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02-14-2009, 11:11 PM   #1
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How many K1000's are there??

I used a K1000 in college (spring '78) but gave it away in the 80's. Now, many years later I went on E-bay to get one.
There are supposed to be 3 versions - made and assembled in Japan, Made in Japan and assembled in Hong Kong, and made in China.

Here is what I have:
1-Engraved on back of top cover: Asahi Optical Co.Japan with serial # on top cover
2- engraved on bottom: Assembled in Hong Kong with serial #on bottom
3 - Sticker on bottom - assembled in Hong Kong w/ serial # on bottom
4 - Made in China plastic.
AND
5 - I have seen them on e-bay with a Japan sticker and serial # on bottom

Most of those with stickers - have lost the stickers and these make up the majority of what is out there - metal w/ serial # on bottom.

Can anyone add to this with additional info??

02-14-2009, 11:58 PM   #2
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The weight decreased over the years. The original weighs 620 grams and the final version weighs 525 grams. That's without lens, film, batteries or strap. You'll rarely find the weight listed in an auction but a lot of sellers have a scale for postage. If they don't want to answer, there's always another auction.
02-15-2009, 07:52 AM   #3
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I can confirm the Japan sticker and serial number on the bottom. My father has a K1000, purchased in June 1977, that does not have the Japan engraving on the back but the date of purchase solidly places it as a "made in Japan" model.
02-15-2009, 08:55 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by CSSLDR Quote
Can anyone add to this with additional info??
I basically asked the same question 7 months ago. Really got no satisfactory answer except from sťamuis who said
QuoteQuote:
...but who knows what kind of variables there were during production.
Here is the thread: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-film-slr-discussion/33404-k1000-version.html

02-15-2009, 08:56 AM   #5
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I haven’t found a definitive guide for determining the age of a K1000. I’ve read of the change to the top plate late in the run that eliminated the Asahi name from above the Pentax name above the lens mount but I’ve never seen one of these cameras. My Hove Collectors’ Guide by Danilo Cecchi includes an image from a full line brochure showing the K2, KX, KM and K1000 with the latter having both the Asahi name and AOCo logo on the prism housing. A page in the K-family chapter includes two images of a K1000 with no date reference with the same prism housing but no stickers. I also have an HPBooks Pentax SLR guide from about 1987 which shows a very similar K1000.

I bought my K1000 in January 1987 in the form of a kit from a department store which included an M50/2 and a store branded Kiron 135/2.8 which is really nice. My camera is just as stated above so combined with the M50 lens it must have been part of a bulk of unsold cameras from a few years before. It has ASAHI OPT. CO. stamped in the back of the top plate to the right of the viewfinder. It has the serial number (7817712) stamped in the bottom plate to the left of the lens mount when holding the camera lens mount upward. Finally, it had, I believe, a yellow sticker on the bottom plate but I don’t remember what it was. It fell off sometime in the early-1990s.

I wouldn’t mind seeing where my K1000 falls in the production run. My guess would be 1985. I remember seeing K1000’s packaged with A50/2 lenses during the early-1990s which seemed odd.
02-15-2009, 11:08 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by B Grace Quote
I havenít found a definitive guide for determining the age of a K1000. Iíve read of the change to the top plate late in the run that eliminated the Asahi name from above the Pentax name above the lens mount but Iíve never seen one of these cameras...
Here is one I sold a couple of years ago. The battery cover on these newer ones are also a lot different, with a little bayonet instead of threads. I suspect the AOCo logo disappeared because the top and bottom plates were made of plastic. I don't know if the lens was original to the camera, but it is a late production M50/2 made in Taiwan. The older ones would say Japan on the name ring in front.



02-15-2009, 01:01 PM   #7
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I have four. I think they have sold millions and for an extended period of time. I like my Spotmatic SPII also; as well as my Nikon F
02-15-2009, 01:46 PM   #8
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I am proposing that we develop a database of our K1000's to see if a pattern develops regarding serial numbers and features/build parameters:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-film-slr-discussion/51190-k1000-se...-database.html

02-15-2009, 03:08 PM   #9
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The non-Asahi K1000s were, as best as I can tell, introduced circa 1991 when production moved to mainland China. I've held a few, and they don't feel as nice as the Hong Kong or (especially) Japanese production models. That doesn't mean that they're bad cameras, of course

And to confuse matters even more, there is also the K1000 SE, which is just the K1000 with a super-useful split image with microprism collar focusing screen. The SE came in two versions. The earlier version has brown leatherette and the later version has the same black leatherette as a normal K1000. Nobody (as far as I know) knows the dates of production for any version of the K1000 SE. I do know, however, that the brown ones were made in Hong Kong and are stickered as such (I have one, and it's a nice little camera.)
02-15-2009, 04:05 PM   #10
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K 1000's

Thanks for all the replies.
Right now on E-bay there 2 engraved Japan versions ,
AND there are 2 with serial #'s on top but it's only engraved Asahi Optical, Co.
These must be the ones with the Japan stickers.

I think it's safe to say there was a transitional "made in Japan" version before the Hong Kong assembly ramped up.
02-15-2009, 07:25 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by CSSLDR Quote
Thanks for all the replies.
Right now on E-bay there 2 engraved Japan versions ,
AND there are 2 with serial #'s on top but it's only engraved Asahi Optical, Co.
These must be the ones with the Japan stickers.

I think it's safe to say there was a transitional "made in Japan" version before the Hong Kong assembly ramped up.
Definitely there had to be transitional models: one to transition to the bottom serial number (stickered Japan --> stickered Hong Kong), at least

The engraved top plate with no Japan is interesting. I've never heard of that one before. Does it have the Asahi Optical markings?
02-15-2009, 08:21 PM   #12
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k1000

Yes - all the Asahi optical markings.
Attached Images
   

Last edited by CSSLDR; 02-15-2009 at 08:27 PM.
02-15-2009, 08:47 PM   #13
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I had one from 93 till about 02 I think. Served me well and it's the reason I'm still with Pentax today. Funny thing is I never really got serious about that K1000, but once I got that first *ist DS, life has never quite been the same.
02-16-2009, 06:56 AM   #14
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Interesting, CSSLDR. I'd put my money on that one being Japanese production, actually... gut feeling.

Also, one more feature to note (and that I myself just noticed): on the top plate, between the prism housing and the rewind knob, there's a little raised area towards the back that's exactly where the battery check button is on the KX. The KM has that bump also. That would indicate to me that that's a very early K1000, and definitely of Japanese make.

I've never seen a K1000 with that bump before.
02-16-2009, 09:37 AM   #15
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Manufacturing dates of some K1000 versions @ Asahi Optical Historical Club

Hi: Although I sold my K1000SE some years ago I still have a link to the Asahi Optical Historical Club website in my Bookmarks. I found a table of the manufacturing dates of the various Pentax MF bodies, including their claims of the version change dates for the K1000's. Since several replies have stated even approximate dates are unknown I thought you'd like to consider this information.

MF Bayonet

K1000 (1)
Early type - Metal Housings, Made in Japan
1975 - 1978
K1000 (2)
Second Type - Metal Housings, Assembled in Hong Kong
6/1978 - 1990
K1000 (3)
Late Type - Plastic Housings, Assembled in China
11/1990 - 1997
K1000 Anniversary (1994)
Special Edition of the K1000, including SMC Pentax-A 2/50mm lens, made on occasion of 35th anniversary of Pentax-API partnership. 300 pcs made for Italian market only
Bayonet Oddities
Scroll down to the Anniversary Edition
There is no mention of the K1000SE

Last edited by monochrome; 02-16-2009 at 12:13 PM.
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