adapted m42 and m39 lenses dont line up with the top of the camera. Any way to fix this?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by colbycheese, May 26, 2015.

  1. colbycheese

    colbycheese Mu-43 Veteran

    May 1, 2012
    Way up there.
    So i have decided to purchase some more legacy lenses to play with. I bought a Super Takumar and a Jupiter 8 lens and purchased the necessary adapters to use them on my cameras, however neither the M42 Super Takumar or the M39 Jupiter 8 line up with the top of the camera when screwed into the adapter. I understand that for m42 lenses this was a common occurrence on film SLR's with the M42 mount. I noticed my adapter has 2 small holes opposite to each other on the outside ring. I am assuming you can use these to adjust the part of the adapter where the lens attaches, but i am not sure if this would be the fix to this issue. Does anyone know if there is a way to get the lenses to line up properly when used with an adapter? Does it matter where you start screwing it in?
  2. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 20, 2013
    You can only start it at one place. Is it 180 degrees off or only by a bit? There's really no way around it except to put some tape or something on the threads that prevents it from screwing in too far. If it doesn't go in enough you're screwed :) Or, perhaps a higher quality adapter? I never liked screw mounts.
  3. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    The only thing that matters is the depth of the lens mount, not the orientation. I'm sure they will work fine.
  4. listers_nz

    listers_nz Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 22, 2013
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    Real Name:
    The answer is that it depends on the adapter. The cheap M42 and M39 adapters I have bought in the past have been two pieces - the bulk of the adapter with M4/3 mount is one piece and the ring that the lens threads into is another piece, and the two pieces are held together with small grub screws with an allen (hex) key head. If yours are like this, then mount the lens & adapter on the camera, mark (e.g. small piece of tape) where you want the lens to line up, take the adapter & lens assembly off the camera, loosen the grub screws and then you should be able to rotate the lens to where you want it, then tighten up the grub screws.
    If you lens adapter isn't in two pieces, then I suggest looking for one that is - they usually have the external part in black and the ring is silver.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  5. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    Real Name:
    Don't do this.It will mess up infinity focus.
  6. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    Was just about to suggest the same thing that listers_nz did. There's your solution.
  7. colbycheese

    colbycheese Mu-43 Veteran

    May 1, 2012
    Way up there.
    Yes my adapter is a 2 piece one. I see 2 holes opposite to each other. Is this where you would insert the allen key head to adjust the adapter? Also i am not sure what size of allen key it would be. I only have the ones from IKEA and i tried but they don't fit in. I am not sure where i could find one that would fit. There is no indication on what size key you need. EDIT: I took a closer look into those 2 holes and it dosen't look like a hexagon. Its more like a circle.
  8. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    It might also be a tiny screw, either a slot (ideally) or a Phillip's (bound to get stripped). If you have any optical screwdrivers or anything like that for electronics, that would be the best bet.
  9. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    What problem are you trying to fix again? Why is it bad if the lens isn't perfectly oriented?
  10. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    What Listers said ;
  11. colbycheese

    colbycheese Mu-43 Veteran

    May 1, 2012
    Way up there.
    it is not necessarily "bad" but it makes it hard to see the aperture setting and focus. My Jupiter 8 lens is currently 180 degrees flipped, so i cant even see the aperture setting I am on.
  12. PhotoDmiK

    PhotoDmiK Mu-43 Regular

    May 26, 2015
    I had same problem with cheap m42 adapter. Lens was rotated by 120 degrees and there was little infinity overrun. Adapter was like 0.05mm short. Fixed it unscrewing ring and placing thin tape between two pieces of adapter.

    So you can fix it yourself but be ready for some more steps to adjust adapter length too.
  13. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    If there are hardware stores where you live, take the adapter to one and any old guy working there will get you the right size tool. Should not cost more than a few dollars.
  14. Rum Maximus

    Rum Maximus Mu-43 Regular

    May 11, 2013
    LV, NV
    Real Name:
    Pardon the crappy cameraphone pic...


    If you want to index the lens to the body of the camera, use a 2-piece m42 thread -> μ4/3 adapter. If you look at the pic of this Fotga adapter, you'll see where the setscrew is that loosens the inner ring which is what the lens actually screws into.

    Pretty much you just mount the lens to the adapter, mount the adapter to the camera, loosen the 3 setscrews, turn the lens until it's indexed the way you want it, then tighten down the setscrews.

    For m39 thread lenses (non- range finder types) you can get an m39 thread -> m42 thread adapter ring that screws onto the lens then lets the lens screw into the m42 thread -> μ4/3 adapter.

    As other people have pointed out, you can use a sheet of paper to shim the lens but that will affect infinity focus. With some of the old Russian lenses, I've had to play around doing that before I tore into the lens & disassembled it to try and fix focusing problems.

    Interestingly enough, the m42 thread adapters are the only ones I've run across that allow you to index the lens to the body of the camera.

    This is where I buy my m42 thread -> μ4/3 adapters. Decent pricing and relatively quick shipping.
  15. colbycheese

    colbycheese Mu-43 Veteran

    May 1, 2012
    Way up there.
    This is exactly the kind of holes my m39 and m42 adapter have. They aren't exactly the cheapest ones. I paid around 70 for both of them so there is a possibility that they are above average quality. I bought the fotodiox branded ones.