New lens – Nikkor 25-50mm f4 zoom.

Nikkor 25-50mm f4.Nikkor Ai 25-50mm f4.

A new addition to my manual focus Nikkor collection: The Nikkor Ai 25-50 f4 zoom lens.

Click lens image below for Nikon site.

As of May 2017: Nikon seems to have taken down their Nikkor 1001 Nights Tales – this is very sad because it had so much interesting information about the design and production of many lenses. I hope this is just for the duration of their 100th anniversary; it would be very short-sighted of them if it is gone for good.
Update 20 Aug 2017: it looks like all the tales ending with No.60 are back.

One of Nikon’s early professional zoom lenses, which should complement my ‘F’ camera quite nicely. This lens was manufactured in 1981 and by the end of that year was changed by Nikon to an Ai-s version. For some reason the second-hand price for the Ai-s version is more expensive than the Ai, there is no real reason for buying the later version unless one owns a Nikon FA camera, even then it is questionable as the internal construction of both lenses is exactly the same. All Ai / Ai-s lenses fit on every Nikon SLR camera, be they manual or AF with one caveat; some of the cheaper AF cameras will not meter with manual focus lenses (check your instruction manual). The only warning I would add here is ‘non Ai lenses’ made for the Nikon ‘F’ will damage most other cameras, with the exception of the F3, F4 & the Df !

See this link for camera compatibility:

This lens has some very nice qualities;  although long discontinued, it is without colour aberrations and images are sharp from corner-to-corner, light fall-off being very low even wide open. It will attain peak sharpness at f/5.6 and holds well even when stopped down to f/16 which delivers very good results.
Looking forward to cooler weather  😎 so that I can get out & about with it fitted on both film and digital cameras.

Hanging by a filament.

Spiders web.Nikon F – Micro Nikkor 55mm f2.8 AIs lens.

The Spider’s Web

It hangs where daisies mauve and white
Stand dreaming in the morning light,
A spider’s web, a fairy thing
Whose threads to daisy-petals cling,
And quiver in the sunlit air;
And on the cobweb here and there
Round beads of amber dew are hung
By elfin fingers deftly strung
Along each gleaming silver thread.
The hairy spider-witch has fled,
And crouches in a huddled heap,
Beneath a daisy, half asleep.

And for this hour of sun and dew,
The web belongs to me and you!

 Enid Blyton Book of Poetry 1934

Converting an AF Nikkor lens for Nikon F/F2 metering.

AF Nikkor lens convertedHow to get an AF Nikkor 50mm f1.8 lens to engage with the metering system of a 1973 Nikon Ftn camera?
Easy ! If you can find the ‘Rabbits Ears’ as a spare part; a little difficult these days but not impossible, find a friendly camera repair shop.

Look at the F stop ring of most Nikon AF lenses (Pre ‘G’ type) there are two little dots at the f5.6 indication. These are where you will carefully drill two small holes, slightly smaller in diameter than the screws that should have come with the Rabbits Ears. They must be deep enough for the screws to be flush with the top of the ears pedestal, but no more…….. care is needed here ! I used some tape on the drill as an indication of the depth required and held the drill bit in my hand, not in any form of drilling machine.
Fit the Ears by placing a very small amount of contact adhesive on the base of the pedestal, then position with the step facing towards the front of the lens. The adhesive is only really needed so that fitting each screw is a little less fiddly; avoid over tightening these screws as they will have cut their own thread (if you got the diameter right) if not – don’t panic as a small amount of adhesive on the thread of each screw will take up the slack; but leave to dry for at least 24 hours before using the lens.

Voilà – an AF lens metering with an F & F2 camera system.


Nikon F – test film.

Nikon F - test filmFujifilm Neopan 400 @ box speed in Microdol-X 1+3. 22c for 15.5 mins with Kodak style agitation.
No filter, just a slight increase in contrast as compensation for image scan.

Ho & it was taken yesterday morning at Qurum Natural Park near Muscat – more of these later, as it is a lovely place for an
early morning walk & not a long drive from my house.

As an after thought for anyone interested: this was exposed using the camera meter, so I think my TLC has worked quite well.

My new friend – Nikon F with Ftn finder.

Nikon F with FTn finder.Ignoring the fact that I have more cameras than any sensible person should have – I have acquired a  1973 Nikon F (S/no says manufactured between JUL 1973 to SEP 1973) with an FTn finder.
Wanted one of these cameras for years, but would not (could not) justify the prices being asked – but this was a sensible price and more importantly, in good condition & with a working meter system: not bad for a camera nearly 43 years old !  Thanks Freyja  🙂

The only thing I found was that the meter seemed to be about one & a half  stops out, but consistently over many different ‘f’ & ASA settings: which meant the ring resistor was probably just dirty. Or it had been modified to take the modern equivalent of a 1.35volt mercury battery (several methods available – all unknown on a newly acquired camera) suspicion aroused because it contained two mercury batteries that still indicated 1.3volts; how old were these I ask myself….. especially as they have been unobtainable for years.

As rumour has it that I am an electronics engineer, one of these heads should not be outside my capabilities for cleaning and minor adjustment; given the right documentation (find out were the access screws are hidden !!! ) under the top leatherette as it happens.

It turned out that at some point in time the battery-box  -lead wire had corroded and this being replaced along with some judicious application of Isopropyl alcohol  gave the whole thing a new lease of life, it now only reads about half a stop out compared to my Nikon D800.

All in all a happy bunny……….