lens aperture not working & i cant open my battery cover?


Link Posted 16/02/2004 - 02:04
hello everybody

im a newbie in photography and i recently acquired a 2nd hand asahi pentax SPII with a takumar lens (Takumar 50mm f/1.4).

i dont know if anybody had asked this before, but my problem is this, i have tried changing the aperture setting of my lens and i can see that the aperture is not closing or opening (it is always in its widest setting). is the aperture of my lens still working fine or do i need to have it repaired?

another problem of mine is this, i cant open my battery cover, i would like to open it so that i can use its exposure meter, anybody here had the same problem before that can help me.

any advice or comments will be greatly appreciated. btw nice forum you guys have


Link Posted 16/02/2004 - 08:00
Hi Molo,

I assume from your post that the lens is on the camera when you have been changing the aperture. To give the brightest possible image in the viewfinder the lens is designed to remain open at full aperture until the shutter is fired, at which point it shuts down to the selected aperture for the duration of the exposure. You can check this is working correctly in a number of ways but the simplest way would be to do the following:

1. set the camera to a slow shutter speed (or even the bulb setting)
2. Select a small aperture to start with (F16)
3. Fire the shutter and observe the lens iris - it should close to the selected stop and immediately the shutter has fired return to full aperture

Best wishes


Link Posted 16/02/2004 - 09:17
hello stephen,

thanks alot for the reply, i really appreciate it

do you have any ideas on how i can open my battery cover, it seems to be stuck might be that the battery had already leaked. i tried opening the bottom cover and still theres no way of removing the battery since the battery housing comes with the cover. i hope you can give me another brilliant ideas regarding this. i really really want to use the exposure meter although there are alot of pentax users says the its not necessary since spotmatics are very good cameras

again thanks alot for the reply

Kim C

Link Posted 16/02/2004 - 09:37
Hi Molo,
An easier way to check the diapraghm is to move the lever on the lens to M and then the iris should open and shut. If you go to this link, you will find a copy of the manual for the SP1000.


The SP1000 is basically a cut down version of the SPII without self timer etc but the rest of the operation is the same. The battery cover should open with a coin. See page 10 of the manual. You can't get the normal replacements anymore as they were mercury though a good camera shop should have a substitute. There are also other ways using a "normal" battery. I will have a look tonight and see if I can find you a link. If the cover won't open, it may be due to corrosion bearing in mind the age of the battery. If it won't open with a coin, some people have tried drilling a couple of small holes either side of the slot to use a pair of dividers to open it.

If you want a copy of the SPII manual instead of the SP1000, I have one. Hopefully when I get time, I will get it in electronic format and put it on the web. In the meantime if you want a photocopy send me a message and we can sort something out. You can also get a poorish quality copy here


Kim C

Link Posted 16/02/2004 - 09:45
Hi again, sorry but I missed part of your last post. If the whole battery compartment is coming out, I think you will have a problem. I don't know if it will help but you can download a copy of the spotmatic repair manual here.
However, taking a camera apart is not that easy especially if you don't have the right tools. Getting it back together is even more difficult!!!! I've tried on a couple of old ones including an SPII which is still in pieces.


Link Posted 17/02/2004 - 05:41
hello kim, thanks alot for all your advice, with regards to my battery cover, i think this is due to corrosion of the battery. i also have a copy of the service manual for my SPII but i cant seem to find any information on how to remove the battery cover. i have tried using the coin but it keeps on slipping
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