A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

PENTAX dslr and slr macro photos including Extreme macro
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19 Jul '13 Fri Jul 19, 2013 20:02    
darkskies
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Post A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

Yes...everyone sighs.....I too have butchered a zoom, bought myself a Nikkor EL 50mm/f2.8, and a flash.

Thanks to a lot of help, advice and encouragement from Charlotte, I managed to get to try the set-up for the 1st time yesterday resulting in abject failure.

With further encouragement last night, I tried again today and managed a few shots that show, to me at least, that I'm getting closer to the techniques required to do the set-up justice. Here are the 2 that I feel will give me the encouragement to keep trying to match the fantastic shots that Charlotte has been dazzling us with.

1. An upside down Gatekeeper butterfly, uncropped




2. A very, very small, upside down fly, cropped to about 1800 px square

 
 
 
 
  
19 Jul '13 Fri Jul 19, 2013 20:48    
layingback
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

Well you certainly have magnification.

What did you butcher?

What problems of technique are you encountering? Charlotte makes it seem so easy.


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19 Jul '13 Fri Jul 19, 2013 20:59    
darkskies
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

- layingback

Well you certainly have magnification.

What did you butcher?

What problems of technique are you encountering? Charlotte makes it seem so easy.


Same zoom as Charlotte, the FA 35-80.

How do you know Charlotte makes it seem so easy? Laughing

 
 
 
 
  
19 Jul '13 Fri Jul 19, 2013 21:34    
sasastro
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

I'm just impressed with the magnification


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19 Jul '13 Fri Jul 19, 2013 21:44    
Charlotte
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

You got it sussed then I see. Cool

'tisn't easy, but as you said you've seen the possibilities and that will spur you on. Very Happy You've got the focus OK but I think you could probably get a bit more DOF with practice.
You need to focus into the object you're photographing this will bring more into DOF. When focusing with this set up you can only see narrow DOF and it takes a bit of practice to judge the right spot.

There's not a lot wrong with the butterfly though - I'm chuffed to bits for you well done. Very Happy

Charlotte x


It does get easier with practice I promise you DS.


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20 Jul '13 Sat Jul 20, 2013 07:11    
cardiff_gareth
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

What's the butchering technique then??

On my phone screen both look great Smile


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20 Jul '13 Sat Jul 20, 2013 08:17    
mannesty
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

- cardiff_gareth

What's the butchering technique then??

Remove the glass from a F or FA zoom lens to create an auto focus, auto exposure, auto flash extension tube, then reverse mount a prime lens onto that. A prime in the range 28mm - 50mm seems to work best.

It facilitates open aperture composition, manual focusing, and open aperture metering for extreme macro images.

The reversed lens remains wide open and you can stop down either on the 'butchered' lens or the camera body. Simples.


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20 Jul '13 Sat Jul 20, 2013 16:36    
cardiff_gareth
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

Ahh, will try it out! So a cheap 35-80, remove all glass, don't touch aperture iris and then reverse a manual 50mm on it


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20 Jul '13 Sat Jul 20, 2013 16:58    
mannesty
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

- cardiff_gareth

Ahh, will try it out! So a cheap 35-80, remove all glass, don't touch aperture iris and then reverse a manual 50mm on it

Got it in one.

I had an old dead FA 28-80 (non-SMC) lens kicking around and it works fine. The most difficult part was getting the contacts back together, but taking them off of a working lens may not be necessary. I had to take mine apart because there was something inside rattling about.

The moving part of the zoom on mine is a bit floppy because the part that was rattling about was one of the guides for the zoom barrel and its retaining screw. I wasn't prepared to take it apart any further to fix it for fear of damaging the diaphragm.


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21 Jul '13 Sun Jul 21, 2013 08:54    
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

FA 35-80, FA 28-80 and Charlotte's mention of a A 50 - which is better? Now that some of you have tried. Zoom, prime, a longer or shorter lens? And does a lens which extends further when focused work better or worse?

The auto exposure advantage I can grasp. but the reference to auto focus above has me a little confused ... How can a lens with air for glass focus? Or does it provide a means of focusing by physically moving the reversed lens away from the camera? Is an F or FA lens necessary to enable this, or can an A lens do the same?

And finally I presume it should work with pre-K5 bodies?

TIA!


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21 Jul '13 Sun Jul 21, 2013 11:17    
Charlotte
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

It works on the K20.

I haven't tried an 'A' lens yet because I only have two of them and they're too good to risk mucking up.
I'm looking for a knackered one, I'm not 100% certain it will work on a Prime because I'm not sure how close the aperture will get to the front of the reversed lens. If it's too far away you get vignetting.

I'm happy with the FA 35-80 - I can't vouch for the metering or Auto focus though as I haven't used either. In manual the hexagon shows up but I tend to ignore that anyway because what it focuses on is not necessarily what I want in focus.

The reason for wanting to try a prime is that it will be shorter and therefore the magnification won't be so great and I could use it for butterflies and larger insects without them being so 'in your face'.


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22 Jul '13 Mon Jul 22, 2013 07:12    
mannesty
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

The zoom part, once butchered, is of little use. You'll need to find the zoom distance that produces the least vignetting.

As for focussing, it's the cameras electronics that determines when a shot is in focus, not the lens.

I mentioned it above because it does work, but as this is extreme macro we are talking about, it's not likely that the auto focus capability will be used but it's there if you need/want it.

Which prime focal length you choose will depend on how much magnification you want and how it performs. When reversed, a 28mm will give much higher magnification than a 50mm at the expense of DOF. Using a 28mm it's very narrow, but that gives the opportunity to experiment with photo stacking.


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22 Jul '13 Mon Jul 22, 2013 19:56    
darkskies
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

Sorry I haven't been back until now but I've been away for the weekend. Good to see questions that have been asked have been well answered.

I can't imagine how AF would be any use because, as Charlotte says, the point of focus must be precisely decided on when taking the shot. At this distance manual focus works so much more easily. I've found that, even though I've taken very few shots, and even less successful ones, that selecting a shutter speed, ISO setting, and strength of the flash is a small art but comes relatively quickly. Actually, I really keep the shutter speed and aperture the same and just alter the strength of the flash (slightly) and ISO to compensate for lack of light. That keeps it simple and the results tend to be more standard. The slither of dof you get when you look through the viewfinder is difficult to manage, but it's coming with practice. Remember that Charlotte and I have been taking shots hand-held. I haven't yet tried using a tripod with or without flash. tricky to set up a tripod when you are so close and dof is so tiny. You'd probably need rails.

Getting the front glass out is quite easy. The back glass is much more difficult and a bit frustrating, but once I'd slept on putting back the mount and the contacts i worked out an easier way of doing it.

Please ask if anyone wants to do it and we'll give you some advice.

I would prefer a shorter zoom and/or prime but I'm very happy playing with this for a while.

 
 
 
 
  
22 Jul '13 Mon Jul 22, 2013 21:06    
SteveEveritt
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

I'm still waiting for my butcherable lens to show up, I have sent the hat to its rightful owner on the promise I'd have the money returned but that hasn't happened and the 28-80 hasn't showed either Sad
So I am having a play with a Pentax A 50 f1.7 attached to the camera and I tried my FA50 f1.4 reversed onto it but wasn't happy with how close I was getting so reversed on the 35mm F2.

Excuse my ignorance but I don't understand why stopping down the 50mm (attached to the camera) gives me a circle whereas if I leave it at say f2.8 I don't get it. Confused

1. Woodlouse



2. Harvest Spider


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22 Jul '13 Mon Jul 22, 2013 21:41    
layingback
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Post Re: A New Member of the Butchered Zoom Club

I would imagine it's because it's effectively stopped down too much. Light travels in straight lines. So think of the aperture of the attached lens creating a tube from the camera to the reversed lens. If this virtual tube is narrower in diameter than the focused image/beam of light from the reversed lens, then you are going to miss some of the image - a black ring will result.

Of course this virtual tube won't be of a uniform cross-section, it'll taper. Which I believe is why Charlotte spoke of the position (distance) of the camera operated aperture relative to the reversed lens being significant.


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