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02-19-2014, 11:11 AM   #1
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My new old Pentax MX and its problems

Hey guys,

i recently got a Pentax MX with the M50/1,7 i bought for my Pentax K-x. I thought it would be nice to start learning the old-school way of photography to improve my skills for digital photography. And it's quite cool (hipsterish ).
Now after looking at the manual and my first steps, i had the famous problem with the sticky mirror foam, so I had to flip the mirror back by hand. That problem somehow solved itself, but now I got a new one: when I'm pressing the release, the mirror flips up veeeeery slow. Once it is up I can press the release again, the shutter does its job and the mirror flips back.
Now my question: what is going on there?

02-19-2014, 11:24 AM   #2
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You probably want to have it serviced. That MX is a gem and if you get new seals / CLA (clean lubricate adjust) it will last you another 20 years. And if you get Eric H to do the CLA it will actually hold its value when / if you go to sell it.
02-19-2014, 12:18 PM   #3
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Thanks for the quick answer!
I'm not sure if it's practical for me to send it to Eric H. to the US. I think I'll first check out if there's someone here in Iceland who can do a CLA. Just to know what's going on there, any idea what causes this mirror problem?
02-19-2014, 12:24 PM   #4
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If it hasn't been used in a while, and it sounds as if it hasn't, the old lubricants are beginning to gum up and dry up. Additionally, if the mirror foam has been bad for any time it may have begun to come apart and pieces fall into the works. A good cleaning should bring it back to normal.

02-19-2014, 12:30 PM   #5
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Sorry didn't know you were in iceland :-)

You can buy new seals/pads from ebay and other places and then have any local camera shop do the CLA part.

Jamey
02-19-2014, 12:44 PM   #6
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Bonjour,

My MX was just serviced by Eric Hendrickson and it's in the mail back to me (in France) ... cannot wait to get my hands back on it. I promised myself to do a lot more film this year, thus the CLA service. The reasonable priced CLA was $65.00 plus he put a part in for $7.00. He does free estimates before the work ... but there's a thread about his work that is totally positive.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/8-pentax-film-slr-discussion/105296-penta...ndrickson.html

Let us know what you do ... Salut, J
02-19-2014, 12:55 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Luppenko Quote
Thanks for the quick answer!
I'm not sure if it's practical for me to send it to Eric H. to the US. I think I'll first check out if there's someone here in Iceland who can do a CLA. Just to know what's going on there, any idea what causes this mirror problem?
The other one [people here seem to use is Robin at Harrow Technical in (I think) London, but that probably doesn't help you much either.
02-19-2014, 01:05 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pioneer Quote
If it hasn't been used in a while, and it sounds as if it hasn't, the old lubricants are beginning to gum up and dry up. Additionally, if the mirror foam has been bad for any time it may have begun to come apart and pieces fall into the works. A good cleaning should bring it back to normal.
Yeah, that's probably the reason. The guy who owned it before wasn't really carefull both the camera and the lens aren't in a really good shape...

If it works shipping it from France to the US it should work from here aswell, only the customs here is kind of weird and charged me VAT for it when i got it shipped here from Germany in the first place. I'll check if there's someone here who can do it and if not I'll send it to Eric

02-19-2014, 01:17 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Luppenko Quote
Yeah, that's probably the reason. The guy who owned it before wasn't really carefull both the camera and the lens aren't in a really good shape...

If it works shipping it from France to the US it should work from here aswell, only the customs here is kind of weird and charged me VAT for it when i got it shipped here from Germany in the first place. I'll check if there's someone here who can do it and if not I'll send it to Eric
Whatever you do ... never, never send through a carrier that has a platform in Germany ... has cause me troubles in the past. I shipped to Eric via the French Post Office with signature reception and insurance (they are bundled together) and Eric sent back via USPS (United States Postal Service), so I should not have a problem ... never with USPS and just got a PF marketplace purchase yesterday via Int'l Priority Mail la USPS; perfect it was ... J
02-19-2014, 03:22 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pioneer Quote
if the mirror foam has been bad for any time it may have begun to come apart and pieces fall into the works.
Yep. The foam gets gummy and working the shutter flings the mess into the works. Unless you have previous experience with camera repair, the cleaning is best done by a professional.


Steve
02-19-2014, 03:43 PM   #11
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Well worth it! If you're buying it from anywhere but a serious photographer or a camera shop, chances are it will need a CLA. It's always good to factor that into the price. Given that from camera shops, good MX's seem to go in the $120-$150 range, it's definitely worth it for a CLA. Also, like others have mentioned, it will hold its value if you decide to resell, especially to anyone on the forums that's familiar with the work Eric does.

QuoteOriginally posted by Jean Poitiers Quote
Bonjour,

My MX was just serviced by Eric Hendrickson and it's in the mail back to me (in France) ... cannot wait to get my hands back on it. I promised myself to do a lot more film this year, thus the CLA service. The reasonable priced CLA was $65.00 plus he put a part in for $7.00. He does free estimates before the work ... but there's a thread about his work that is totally positive.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/8-pentax-film-slr-discussion/105296-penta...ndrickson.html

Let us know what you do ... Salut, J
02-19-2014, 04:08 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by fretlessdavis Quote
Well worth it! If you're buying it from anywhere but a serious photographer or a camera shop, chances are it will need a CLA. It's always good to factor that into the price. Given that from camera shops, good MX's seem to go in the $120-$150 range, it's definitely worth it for a CLA. Also, like others have mentioned, it will hold its value if you decide to resell, especially to anyone on the forums that's familiar with the work Eric does.
I got it for 70 with the 50/1,7 lens (which I can use but where this small aparture contorl lever is missing), so I think it's totally worth to repair it
02-19-2014, 05:43 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by fretlessdavis Quote
Also, like others have mentioned, it will hold its value if you decide to resell, especially to anyone on the forums that's familiar with the work Eric does.
That is correct.
Just a few weeks ago I saw here at PF Marketplace a chrome MX & winder, freshly serviced by Eric.
I snapped them up post-haste, because I know the cost of and the extra value of Eric's work.

Last edited by Moe49; 03-16-2014 at 02:03 PM.
02-20-2014, 06:49 AM   #14
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Thank you all for the advice!
I could get the mirror back to work by myself (I just released the shutter a couple of times and flipped the mirror back manually at this little lever). Apparently the lubrication got sticky as some of you already assumed.
02-20-2014, 07:47 AM   #15
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My MX (and Spottie F) arrived this afternoon while I was home for lunch! They look great and will supply an image or two soon ... J

Last edited by Jean Poitiers; 02-21-2014 at 01:31 AM.
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