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07-15-2019, 01:58 PM   #1
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Pentax MZ-5N broken mechanism of viewfinder mirror

Hello nice people of Pentax forum

I am reaching out to you since my beloved Pentax MZ-5N got broken and I do not wanna give it up. What I am searching for is help from you guys and whether any of you know where I might be able to get a spare part for fixing my issue.

So my issue basically is that the mirror that reflects image to viewfinder, and when shutter is pressed goes up, stays in the up position. And that is it!
Repair man told me this part is no longer available and that it is impossible to 3D print it, yet I have to try since I just love this camera

Thanks guys, any comments providing value are helpful!

07-15-2019, 02:05 PM - 1 Like   #2
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There should be threads here about fixing the issue, apparently the nylon gear breaks on these cameras causing the mirror to lock up. I think someone sourced a brass gear from somewhere to replace it.

Check here:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/8-pentax-film-slr-discussion/39450-mz5n-mirror-blocked-service-manual.html
07-16-2019, 05:46 AM   #3
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The problem with your MZ5N is well known, the nylon cog on the drive motor (Mirror lift) has fallen of and a new motor with a brass cog is needed, at this time I would think they are pretty rare, better to look for a replacement camera (Ebay) or go for a MZ3.
07-19-2019, 01:51 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Snappertim Quote
...better to look for a replacement camera (Ebay) or go for a MZ3.

Like all models in the series my MZ-3 had the notorious plastic gear, and it too broke.

Chris

07-19-2019, 07:42 PM   #5
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This was discussed in 2017 (Failed MZ-M: Plastic Gear Issue?) and apparently there are places in China that do it. Not something I did but as I have a camera w/the plastic gear (issue) I was interested.
07-22-2019, 08:58 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Vaga Quote
Hello nice people of Pentax forum

I am reaching out to you since my beloved Pentax MZ-5N got broken and I do not wanna give it up. What I am searching for is help from you guys and whether any of you know where I might be able to get a spare part for fixing my issue.

So my issue basically is that the mirror that reflects image to viewfinder, and when shutter is pressed goes up, stays in the up position. And that is it!
Repair man told me this part is no longer available and that it is impossible to 3D print it, yet I have to try since I just love this camera

Thanks guys, any comments providing value are helpful!
Vaga - I had the same problem with my ZX-5n, and naturally assumed it was the mirror gear problem. However, I sent it to a local repair shop and they found it was a different part that failed, and they were able to repair it. Now my ZX-5n works once again. So, my recommendation is not to conclude too quickly that it is the gear, just because the mirror stopped half-way up (which was my symptom). If you really love the camera otherwise, it might be worth a try to see if it can be repaired.

Good luck! --> Richard.
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07-23-2019, 09:58 AM   #7
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I had a problem with my MZ-M when I tried to use very flat AA batteries in the AA battery grip. The camera stopped mid cycle and and the mirror remained up. Pulling the mirror down with a finger tip (not recommended but I was desperate) resulted in it springing back up. I removed the batteries and started plans to trade it for spares, coming back to it a few days later I gave it one more chance. With fresh batteries it started to cycle and the mirror (although still a problem) would drop a few more degrees each time, it took 8-10 cycles for the mirror to drop fully down and it seemed to cycle OK after that with the mirror moving normally. Since then I have tested it (without film) and it always seems to cycle properly.

Quite what the problem was, how removing the batteries for a couple of days helped and why the mirror dropped in stages - I can't say (I remember some electro mechanical SLRs had reset switches on the baseplate).
07-23-2019, 12:07 PM - 1 Like   #8
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Thank you all good people of Pentax forum.

I followed OldChe's advice and went to a different repair centre, hoping they will fix my little fella .

Wish me luck!

08-14-2019, 07:00 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Vaga Quote
Thank you all good people of Pentax forum.

I followed OldChe's advice and went to a different repair centre, hoping they will fix my little fella .

Wish me luck!
Good luck! Let us know how it turns out.
08-15-2019, 04:05 AM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by OldChE Quote
Vaga - I had the same problem with my ZX-5n, and naturally assumed it was the mirror gear problem. However, I sent it to a local repair shop and they found it was a different part that failed, and they were able to repair it. Now my ZX-5n works once again. So, my recommendation is not to conclude too quickly that it is the gear, just because the mirror stopped half-way up (which was my symptom). If you really love the camera otherwise, it might be worth a try to see if it can be repaired.

Good luck! --> Richard.
I also discovered (after taking a 5N apart) that the gear wasn't the culprit for the problem, but the 5N is so complicated to dismantle I couldn't get it back together again so all the bits are in a plastic bag in case I want spares in the future. I won't be dismantling any of these cameras again as the gear that usually breaks is in the worst possible place for accessibility.

BTW I sourced replacement brass gear wheels from here: kkpmo - Zahnrad / Trieb M0.25 / 13 Zhne and I found the 2016 e-mail confirming the details, though I remember having great difficulty getting the gear wheel onto the motor axle (despite not being broken I tried to replace it anyway, as I'd already dismantled it).

Gearwheel Pinion M0.25 / 13teeth

material:brass MO58
gearweehl width (T) in mm:2,0
drill / hole (D) in mm:1,5

Four of these cost around 23 including postage.
08-15-2019, 08:46 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jonathan Mac Quote
I also discovered (after taking a 5N apart) that the gear wasn't the culprit for the problem, but the 5N is so complicated to dismantle I couldn't get it back together again so all the bits are in a plastic bag in case I want spares in the future. I won't be dismantling any of these cameras again as the gear that usually breaks is in the worst possible place for accessibility.

BTW I sourced replacement brass gear wheels from here: kkpmo - Zahnrad / Trieb M0.25 / 13 Zhne and I found the 2016 e-mail confirming the details, though I remember having great difficulty getting the gear wheel onto the motor axle (despite not being broken I tried to replace it anyway, as I'd already dismantled it).

Gearwheel Pinion M0.25 / 13teeth

material:brass MO58
gearweehl width (T) in mm:2,0
drill / hole (D) in mm:1,5

Four of these cost around 23 including postage.
Yes, I've read all the information I could find on this forum and elsewhere on how to do the repair, and it seems quite difficult. That's why I took a chance and sent mine out to a repair guy who said he may be able to fix it. He pretty much just charged me his typical CLA fee (about $65) and said he could fix it after inspection, it wasn't the gear but was a lever. Luckily it is still working, as is my ZX-L. And my MZ-S is still working too, which I understand may have the same type of gear.
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