Fungus
Old 10-08-2015   #1
wintoid
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Fungus

I have a Leica lens which has been in my collection for a few years, and I haven't used much. I decided to sell up, and took it to a reputable camera shop in the UK for a commission sale. The shopkeeper inspected the lens, and said that there's a small amount of fungus on the back of the lens, and therefore he didn't want to sell it for me.

What would you do in my position? Should I sell the lens cheap, declaring the issue, or should I get it cleaned? The shopkeeper said cleaning it would be expensive.

Thanks,

Simon
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Old 10-08-2015   #2
Steve Bellayr
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IMHO: Cut your losses and sell it cheap. Fungus can not always be removed & it does cause etching on the glass. A basic cleaning is around $100 US + shipping.
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Old 10-08-2015   #3
CameraQuest
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depends upon the value of the lens

the higher the value, the more sense it makes to clean the fungus
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Old 10-08-2015   #4
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Generally I have had very poor experiences with trying to have fungus cleaned, one lens even being ruined by the attempt.

You say you don't love it. Dump it and forget it.
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Old 10-09-2015   #5
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Thanks all for your input
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Old 10-09-2015   #6
Ko.Fe.
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Which lens?
Some are easy to get to the element which needs to be cleaned. I have success with easy to make at home mix described in availible on the internet Leica repair document.

The shop tactic is understandable. They want to get it cheap from you, fix it and sell with margin.
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Old 10-09-2015   #7
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In decades of photography I've had two lenses that developed fungus. Was able to get both lenses apart, and thoroughly cleaned, but in both cases the fungus had etched the coating or the glass of the lens, and though the image quality was better after cleaning, it wasn't nearly as good as the lens was pre-fungus.

Super careful with storage of lenses after that.
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Old 10-09-2015   #8
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I agree with the others, sell as is and move on.

It can be surprising what people on Ebay will pay for lenses in poor condition even when they are accurately and negatively described. There are plenty out there who believe they have the ability to restore or repair the unrepairable.
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Old 10-09-2015   #9
Moto-Uno
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^ Oh Ye of little faith !
Or maybe it's just me dreaming, 'šuz I just bought a pretty awfully hazed lens.
Wish me luck with the unrepairable
Peter
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Old 10-09-2015   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moto-Uno View Post
^ Oh Ye of little faith !
Or maybe it's just me dreaming, 'šuz I just bought a pretty awfully hazed lens.
Wish me luck with the unrepairable
Peter
Peter,

Haze is different than fungus. If you can get the lens apart, I think you should be able to clean up the haze and have a good lens.

Best,
-Tim
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Old 10-09-2015   #11
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In my experience the fungus eats the coating, not the glass. I've cleaned uncoated lenses that had a ton of fungus (1800s lenses) to become sparkling clean. Every time. But the coatings are what matters. One technique I've heard to at least "stop" fungus is to put the lens in bright sunlight for a day. Who knows? But for selling, you have to take the loss, or put it on Ebay with it mentioned.
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Old 10-09-2015   #12
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There are plenty of so-called fungus removal options but even if you can get to it and remove it there is the etching. But most important there are still fungal spores floating around in the lens unless it is completely stripped down and given a good cleaning. This is why it is so expensive to have it done. So if you clean the fungus, it'll eventually come back..

One other thing about fungus is it can spread to other lens..

My advise is to dump the lens..
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Old 10-09-2015   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goamules View Post
In my experience the fungus eats the coating, not the glass. I've cleaned uncoated lenses that had a ton of fungus (1800s lenses) to become sparkling clean. Every time. But the coatings are what matters. One technique I've heard to at least "stop" fungus is to put the lens in bright sunlight for a day. Who knows? But for selling, you have to take the loss, or put it on Ebay with it mentioned.
This is true but fungus excretes acid which etches the lens..

I've never seen fungus on uncoated lens. Old lens can get atmospheric hazing and coating such as cigarette hazing or crust from water contamination..
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Old 10-09-2015   #14
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Yeah, whatever is on those ancient uncoated lenses, it always cleans off very well. I read somewhere that the fungus can use the minerals in the coating, otherwise, it won't form. If you think about it, usually you see the fungus on the glass, not the inside of the metal barrel.
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Old 10-09-2015   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goamules View Post
If you think about it, usually you see the fungus on the glass, not the inside of the metal barrel.
To get fungus you first have to have fungal spores and the spores can lay dormant for some time before migrating to the glass where it eats the lens coating.

Think of it this way...no matter how clean your house is, there is still dust particles floating in the air and that is how the spores can hang around.

All of the reputable lens repairmen will strip down the entire lens and clean everything including metal/plastic parts when fungus is present.
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