I have no film loaded?

Any help would be very much appreciated.

07-18-2013, 07:53 PM   #2
Pentaxian




Join Date: May 2011
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,927
It's indicative of a problem.
07-18-2013, 08:11 PM   #3
New Member




Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7
Original Poster
Alright, thanks. I was pretty much figuring as much, but hoping I was wrong. Would you happen to know what problem, exactly?

Would it be what was discussed in this thread? When I first read that, the way its worded I thought it was different (it sounded like the shutter could have been released between winds in that case, but didn't have to be, whereas in my case the shutter won't release - the release button does nothing). After reading again, though, it's unclear to me which is the case.

I do know that the first curtain on the shutter mechanism is being raised when the wind lever is wound, without fail. Something just seems to be failing to catch to allow the shutter release to be readied to fire.
07-18-2013, 08:39 PM   #4
Veteran Member




Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: US
Photos: Albums
Posts: 357
QuoteOriginally posted by dracojames Quote
Hi all,

So I've recently gotten into photography with a K-30, but have also gotten my hands on my parents' ME Super. I'm trying to figure out right now if it's in working order or not. I haven't tried any film in it yet, and would prefer not to take the chance on wasting a roll of film and miss out on all those potential photos.

Right now, with the film unloaded, if I crank the film advance lever, sometimes it will catch (and the next attempt to crank it fails because it locks indicating its ready to take a shot) allowing the shutter release to fire the shutter. Most of the time, though, it doesn't catch, and will just keep cranking over and over, and the shutter release does nothing.

I was wondering if this behaviour is indicative of a problem (if so, any advice is appreciated). Or is this happening because I have no film loaded?

Any help would be very much appreciated.

Is rewind button (button on the bottom of camera) completely out and moves freely or jammed?

07-18-2013, 08:56 PM   #5
New Member




Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7
Original Poster
The rewind button is out fully, and I can easily push it in. It locks in place, and then releases the first time I wind the film advance lever.

I just spent another few minutes with the camera, listening and feeling very carefully to what's happening as I wind the film advance. The first time I do, there's a bit more resistance (as it raises the first shutter curtain, I assume). After that, it's easier (though it does have a spring-like resistance still). After a few times, though, just as I start to release it from the end of a full wind (pushed as far forward as it will go - lever tip pointing out to the right) I can hear a slight catch - it sounds like something is trying to catch, but then slips. The next couple times I wind it, the same thing happens, but is slightly louder each time. Then on the next wind, the catching sound is gone, and it's at this point that the camera actually engages the shutter release. The lever won't wind again, and pressing the shutter release will fire the shutter. Then the whole process starts over again.

So I'm guessing I have a bent catch in the mechanism somewhere - I just have no idea whether it would be under the top or bottom plate, nor really what part I'd need to be looking at if I get up the courage to try a bit of disassembly.
07-18-2013, 08:57 PM   #6
Veteran Member
hks_kansei's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 795
QuoteOriginally posted by dracojames Quote
(it sounded like the shutter could have been released between winds in that case, but didn't have to be, whereas in my case the shutter won't release - the release button does nothing). After reading again, though, it's unclear to me which is the case.
I doubt it's that, I've found that generally the shutter won't fire on anything less than a full cock, however I';ve got an ME, not an ME super (but I'm pretty sure the shutter mechanism etc is identical in them)


QuoteOriginally posted by pavpen Quote
Is rewind button (button on the bottom of camera) completely out and moves freely or jammed?
I'd suggest this as the first check.
07-18-2013, 09:06 PM   #7
New Member




Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7
Original Poster
Hey, thanks for the reply and advice. I think I must have posted while you were writing up your post. The rewind button seems to be working perfectly - it is easily pushed it, and releases again upon winding the film advance lever.
07-19-2013, 03:48 AM   #8
Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Michigan
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,072
A semi- non invasive check that an owner can do is to remove the batteries,
and remove the 3 tiny screws on the bottom plate with a jis screwdirver, working over a sheet of paper or a tray etc.
Careful, the visible black contact insulator with 3 holes will fall out.
Examine the mechanism at bottom of camera under the shutter button rod.
Watch while working the mech, you might might be able to identify an intermittent jam by caused aged lube or lack of use and flick it clear with a screwdriver.
You might be able to put a few drops of evaporating contact cleaner ( eg Radio Shack cleaner /lubricant) only in that lower mech.

If the jam is higher up in the body, that requires special tools and the service manual to take the top off, I decided not to go there.

07-19-2013, 01:09 PM   #9
Pentaxian
builttospill's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Utah, Idaho
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,642
Here's the service manual if you're mechanically inclined: http://www.pentax-manuals.com/manuals/service/me-s_sm.pdf

If you do perform surgery, it might be a good idea to document the process with photos to show others how to do this repair. Good luck.
07-19-2013, 01:33 PM   #10
New Member




Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7
Original Poster
Thanks for the advice. I've opened up the bottom cover to investigate - I can see that the wind lock (little black lever that snaps into place to keep the camera from winding again after the shutter's been cocked) isn't always moving into place. It did get more reliable as I worked the mechanism for a long time, so I think you're right about it being caused by old lube somewhere in the mechanism. Unfortunately, I think what I'm seeing is the symptom of a jam somewhere else rather than the actual cause (under the top plate, I'm guessing), which would mean serious disassembly if I understand correctly - it doesn't sound like getting into the top of the winding mechanism is particularly easy for someone without camera repair experience.

If I do decide to perform surgery on it though, I'll definitely document carefully - not only to show other people, but so that I can put things back together. Not sure if I'll do it, though, given how daunting much of that manual looks to me.
07-19-2013, 02:18 PM   #11
Veteran Member
demp10's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Atlanta
Photos: Albums
Posts: 602
I had the very same issue with my ME Super many years ago.

One way I found to almost consistently make it work was to crank it without film until it is was armed and I could trip the shutter. I inserted the film and advanced it to the first expose leaving the camera armed and ready to take a picture. After taking a picture always advance to the next frame and leave it armed.

It appeared that the vibrations of the mirror and shutter when taking a picture "helped" to successfully advance to the next frame and arm it. Most likely loose or warn gear that did not make good contact.
07-20-2013, 01:52 PM   #12
Senior Member




Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 207
One last thing, too: If not for this camera, then for the dozens that will come after it, go and buy the cheapest 24- or 36-exposure film you can find, write "Rubbish" on it with a Sharpie, and baptise it by starting to wind it through this camera in bright light. Everyone needs a rubbish test film sooner or later. This should cost you $3 or such. In a case like your ME Super with winding problems, eventually as you work on it you'll want to see that it works with film, and that it spaces frames properly. You can keep reusing the same film for similar purposes (always being careful not to suck the leader in when rewinding) unless and until you collect a camera that turns out to shred sprocket holes and then you'll have to bin that film. By then you will also have some camera with some fault that creates your next rubbish film roll unintentionally. My camera that did so by its back popping open mid-roll was ... a ME Super (SE variant).

--Dave
07-21-2013, 09:03 AM   #13
Veteran Member




Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Central Kentucky
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,415
If you should happen to rewind it too far, you can fish it back out with a small paper clip after spreading the slot a tiny bit. This would kill the first 2-3 exposures if not done in a darkroom; but hey it is the rubbish roll
07-23-2013, 06:21 AM   #14
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Sydney
Posts: 671
I've the same issue with my ME Super. It's caused by one of the leavers at the bottom being bent and out of place (if you search google you will find the info). It's caused by too forcefully pushing on the winding lever, which is exactly what I've done and bent mine. There are some diagrams on the net how to bend it back and get it working properly again. I've not done it yet, but my symptoms are exactly the same as yours.
07-23-2013, 08:22 PM   #15
New Member




Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7
Original Poster
Thanks to everyone who's posted for the advice. As it turns out, after working the mechanism many times (and opening the bottom plate to see if I could tell if anything was bent - the problem wasn't visible from there), the mechanism has actually gotten really reliable, to the point where every wind works. I think the issue was just some old grease had gummed up the works, and has now worked loose.

For a little while, it would only work on every wind if I cranked the lever all the way open and held it there for a second or two (allowing whatever lever was gummed up to move into place, I assume), but now it seems to be working just fine. I've put a roll of film in, and am just taking some shots (nothing really important to me in case there's something else wrong and I lose them). Once the 24 exposures are used I'll get it processed and see if everything's working. Then it'll be time to track down some nice black and white film and get shooting
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
film, release, shutter
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
For current/prospective D600 Owners cali92rs Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 3 04-06-2013 12:54 PM
Question for current & prior k20d owners harleynitelite Pentax DSLR Discussion 11 09-26-2012 07:52 AM
Quick question for owners of the Sigma EF-610 DG Super mattdm Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 3 11-01-2011 05:35 PM
Question for LX3/G11 (or similar) owners... joeyc Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 8 12-16-2009 06:56 AM
Question for Current or Former film shooting pro's MJB DIGITAL Pentax Film SLR Discussion 4 07-28-2009 01:59 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:51 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top