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Lens fungus?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by phrenic, Apr 1, 2012.

  1. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    Hey folks,

    On the local craigslist there's a lens listed for cheap for a Kiron/Vivitar series One, OM mount. 70-210mm macro. There is a warning that there is a small speck of fungus, supposedly doesn't affect IQ but might be hard to check at the time of purchase. Would you take a chance on it?

    I have no clue how difficult it is to clean or if it would be worth servicing..

  2. shnitz

    shnitz Mu-43 All-Pro

    Not easy to clean, not worth servicing. Zooms from that period aren't really worth anything for the most part anyway. Third party zooms are worth even less. Third party zooms in not-perfect condition are worth the least of all. It's probably true that it doesn't affect the image adversely, and you can probably try baking the lens for a few hours in the sun to stop the growth, but it's not worth getting fixed. If you get it cheap enough, like $10-$15, might as well take the chance, as if it's no good, you're only out a fast food dinner.
  3. ibcj

    ibcj Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 15, 2011
    Fungus spreads. It steer clear of this one, as it could affect everything in your camera bag.
  4. harrysue

    harrysue Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 12, 2011
    Given that that's only a $15 lens (viewed the CL ad) , and that Series 1 70-210's are only $25 lenses, I'd just wait for a clean one for $10-15 more.

    Being paranoid, I wouldn't keep a lens with fungus next to other ones, but some people say all lenses have fungus spores that will grow if conditions are right.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. LVL8hacker

    LVL8hacker Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 4, 2012
    Pinehurst, North Carolina
    Larry Anderson
    If your like me, and service your own glass it might be worth it if you are in the need for that length. I often buy lenses that need "service" and take care of the work myself...I have gotten some real good deals in the past...and this very forum has gotten good deals with me selling them the serviced lenses :) 

    My favorite is my FD 50mm f/1.2L. It had fungus bad, but i was able to open it up and take care of it. Paid $175 for it, and now I am sure I could get way more if I was ever to sell it.
  6. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    Thanks guys..i think i'll take a pass. Seems eaiser to pay a bit more for a clean copy.
  7. shnitz

    shnitz Mu-43 All-Pro

    No, it doesn't, and no, it couldn't.
  8. m0nsieur2

    m0nsieur2 Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 8, 2012
    Some elements are cemented together using special refractive index matching glues, and their bond can deteriorate over time. Perhaps I don't have good eyes, but I have a 50mm lens that looked a little hazy so I thought: fungus. turns out the source of the haze was the bond of the two front elements separating, and I would have to spend about as much on new glue as I did for the lens. Just a rant from getting burned on a "clean and clear" Ebay lens. But I would agree with the earlier statement that it might be easier in the long run to spend a little more and get a good condition lens.
  9. jamespetts

    jamespetts Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    London, England
    The fungus issue aside, I have a Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm lens. Mine is a Canon FD fit, f/2.8-f/4 lens. It really is a very high quality lens (surprisingly so for a zoom of its day), but it is absolutely enormous - far too big, really, for a Micro Four Thirds camera. So big, in fact, that I'd worry about damaging the mount on the camera if this was attached without being supported all the time. The earlier constant f/3.5 version was even bigger, although reputed to be slightly higher quality.

    For reference, here are some photographs taken with the Series 1:

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Daffodil by James E. Petts, on Flickr

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Camellia by James E. Petts, on Flickr
    • Like Like x 1
  10. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Sounds like you might have some valuable experience you can share on my post where I'm attempting to compile advice on how to tell if a used lens is worth buying.
  11. RSilva

    RSilva Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 24, 2011
    I have this particular lens and it is full of fungus almost in all glass elements. I didn´t pay a penny for it but it actually performs quite well. I would never try to clean it unless it as only one spot of fungus near the blades or front/rear element. If there are to many elements to clean forget it.
    Fungus spores are everywhere and they won't spread from one lens to the other. Just avoid the conditions for them to grow. keep humidity below 40% during storage.
  12. jamespetts

    jamespetts Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    London, England
    Hmm - how would one go about doing this...?
  13. shnitz

    shnitz Mu-43 All-Pro

    Either keep it indoors, and if that's not enough (i.e. if you don't live in a cold climate, and/or your heating and A/C home system doesn't have a built-in humidifier that keeps your home at the average 30%), then store lenses in your camera bag, a shoe box, or a rubbermaid container with desiccants, like silica gel or a passive humidifier. Expose the lenses to sunlight every once in a while as well. Once your gear is serious enough (multi-thousand dollar, exotic lenses) and photography is a big part of your life, you could consider getting one of those cabinets that controls humidity.
  14. jamespetts

    jamespetts Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    London, England
    Hmm, I have a heat recovery ventilator that I think I was recommended to keep set at 58% (in other words, it will run the fan extra fast if humidity exceeds this). Otherwise, I just have passive ventilators and radiators for heating.

    How often should I change the silica gel? (I always store my lenses in the camera bag in any event, and currently have in there sachets of the stuff that came with the camera).
  15. Hikari

    Hikari Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 26, 2010
    The lens is nothing special with or without the fungus. The fungus can also indicate other problems--it has been stored in a humid environment.
  16. montaggio

    montaggio Mu-43 Regular

    The Kiron Vivitar Series 1 lenses were typically well done. I have a metal bodied 24 - 48mm that was great with film. Looking forward to trying it when my E-M5 arrives. Having said that, any time I have taken a zoom apart, I've had no end of headaches getting it properly reassembled. Find yourself a good clean copy - lots from Canon, etc in this range as well.
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