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Legacy Lenses Discuss the use of older lenses, using adapters, from the Olympus OM system, Leica M and R-series, and the millions of others too.

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Old 27th June 2016
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Naughty Nigel Naughty Nigel is offline
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Lens Fungus

What do we know about lens fungus?

I have several older lenses that have suffered this problem, and I know I am by no means alone.

My first notable loss was a Vivitar 100 ~ 300 mm zoom that became unusable several years ago. It wasn't a bad lens in its day (late1970's - bought from Dixons) but probably wasn't the greatest loss to photography.

I also have a couple of Zuiko 50 mm lenses (both f1.4 and 1.8) that have become a little hazy with some spots, but thankfully I have another 50 mm f1.4 that remains crystal clear; for now at least.

This is a problem that seems to afflict Zuiko standard length lenses, but is less prevalent in their wide angle optics. I don't have any Zuiko telephotos so I cannot comment on them.

More recently I bought a 50 mm shift lens from Japan for my Mamiya RZ67. The lens body and front optics are in pristine condition, and perfectly usable, but there is a 'wipe mark' inside the rear lens group.

At fist I thought this was a wipe mark on the outside of the rear element, but closer examination shows that it is definitely inside. This may be reachable by separating the two halves of the shift lens assembly.

So, to sum up, how is it caused, can it be prevented, and is it contagious from one lens to another?

More to the point, how repairable is lens fungus, and how long before it damages the lens element itself? Are there any specialist repairers in the UK who can deal with this?

Naughty Nigel

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fungus, zuiko

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