camera repair · Photography

Nikon LENS SERIES E Zoom 36~72mm 1:3.5 – Reassembly

An interesting lens that I bought with a tired Nikon FM2.

Originally released in 1982 with the Nikon EM model as an economical range of lenses for a mature photographers. This lens design is intended to provide you with three lens functions in one package; a macro, a prime and a zoom. Matched with the EM, this made for a very useful kit.

But, what I have here in my hand needs some servicing. The glass is clear. After a check to see how the sliders and helicoid work, I find them very stiff, Especially the zoom, so I decided to disassemble, clean and reassemble.

To support me I found another blog showing how the parts were disassembled, including some original drawings.

So I started. I took it all apart. Except for the elements in their mountings. Now to put it all back together.

The Aperture Subassembly

This was the last part out, so I started here, then I discovered that the aperture blades were oily.

After disassembling the aperture subassembly, without disassembling the actual blade subassembly, I soaked the components in isopropyl alcohol to remove the oil and then used canned air to blow the parts clean.

Then I began my reassembly. First these two parts.

Then the retaining ring.

The the lens subassembly.

Turn it upside down. And drop the lens element in place; flat side down.

Finally, the retaining ring.

The Zoom Tube Subassembly

This subassembly took a couple of iterations to get the sequence correct.

I start with the front extension tube.

Place the aperture subassembly inside the tube.

I place the copper leaf springs in their pockets and drop some lube on the peak.

Then slide the zoom helicoid over the springs, noting the orientation marking.

Assemble the screws and nut blocks.

The Focal Length

The focal length scale tube is mounted to tube assembly, after extending the tube to its full length.

The Mounting Face

This is straight forward, making sure to catch the actuators for the aperture.

Once the sub assembly is done, put a cover so you can stand the lens.

The Focusing Ring

The outer focusing ring is in good shape even if there are a few nicks. However, the rubber grip is in good condition.

Position the focus stop.

The inner half of the helicoid looks good, after cleaning.

The infinite focus needs to be set before the focus ring is locked down.


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