I seem to remember KEH putting Ai'd on lenses that had been converted, in their print catalogs. Maybe that is no longer the case.
I like these guys a lot, but the fact is that gear can indeed look nice, but that is no guarantee that it's going to work well, or at all. The grading seems to be geared more for the guy that wants to put one on his shelf, not for photographers like me that actually use it.
> >I like these guys a lot, but the fact is that gear can indeed >look nice, but that is no guarantee that it's going to work >well, or at all. The grading seems to be geared more for the >guy that wants to put one on his shelf, not for photographers >like me that actually use it.
exactly my results with them lately! Two beautiful lens that did not work!
i now look in the "for sale" forum as every lens i have gotten both looks great and works great as well...
I have an F4, and an AI'd 55/1.2, and am wondering what to do (or maybe not to do). Perhaps your caution was aimed at the use of non-AI/pre-AI, non-converted lenses? Or else I am misunderstanding what the issue is. I have mounted the 55/1.2 on my D7000, with so far good results and no problems. I briefly mounted it on my F4 when I got it, but took it right back off w/o taking a shot, but it seemed fine. I guess I have a lot to learn on this subject. I am not sure what the lens speed sensing post is, or where to locate it (just on factory AI/AI-S lenses, or AF as well?), or what the baffle mentioned is that would allow Matrix metering with these old lenses. All my confusion is compounded by the various sources that state the F4 as working with AI-converted and pre-AI lenses without qualification (except to say to flip up the meter-coupling tab on the F4's mount). So, please direct me (and a little clarification of terms): coupling at the bottom of the F4 et al. mirror box, lens speed sensing post, baffle? Thanks!
Was the 55/1.2 AI'd by a guy on eBay who goes by the username microbee? If so, you have no reason to worry. He mills down the baffle (the piece of metal that sticks out from the lens element to provide some protection) so it becomes a tab to engage the linkage inside the lens mount opening in the lower right as you're looking at the front of the body.
If it wasn't, then I would be very cautious about mounting it to the body, since the baffle will contact the linkage and may damage upon mounting the lens.
All AI, AIS, Series E, AF, AF-D, and AF-I/AF-S (with aperture ring) lenses have the post, which looks like a tab.
Here's a pre-AI 55/1.2 Nikkor-S. As you can see, the baffle is the piece that sticks out around the rear element. On the 55/1.2 it's a machined part of the lens mount itself, unlike on other lenses, where it's a black piece of metal that's inserted inside the mount and held in place with three screws.
Now, on this 58/1.2 Noct, you can see the modified rear mount with the lens speed sensing post sticking up.
The offending linkage on the F4 body:
Obviously, there is sample variation, so there's a possibility that your 55/1.2 may be fine, due to wear on the mount, or due to Nikon using a slightly shorter baffle on it. But, the rule of thumb is to avoid using the 28/3.5 pre-AI, certain pre-AI 35/1.4's, and all pre-AI 55/1.2's, even if AI'd, on an FG, FA, or F4...
F4, F2AS, F2A, F FTn, FM2n, Nikomat FT2, FTn - John Laughlin Photography - nature photographer
This is slightly OT, but I recently bought and had to return 2 35mm AIS lenses (eating $50 in shipping charges) because they arrived with the helicoid lube totally dried out and the barrels loose (which I understand is commmon with the Nikon WAs) and the local repair shop wants $100 for a CLA. When I complained to the sales person, he said that the grading is only on cosmetics (I assume they will notice if there's a real problem like sticking iris blades, etc). Just to put this in perspective, I've been shopping at KEH for over 25 years now, and this was my first negative experience.
So: "microbee" offers service that will not only make the pre-AI/AI'd 55/1.2 safe to mount to the F4, but actually modifies the baffle in such a way that it will properly operate the maximum aperture lever, thus enabling matrix metering?
That is what I think I am reading (missed that part the first time!), and if so, how very very cool is that! Now I will DEFINITELY look "microbee" up (can't be much more than John White's conversions, which don't address this issue).
Thanks John, for being a great resource. I am beginning to finally get the wild, wooly, wonderfully confusing vastness of Nikkor straight in my head.
Yes, Brian will modify the baffle so it won't interfere with the F4's lens speed sensing mechanism. So, if you have some stuff to do in Tacoma, get in touch with him, drop your lens off, then go take care of business. When you're done, pay the $38+tax (I assume he'd have to charge tax on it, since it's local), pick up your lens, and head home.
Hello F3 nut -Snip- >KEH does not make a distinction between a factory AI'd lens >and a factory AI lens. I'm not sure if the people who enter >the inventory are aware of the differences. > -Snip-
I like KEH, & I often see better prices than or Ebay, but I have to say that their weakest links are the receiving inspectors-people & their web site. I like a web site that I can type in a search phrase such as: "Nikon 300mm f4.5 AIS lens" & be taken to it rather than going through 5 branches of a tree to arrive there. & I don't know why they can't list serial #s. I find it hard to believe that they don't have them entered into their system. And if they have the #s, it would help the buyers have certainty as to what they are buying , & reduce returns. For example Nikon often has the same or almost the same title for different iterations of a lens. If KEH doesn't have serial #s recorded, it would be easier for one to steal equipment. Regards, J. McGraw
They do have the serial numbers recorded. The problem is that the sales staff doesn't actually handle the gear. One trick that they did suggest that you do, if you want to guarantee that you get a certain item, is to add an item to the cart, then put in, say, 10 items for the amount. Click "Update Cart". If it says that only one item is available, then, send them an email and find out what the serial number is. If it's in an acceptable range, buy the item.
With respect to the 300/4.5's, they do show which version it is in their listings. The EDIF version is sold as a 300 F4.5 ED INTERNAL FOCUS AIS (or AI), and the regular version is just marked 300 F4.5 AIS (or AI, NON AI, AI'D, etc). Probably need to drop the "mm" for the site to understand what you're searching for.
The purchasing department does need a little bit of education, re Nikkor lenses, though... I may send them a message about it, so they can start calling the lenses that were factory AI'd what they are, instead of lumping them in with the AI lenses.
Sat 28-Dec-13 05:21 AM | edited Sat 28-Dec-13 06:02 AM by Googlyelmo
And I think they may have improved their policies somewhat. When I was recently shopping for a 35mm f2 Nikkor-O, I noticed they had both factory AI converted copies, marked as AI, and aftermarket conversions, marked as AI'd, and the photos, while often stock, do reflect the obvious (to the knowing eye) difference: factory AI with proper non-AI coupling shoe w/ADR cutouts, and aperture ring w/two lines of markings, and AI'd with solid coupling shoe, one line of markings, and the old style knobby aperture ring.
Of course, none of this addresses the fact that the mount itself, whether factory or home conversion, is never changed, so technically none of these lenses are true-AI, and that can be a problem using some lenses on some bodies (55/1.2 on F4, for example).
Is this new, or as always? I do know that the lens I bought, advertised as AI, is a proper Nikon conversion.
>Nothing has changed with respect to their policies and >grading. This thread is about the lenses that have always >been mismarked as being AI lenses, when they are AI modified >lenses. > >-J > >D200, F4, F3P, F2ASx2, F2A, F, Nikomat FT2, FTn > >John Laughlin Photography - nature photographer > >My Flickr account >My Facebook page
As far as I know KEH has always described factory AI converted lenses as AI and home machined conversions as AI'd. I have 30 lenses purchased from KEH that are factory AI converted. This is based on either the lens having the metal focus ring or the serial number of K series lenses which appear to be original AI .
KEH always has been that way. They've trained their buyers to look for the ridge and second set of numbers. If it has that, then it's an "AI" lens in their minds. Other shops tend to do it as well. I've been able to convince one of the local shops to use the correct terminology, though.
These days, when I purchase a Nikkor from them, I try to make sure that they have only one copy of a certain lens, and ask for the serial, if it's one of the lenses that might damage my F4. If not, then, I'll take whatever lens they send me.
Thank you to all, I now understand the issue with my 55mm F1.2. At the time of the original scheme I was given the impression that Nikon did not AI modify this lens for some reason, I think I have a better idea why I might have been told that.
Welcome. Yeah, most of the 55/1.2's are AI convertible, but, with the factory conversion, best not to try mounting it to an F4 or an FA (or, I guess an EM). Best to just get a 4xxxxx serial 55/1.2 instead, though. Most repair shops are leery of modifying the rear lens mount (as on the 55) or the rear lens baffle (as on the 28/3.5 and possibly the later K-type 35/1.4). The person who modified my old 28/3.5 Nikkor-H passed away at the beginning of the year.
Not a problem. I find that the 28mm is just not the right focal length anyway. It's wide, but not enough, usually. I find that the 24mm is better, even though you do have to be careful of the distortion at the edges. Actually found that the 20-24 jump is enough of a change to lessen the redundancy factor that you'd get from having a 28 and a 35.
So, my feasible "dream kit" would be 20-24-35-50-85-105 Micro-180-300. (yes, a 50) Ultimate dream kit would be either 13 or 15, then 24-35-50-85-105 Micro-180-300-400. Right now, I have everything but the 20 in the feasible kit. Picked up a 35-135 AIS, which isn't a terrible lens, for the 35mm range, and, once my 300/4.5 is fixed, I'll have the 300 range covered.
Thu 21-Aug-14 10:55 AM | edited Thu 21-Aug-14 11:03 AM by Leonard62
It's a very good lens indeed. I have one and the ED-IF version as well. Here is a copy of Nikon's data sheet where they say the lens is made of Fluorite crystal and rare earth elements before they used the ED descriptor in the lens name. It's a highly sought after lens because of it's compact size for a 400 and it's high performance. I got mine from KEH. It wasn't cheap.