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Buying a Leica-ready Jupiter lens
Old 03-13-2017   #1
Redseele
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Buying a Leica-ready Jupiter lens

I feel bad about asking about this but here it goes: does anyone know where I can buy a Jupiter 3 or Jupiter 8 lens that is already shimmed to focus correctly on Leica bodies?

I've read the guides, but for the life of me I've ruined lenses in the past and I'd rather not do this kind of work on my own.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 03-13-2017   #2
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Question is what is it worth to you ?

Four safer ways to do it:
1) get a serial # under 52xxx (that's what I have)
2) get an Amedeo adapter and a Contax Jupiter
3) get a Canon 50/1.5 instead - if you are OK with a couple of optical imperfections, this should be around or less than US 300.
4) get a Lomo Jupiter-3 instead.

Then again, all the above might be too expensive to you. Maybe get a chrome Canon 50/1.8 instead ?

Roland.
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Old 03-13-2017   #3
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I think Roland covered it pretty well.

I'd add that I bought my 1954 (or is it 1957?) Jupiter-3 from a fellow RFF-er who already shimmed it for me (thanks Jan). Just want to mention that's another option. You just have to wait, ask, wait, ask, but eventually you'll catch someone with a shimmed lens he/she will sell ya.

There was another thread here lately about a new Lomo product, in that thread was a tad of discussion about the new Jupiter-3 lens. I don't have one, but I heard they were darn good. I think they're something like $600

As for serial number under 52xxx, I don't know if that holds for J-3, J-8, or both.
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Old 03-13-2017   #4
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Yes, the Jupiter 3+ looks very good and I would consider it were it not for the fact that it's sold out everywhere. I think it was a limited run. Buying a Russian or a Zeiss Jena lens with the Contax-Leica adapter is beginning to sound like an interesting idea.

Thank you for all the feedback so far.
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Old 03-13-2017   #5
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Stephen still appears to sell the 3+: https://shop.cameraquest.com/lomogra...1.5-jupiter-3/
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Old 03-13-2017   #6
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There was someone on the forum who did this work. I can't think of the name at the moment, but it will come to me--or--

OK, it's Brian Sweeney. He might be findable here, or over at photo.net. Oh, and There's John Van Stelten at The Focal Point in Colorado. I think they are both googleable. I would hold out for what you really want. You want a Jupiter, get a Jupiter!
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Old 03-13-2017   #7
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Try Fedka dot com. He sells lots of Russian stuff and is supposed to be good. He has a choice of new or old for around $50 for a J8. For a little more buy a Canon 50mm f1.8, a very fine lens. Good Luck. Joe
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Old 03-13-2017   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob-F View Post
OK, it's Brian Sweeney. He might be findable here, or over at photo.net. Oh, and There's John Van Stelten at The Focal Point in Colorado. I think they are both googleable. I would hold out for what you really want. You want a Jupiter, get a Jupiter!
Yes, I've heard of him... but I have no idea how to contact him. I saw his last activity here in RFF was in 2011... If anyone has his contact, please let me know.
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Old 03-13-2017   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferider View Post
Question is what is it worth to you ?

Four safer ways to do it:
1) get a serial # under 52xxx (that's what I have)
2) get an Amedeo adapter and a Contax Jupiter
3) get a Canon 50/1.5 instead - if you are OK with a couple of optical imperfections, this should be around or less than US 300.
4) get a Lomo Jupiter-3 instead.

Then again, all the above might be too expensive to you. Maybe get a chrome Canon 50/1.8 instead ?

Roland.
I have several Jupiter-8 lenses, ranging from 50-70s, the only one that did not require re-shimming was a 70s black one. The ones didn't focus well on "Leica standard" bodies didn't even focus well on FSU bodies.

To OP: if gambling on eBay is something you don't want to do, maybe try to buy one from a member here?
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Old 03-13-2017   #10
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I understand OP. Jupiter lenses have aluminium parts and very small, microscopic screws. Later, black, J-8 are easier to re-shim. But if you can't do it yourself and here is nobody left who will do it for money, does it have to be J-3, J-8? Where are LTM 50 1.4 Canons which are sold at the same price as J-3, were correctly made for Leica and regular service will take them for CLA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ferider View Post
safer ways to do it:
1) get a serial # under 52xxx (that's what I have)
First GOST to make it as official number 28,8 0,02 was in 1963.
https://www.zenitcamera.com/qa/qa-gost10332-63.html

On practice, before 1963, after and now it doesn't matter at all. It was all over from factories. This is why in the passport which was with every lens they had actual number. Same was for LTM FSU camera. With FSU LTM camera and FSU LTM lens purchased separately it was necessary to check and re-shim if needed.

But here is one more thing. I re-shimmed J-3 for M first. It was three extra shims. Later I took off two shims to make it for FED-2. After it I used it at M3 and M-E. It was not bad at all.

Wide open J-3 on M3 with two missing shims:


And another one, f2.8 or so:
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Old 03-13-2017   #11
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Yeah... I used to have a Canon 50mm 1.4 but sold it because I didn't really like it very much, and it was very big and heavy. The reason I like the Jupiters is because they are Sonnar lenses, with Sonnar characteristics.

For the rest of my more "serious" photography, I have a Summicron v4
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Old 03-13-2017   #12
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Thanks for the info on 50 1.4. I was considering it, but I'm not after big and heavy either. If you want it small it is hard to beat J-3 and J-8... Get J-3+, brass and 0.7m.
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Old 03-14-2017   #13
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Hi,

I don't know what the position is your side of the pond but here in the UK I'd check the lens on the M9 and then go to a repairer and ask them to adjust it as or if necessary. Any competent repairer ought to be able to do it.

Bitter experience tells me to check things first and not believe everything I read on the internet. Then get someone competent with the right equipment to sort it out. (We all sigh when camera shops close for good but seem to think it can't happen to repair shops, despite always recommending home made repairs and modifications: perhaps the DIY repirs keep them going.)

BTW, the old ex USSR cameras (Zorki) that I own made by KMZ say (in the instruction manuals) that the lenses have the standard registration for a screw thread Leica. I other wonder if people have read about them not working, tried to sort it out themselves then given up and sold the result to annoy someone else.

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Old 03-14-2017   #14
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f/2 on Bessa-R



f/2.8-ish on Canon L2



The lens itself on Canon L2


To be honest I have yet to see a J-8 that focuses well on FSU M39 bodies but not well on "Leica Standard" bodies (or the other way around). My experience is that they usually work well or fail on both groups.

Testing the lens on M9 is a good idea. However if you don't know someone with a M9, you can simplely use ground glass or matte-finish tape + magnifier on your film RF to test the focus accuracy. See Calibration part.
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Old 03-14-2017   #15
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I was trying ground glass for FED-2, Zorki and Leica camera, with macro lens on DSLR as most effective magnifier . Personally, it was not giving me confidence. I switched to taking pictures of focus scale target and scanning it to see what is better. One film with no factory shim, with factory shim and one, two, three extra shims. On the crop of the scan it is visible in millimeters. Ground glass, not so much....
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Old 03-14-2017   #16
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Kostya,
Try using reversed 28mm or at least 35mm lenses to view ground screen. I have been using this method for quite a few lenses. Latest one is 6cm f/1.5 Sonnar in LTM, that came to me not properly assembled. After disassembly and reassembly I used one of SLRs with 105mm lens to check infinity, and reversed 28mm on ground glass to check close focus. It worked like a charm.
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Old 03-14-2017   #17
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I bought a NOS Jupiter 8 from a Russian seller on ebay. I didn't want one with miles on it.
I am stunned by how good this lens is for $60 new! It focuses perfectly on LTM bodies, but not on M bodies. There it back focuses significantly. But the solution was easy, all I did was shoot it on my digital M, and see how much I would need to adjust focus by. This is even easier to do if you have an M with LiveView, you just compare where it focuses through the RF vs through the EVF. You don't even have to take a shot!
After that I have no reason to open up the lens, and potentially mess things up. Or pay someone more than the lens cost to mess it up for me!
Interestingly, the lens came with a spare shim in its hard case. I guess they know that it may need to be adjusted depending on what camera is to be used.
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Old 03-14-2017   #18
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Thanks, Sam. Will do. I have I-22 which I re-shimmed for M, but it has to be taken apart again for optics cleaning. I'll try Color Skopar 35 for reversed view.
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Old 03-14-2017   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huss View Post
I bought a NOS Jupiter 8 from a Russian seller on ebay. I didn't want one with miles on it.
I am stunned by how good this lens is for $60 new! It focuses perfectly on LTM bodies, but not on M bodies. There it back focuses significantly. But the solution was easy, all I did was shoot it on my digital M, and see how much I would need to adjust focus by. This is even easier to do if you have an M with LiveView, you just compare where it focuses through the RF vs through the EVF. You don't even have to take a shot!
After that I have no reason to open up the lens, and potentially mess things up. Or pay someone more than the lens cost to mess it up for me!
Interestingly, the lens came with a spare shim in its hard case. I guess they know that it may need to be adjusted depending on what camera is to be used.
Hi,

Interesting that it works with a screw thread body and not on an M, now I wonder if the adapter throws it out. It's odd, isn't it?

Regards, David
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Old 03-14-2017   #20
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For Redseele -- here's the link to Fedka's website, lists an e-mail address:
http://www.fedka.com/Frames/Main_Frame.htm
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Old 03-14-2017   #21
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Quote:
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For Redseele -- here's the link to Fedka's website, lists an e-mail address:
http://www.fedka.com/Frames/Main_Frame.htm
A few months ago I shot an email to Fedka to ask them if the Jupiters would focus accurately on a Leica body. He responded that the Jupiter 8 was made to Leica standards, so they should work correctly.

Perhaps the theory being thrown around about how in most cases (if the lenses are good) they should work is true.

If Fedka can provide a good Jupiter 8, then I'd totally buy it from them
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Old 03-14-2017   #22
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Brian Sweeney is active over at Leicaplace.com
He's sold a few of his shimmed J-3s and converted Sonnars on there.
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Old 03-15-2017   #23
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I must confess that my personal ability to focus is poorer than the J-8 (haven't tried J-3). I've never considered it an issue in practice with a 50mm/f2 , nor any kind of issue at all with a J-12 35/f2.8.

I have a Brian Sweeney adjusted/compounded prewar Contax Sonnar in J-3 mount. No doubt on that one - it's focal length is just off and the suggested issues with close versus long focus, and Contax versus Leica focussing, apply. BUT - I've not had issues there either. The focal shift with aperture is greater, but that's also not personally bothered me. Because I don't really think I'm going to nail exactly correct focus on a moving subject with these lenses, or any others I may have. And if the subject isn't moving, I probably am moving. For precise work on a tripod, I use some other focusing system. Direct vision off the focal plane (view camera or mirrorless digital) would be my preferred.

If you are a street shooter/ happy snapper type photographer, you won't care about the focus issues IMHO. If not, don't get a Sonnar. I think you know what I mean. The wide apertures (over 2.8) are "dreamy" at best in a Sonnar, which adds to the charm but also means that any correctly focused photo is still impacted by the spherical aberrations. There's not a precise focus for all light frequencies - there's a range across the spectrum. I would guess that the right filter would improve (and the wrong deteriorate) focus accuracy.

In short, get the Sonnar of your choice at a good price from your preferred website, and don't get caught up in the precision work. Or if it matters, learn the correction required - coz if you don't have time to correct then your accuracy is the issue, not the lens. And if precision really matters and you want a Sonnar, get a Canon 1.5 (not 1.4), or a Nikkor LTM.

Dante Stella has pages on the focal shift and the above lenses as well.
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Old 03-15-2017   #24
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Smile

Hey, I have asked Oleg of okvintagecamera.com and he replied that the lenses he sells come adjusted. Haven't bought anything from him so far though. But I think people on this forum have had good experiences with him.
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