relubed, but still stiff ... what next ?

Zman

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Today I disassembled and cleaned the focusing helicoid on my Jupiter 9 rangefinder lens following a You Tube video. The lens had been extremely difficult to rotate for focus. I removed all the old grease using lighter fluid and cleaned all thread surfaces with alcohol. They came out perfectly clean and I didn't see any damage to the threads. I relubed the helical using "SuperLube", a synthetic grease (PTFE). Reassembly went fine and infinity was maintained.

While the lens is now able to focus freely, it is still a bit stiff doing so. I had been hoping for a nice smooth and buttery focus. The Jupiter 9 was made in 1969. Is this result all I can expect ? Is there something else I should have done or can do ? I don't mind giving it another try. It's a nice cold weather project.

Thanks for any help.
 

Zman

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Tried a solution from some members at Pentax Forums that worked for me. I re-cleaned the lens and re-applied a much smaller amount of the "SuperLube" grease. It's a bit thick for lens use and I used too much on the first try which caused problem on the finer threads of the helicoid. I'm told a better grease product for lenses is Helimax XP, available online. But, right now my Jupiter 9 is nice and smooth.
 

Ross the fiddler

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A synthetic grease with PTFE can be made with different resistance properties. That is, it is not just a lubricating grease but also a 'damping' grease. It is useful to smooth the jerky movement in photographic equipment like lenses & tripod panorama heads etc., but maybe you needed a lighter grade of it.
 

barry13

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When I've CLA'd Rokkors, I only use a couple toothpick tips worth of synthetic bicycle grease.
(A much better deal than Helimax if the viscosity is appropriate, although even a tiny vial would service a lot of lenses.)

I've read that tighter (finer threads) helicoids should have thinner grease, and looser ones should have thicker.
 

Ross the fiddler

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When I've CLA'd Rokkors, I only use a couple toothpick tips worth of synthetic bicycle grease.
(A much better deal than Helimax if the viscosity is appropriate, although even a tiny vial would service a lot of lenses.)

I've read that tighter (finer threads) helicoids should have thinner grease, and looser ones should have thicker.
When I was looking for this type of grease it ended up being Tri-Flow Clear Synthetic Grease from Cleveland, OH. I think I bought it on ebay, but I wanted it for redoing pivot points on tripod legs etc & now I also use it for lubricating string fine adjustment screws on violin tailpieces etc. it's also ideal for 'O' ring lubrication too.
 

Zman

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A synthetic grease with PTFE can be made with different resistance properties. That is, it is not just a lubricating grease but also a 'damping' grease. It is useful to smooth the jerky movement in photographic equipment like lenses & tripod panorama heads etc., but maybe you needed a lighter grade of it.
Yes, you are right. I have learned that the "SuperLube" grease I used has a NLGI rating grade 2, while Helimax has a NLGI rating of grade 1 being thinner.
 

barry13

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This is the bicycle grease I use, fwiw:
Finish Line Premium Grease made with Teflon Fluoropolymer - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002L5YYYA/

Gnarlydog, who repairs and modifies a lot of lenses, says re the Finish Line grease:
I have used that grease on very fine helicoids but it's way too light on poorly machined (sloppy) Russian lenses
I find it also light enough for the very fine thread of the Kodak Cine lenses.
I still have a tube of that grease that is probably 12+ years old; no separation and clear as the day I bought it
 

Ross the fiddler

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I don't know how long these synthetic greases with Teflon has been around for, but I remember as an apprentice in a newspaper several decades ago the tradesman getting an expensive small tube of grease out to use on a worn drive shaft of a Linotype machine. I know Teflon has been around for a long time now though.
 

gnarlydog australia

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This is the bicycle grease I use, fwiw:
Finish Line Premium Grease made with Teflon Fluoropolymer - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002L5YYYA/

Gnarlydog, who repairs and modifies a lot of lenses, says re the Finish Line grease:
my tube looks different, but it could be just old packaging
If I put some of my finger and pinch it with the thumb and then separate them, there is no resistance and no stringing. It almost feels like Vaseline
 

Ross the fiddler

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