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Which old Nikon camera?
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2007 7:51 pm    Post subject: Which old Nikon camera? Reply with quote

I would like to buy an old Nikon film camera.
I have the FM2 but I would like an older one that better matches my Nikkor lenses, which are all (except a couple ones) of the "Nippon Kogaku" period.

Which camera would you advice? Based on performance and reliability I mean. But also on the aesthetics: it must fit the Nippon Kogaku style.

Also battery type may be important info.


PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2007 10:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nikon F

or, if you would like to be really different, Nikkorex F.

But Nikon F is more sensible and will serve you better.


PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2007 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know the F3, it looks like a 70s camera. I don't want that, I already have the FM2. Based on your indications I have now seen both the F and the Nikkorex F and they have the look that I want, so I think I will go with them, if they don't cost too much.
Else I will maybe look for a silver Nikkormat, which also should be compatible with the oldest lenses, as far as I know.

What kind of battery does the F have?


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 6:39 am    Post subject: Nikon F Reply with quote

Hello,

Some data (manuals):
http://www.cameraquest.com/fhistory.htm
http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/manuals/nikonf/nikonfmanual/index.htm
http://butkus.org/chinon/nikon/nikon_f/nikon_f.htm
...and about battery:
http://www.nikonhs.org/tech_articles/battery.html
http://www.paulbg.com/Nikon_F_meter_batteries.htm
Hope it helps.

By the was, it looks like a nice camera. That prism has a piramid form, like the black Bessaflex.


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 6:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Cosmin, this forum would be lost in googleland without you! Very Happy


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Orio!

I have the same "problem". I asked some Nikon freaks on Flickr and this is what they suggested for pre-AI lenses:

"Nikon F,F2,F3,F4 (F5 and F6 with optional AI tab modification)
Nikon FM, FE
Nikkormat FS,FT,FTN,FT2,FT3,EL,ELW (I am pretty sure the EL2 is not pre-AI compatible, but it has been 20 years since I saw one to confirm or deny it)."

"Nikon F, F2, F3, F4, FM, FE
All Nikkormats/Nikomats (the EL2 and FT3 have the flip-tab)
F5 with factory mod"


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No mention of my favourite which is the Nikon FG. Such an underrated little camera!


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Orio, I have found two interesting and and very useful sites:

http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/nikonfmount/index.htm

http://www.aiconversions.com/compatibilitytable.htm


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 7:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't understand, why shouldn't I mount my old NIkkors on the FM2 New?
I always did and they work. Confused

Also it puzzles me that my F70 is not mentioned in any table. Confused


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are your old Nikkors (the ones you still have Wink) non-AI lenses or are they AI'ed?

I've read somewhere that a non-AI lens can damage some cam bodies. Let me look for it again...


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 7:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here are some more infos:

http://www.aiconversions.com/images/intro.pdf

http://www.aiconversions.com/images/AICompat0107.PDF (<<)


And some more:

http://www.nikonlinks.com/unklbil/nomenclature.htm

http://www.cameraquest.com/aidaiais.htm


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello,

Here too says the same : "Definitely do not use, for it may damage the camera body."
http://www.nikonians.org/nikon/slr-lens.html

But it will work on a D40/D40x (according the tables) cheepest digital Nikon SLR Very Happy (without metering)


PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

damage camera body ... I think this is completely stupid I used them on Nikon D50 with great success. Mount is same on above models too, only noticable you can't rotate aperture ring if NON-AI lens mounted.You must set first the aperture before mount.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now I am understood, thanks to make it clear Chris!


PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 9:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seymore wrote:

And this is why. If you rotate the aperture ring when mounted, there is a small tab that can be damaged. Also, did you not notice that it was very hard to get the lens mounted? Now, if the pre-AI lens has a loose/well worn mount, it may not be so hard. But I still would not mount any lens that was not converted. The repair may cost more than the lens is worth.


That's bad news for me. It means that my FM2 New is practically useless, since 80-90% of the Nikkors I own is pre-AI Sad


PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Orio, for the money you can get for your FM2, you can buy a good pre-AI compatible Nikon cam.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 12:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LucisPictor wrote:
Orio, for the money you can get for your FM2, you can buy a good pre-AI compatible Nikon cam.


I will never sell my FM2. I consider it the best camera ever made.
Not to mention that it's been my "school" camera (meaning that with it I learned how to photograph)


PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://forum.mflenses.com/viewtopic.php?p=19586#19586
(see last link - I think those are pre-AI cameras)


PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Orio wrote:
...Not to mention that it's been my "school" camera (meaning that with it I learned how to photograph)


OK, that is a good reason! Smile


PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 3:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My vote for the ideal Nikon camera is the Nikkormat FT2. It was the last Non-AI mechanical Nikkormat, which means that non-AI lenses are no worry.... and of course AI lenses still work fine too, as long as they have the fork on the aperture ring..... and it was the first Nikkormat to use a silver cell instead of a mercury cell in the meter. This combination makes it unique, the only one that you don't have to worry about lenses OR batteries.

Some pre-AI lenses aren't a problem on the FM2: the 50/2.0 is small enough in diameter that the entire aperture ring fits inside of the AI tab on the body. But larger lenses can break the tab off as you bayonet the lens in, and the bayonet itself provides a lot of leverage for the purpose, pulling the lens back tight against the body as you lock it in. The camera will still work after that, but you'll be stuck with stop-down metering once the AI system is broken.


PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rick_oleson wrote:
My vote for the ideal Nikon camera is the Nikkormat FT2. It was the last Non-AI mechanical Nikkormat, which means that non-AI lenses are no worry.... and of course AI lenses still work fine too, as long as they have the fork on the aperture ring..... and it was the first Nikkormat to use a silver cell instead of a mercury cell in the meter. This combination makes it unique, the only one that you don't have to worry about lenses OR batteries.


Thanks! Very helpful indication, I will go for that Nikkormat then.

rick_oleson wrote:
Some pre-AI lenses aren't a problem on the FM2: the 50/2.0 is small enough in diameter that the entire aperture ring fits inside of the AI tab on the body. But larger lenses can break the tab off as you bayonet the lens in, and the bayonet itself provides a lot of leverage for the purpose, pulling the lens back tight against the body as you lock it in. The camera will still work after that, but you'll be stuck with stop-down metering once the AI system is broken.


Hmmm... I remember I felt some resistance once when mounting a lens. I have to check the camera, hope not to have done damage Sad


PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Orio. Please check you PMs... Wink


PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rick_oleson wrote:
My vote for the ideal Nikon camera is the Nikkormat FT2.


I second that - one of the best no-frills Nikons ever made. Just as bombproof as its bigger brother, the F2. I had one 30 years ago and it went everywhere in the car or on the bike.

Not that I was there, but from what I could see at the time and later, the preferred photyjay's camera during the Vietnam war was the F2, but it was noticeable how many PJs kept an FT2 as backup or even a main camera in the boonies.

A friend of mine lost his F2s Photomic off the back of his bike one time - when he realised and finally recovered it, it was looking a bit the worse for wear - the metering head was bent and snapped off, the lens was a bit skewed and the body a bit bashed looking. He sent it off to Nikon UK expecting a massive repair bill - they sent it back fully fixed up and didn't charge him a bean.

I dropped and bashed that FT2 a lot, but it never quite needed that level of repair Smile


PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it was mostly the Nikon F and Nikkormat FTn in VN, the F2 and FT2 came along pretty late in the war. I have an all-black F with meterless prism and F36 motor, looks like it came right out of a VN shooter's kit.... had it fall off a desk once with a long heavy lens pointed up one direction and the motor pointed up in the other, and the weight split the camera right in two, like a wish-bone. took me 2 or 3 years to find the parts to rebuild it, but i finally got it done....


PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2007 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rick_oleson wrote:
I think it was mostly the Nikon F and Nikkormat FTn in VN, the F2 and FT2 came along pretty late in the war. I have an all-black F with meterless prism and F36 motor, looks like it came right out of a VN shooter's kit.... had it fall off a desk once with a long heavy lens pointed up one direction and the motor pointed up in the other, and the weight split the camera right in two, like a wish-bone. took me 2 or 3 years to find the parts to rebuild it, but i finally got it done....


Ah, you'd be right - for the bulk of the war it certainly would have been the early models. Nice thing about them at the time and now is any repair using the proper bits will last another 40 years.
Wish I'd kept mine - I might go and snag another one from fleabay.