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Konica 57mm f/1.4 - Lots of oil on blades

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by jgmankos, Apr 23, 2012.

  1. jgmankos

    jgmankos Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 9, 2012
    Slatington, PA
    I have a Konica 57mm f/1.4 that is in great condition other than the fact that the aperture blades are coated with oil....and there's so much there it's looks to have coated some of the internal lens elements as well.

    Can anyone tell me how hard it is to clean the blades? I've taken lenses apart before (mostly to clean up little bits of fungus) and I have tools to do it...but I've never messed with the iris blades before.

    I do have a Konica adapter and have taken a few test shots but I think the oil coating on the lens elements is degrading the image quality too much to determine anything. I've read it's actually supposed to be a pretty good lens so I'm thinking it might be worth the effort. Any advice?

    I apologize if this isn't the right place for this...if it isn't by all means point me in the right direction :smile:
  2. harrysue

    harrysue Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 12, 2011
    I managed to split a Vivitar-Kiron in half with help from Google so that the iris was exposed. Although the web said to take the diaphragm apart and clean each blade separately, I used pec pads wetted with mineral spirits to wipe the closed assembled blades until they were mostly free of oil. With the blades open, I was able to clean the underlying glass with Eclipse fluid too.

    The way the Kiron was designed, there were no alignments or lens elements to disturb when doing this. Crazy thing just twists apart after taking off some collars. Other lens could be like Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and fly apart with bearings and springs all over the place. never to work again. That's what happened to the last one I tackled (stuck in macro mode).
  3. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    You've really got nothing to lose at this point by giving it a shot. As for the lens itself, from what I understand it's nothing particularly special. It's probably worth $60 or so in good shape.

    At this point, its a basically a paperweight, so if I were you'd I'd go ahead and take it apart and see what you can do. If you do tackle this project, it would be great if you would take some photos of the process and post a report here.
  4. grantb

    grantb Mu-43 Veteran

    I opened mine to clean and re lubricate the focusing. I didn't mess with the aperture blades at all. It's not too hard to get apart. Putting it back together is more work though. It's one of those things where you have to be in just the right grooves on both sides of the helical bit and simultaneously screw the front and back half on.

    You have nothing to loose though... except your sanity, muhahahaha
  5. robertro

    robertro Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 22, 2010
    It sounds like you have experience in the assembly and disassembly, which is the hard part.

    Cleaning the blades is a matter of
    1) being careful, because you can bend these delicate blades;
    2) using a lint-free cleaning pad (Q-Tips or lens cleaning cloths work well soaked with lighter fluid;
    3) not going too deep into the construction unless you want hours of fun (try to keep the aperture mechanism together and keep opening/closing and wiping the surfaces until you see little/no oil). You can get perfect results if you venture to take apart the aperture blades - I've done that a couple of times - but you can usually get good enough results by just soaking the blades and wiping with a clean cloth repeatedly.

    If the lens surfaces inside are coated with grease residue, you can wipe them off gently with a lighter fluid/Ronsonol-impregnated cloth. If that doesn't work, you could rub gently and evenly with Pond's cold creme (a very fine abrasive) and then clean it with lighter fluid. If you've done heavy fungus removal, this is similar.

    Good luck! It's a nice lens.
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