my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Started Nov 6, 2017 | Discussions
frozenshiver New Member • Posts: 3
my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly
24

Hi there

A few days ago I got a problem with my K-30. Until now I didn't knew, that this seems to be a common problem with the K-30 / K-50 series.

Pictures I have taken were totally underexposed. So obviously there must have been an error with the aperture control. Also in live view an underexposed preview was shown.

I just did the following and since then, this error never ever occurred again:

1.) Go to the camera menu to button customization and define the raw/FX button to "optical preview".

2.) Use Manual or AV mode and dial in an aperture other than open wide.

3.) Press the raw/FX button 10 to 20 times ( I did so). Every press you should hear the aperture lever working.

4.) Take some shots. At this point my K-30 did correct exposures with some exceptions. So I repeated the procedure until no wrong exposure occurred. I had to repeat step 3.) 3 times. Since then my camera works without any errors.

Maybe I was just lucky that this trick brought my copy back to working condition. Maybe if you have the same problem give it a try and your camera comes back to life again.

Cheers

Pentax K-30 Pentax K-50
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ozdean
ozdean Forum Pro • Posts: 24,957
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Handy to know - Thanks.

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Regards Dean - Capturing Creation
N.B. All my Images are Protected by Copyright

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The Squirrel Mafia
The Squirrel Mafia Regular Member • Posts: 391
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

It's a good start at trying to resolve the issue. Far easier than opening the camera & doing a fix & far cheaper than sending it out for a fix. This could be a great temporary fix for some.

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halievski Contributing Member • Posts: 602
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

my hat is off... very cool indeed, you just offered filing the solenoid with raw button    What help me lately is the set of Japan made AA batteries and few series in hi speed continuous mode till few good frames appear.  However, I have to say that your way is apparently is the best as of today to work around aperture failure in K30 / K50. Make youtube video, please

regards,

alex

peterpainter Regular Member • Posts: 467
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Thanks - I'll certainly give this a try if (when?) my K50 goes belly up!

I wonder if this has been discussed on Pentaxforums....

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regards,
Pete

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DougOB
DougOB Contributing Member • Posts: 717
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Noteworthy fix.

I am thinking that doing it gradually might make it more efficient.  For example if you have a f2.8 lens then do 10 shots at f4, then 10 shots at f8, then 10 shots at f16.  The smaller the aperture the more movement is needed.  Just a thought...

Doug

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OP frozenshiver New Member • Posts: 3
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

peterpainter wrote:

Thanks - I'll certainly give this a try if (when?) my K50 goes belly up!

I wonder if this has been discussed on Pentaxforums....

Hello Peter

I just shared this fix with pentaxforums.com under repairs and warranty service. I don't know if someone else did already this way to fix this problem or reported about it . I just want to make sure that there is something to try, before someone with the same error sends his or her camera in for a repair. If the fix does not solve the error you can still send your camera for a repair.

Cheers

BrianA2 Regular Member • Posts: 118
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly
7

Thank you frozenshiver,

My K-30 showed the aperture problem about 18 months ago after it had been idle for 3 months. I had decided it was not worth fixing and put it aside, and am now using a K3-ii. However there have been times when I would have liked to be carrying a second body, for which the K-30 would be very useful.

I just tried your suggested fix, and the K-30 now seems to be working perfectly.

Many thanks.

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noel2 Contributing Member • Posts: 954
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

A stiff mechanical coupling somewhere ? Actuating it a few times usually solves the problem.

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PIngp0NGMW Regular Member • Posts: 290
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Good to know!  I recently cracked my K-S2 open when it had the aperture problem.  I am going to remember this post if it dies on me again in the future.  It would be great to fix the problem without having to open up the camera.

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flektogon
flektogon Veteran Member • Posts: 3,099
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

PIngp0NGMW wrote:

Good to know! I recently cracked my K-S2 open when it had the aperture problem. I am going to remember this post if it dies on me again in the future. It would be great to fix the problem without having to open up the camera.

Yes, it might be a way to fix quickly, though temporarily, this problem. However, the permanent fix is to replace this crappy, chinese/green solenoid part with the original (i.e. a part used in the previous cameras, like K-x, K-r), white Japanese part.

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Regards,
Peter

Jal-TO New Member • Posts: 1
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

I tried your aperture-problem fix and the immediate result was that it fixed the problem. Thank you.

Is there any information about the efficacy of this fix over the longer term, that is to say, is it temporary or will it last?

The reason I'm asking is that I'm considering upgrading my lenses and if, in fact, the camera is toast and it's just a matter of time before this fix will no longer work then I might choose to change systems now rather than later. And I'll certainly choose to NOT buy new lenses for it.

Has anybody had long-term success with this fix?

And, if anyone has had it repaired by Pentax or another repair service, what did it cost?

I'd appreciate your responses. Thank you.

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The Squirrel Mafia
The Squirrel Mafia Regular Member • Posts: 391
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly
1

Jal-TO wrote:

I tried your aperture-problem fix and the immediate result was that it fixed the problem. Thank you.

Is there any information about the efficacy of this fix over the longer term, that is to say, is it temporary or will it last?

The reason I'm asking is that I'm considering upgrading my lenses and if, in fact, the camera is toast and it's just a matter of time before this fix will no longer work then I might choose to change systems now rather than later. And I'll certainly choose to NOT buy new lenses for it.

Has anybody had long-term success with this fix?

And, if anyone has had it repaired by Pentax or another repair service, what did it cost?

I'd appreciate your responses. Thank you.

This fix will probably be useful for a while, but it's going to get to the point where you'll start getting some random dark frames even shortly after performing this quick fix. Out of all the quick fixes that I've seen online, this is probably the easiest one to do, but it seems like all of them eventually fail.

The only proven permanent solution is to replace the "green" aperture motor with a "white" one. You have to buy a used "white" motor or find a new one online & replace it yourself or have someone else do it for you. If you send it back to Ricoh, they're going to charge you a lot of money & they will simply replace the "green" aperture motor with another "green" one that will probably have a 50/50 chance of failing again.

I replaced the "green" aperture motor with a "white" one in my black K-50. I've shot more than 5,000 trouble free images since then. I replaced it in August of 2017. It only takes about +-3 hours to do if you have a small soldering iron & some small screw drivers. It will require a bit of patience too. You can find the fix over at Pentax Forums, but do keep in mind that the capacitor in the K-30 will be exposed a bit more once you open the camera. Make sure not to touch it, or you'll have a shocking experience.

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sredd68 Contributing Member • Posts: 888
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Can't comment on how long the fix will last but to have it replaced in my wife's k50 cost me 225.00  I had it done at a local camera shop, not by Pentax. They've done repairs for me before and I never had a problem afterwards

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WiktorC New Member • Posts: 1
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Just registered to say thanks!

Works for my k-50, dont know for how long, but its much faster than disassembly.

I'm prepared for some screwdrivering, but since perfect is the enemy of good, why do this

mfdaustrey New Member • Posts: 1
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

This is great if it works for you. I got mine working with AA batteries and a burst of shots. Gradually the problem returned. This seems to be working on the same principle, but not racking up the shutter count.

My only negative thought is that it is not the stopping down to minimum aperture that is the problem, after all that is what is causing the black images, but rather the opening up of the aperture. If this loosening up works great  but it doesn't necessarily slide the overriding problem

kanno New Member • Posts: 2
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

Had the same problem with my K30. Tried this method and it worked. But the problem returned so I did it again. Worked again. But after a while same again, dark pics.

After repeating it a few times I could not losen it anymore. I then gave my K30 for repair but it wasn't the solenoid alone which was damaged but the complete diaphragm block!

Repair would have been to expensive, luckily I got my K30 back and tried to replace the solenoid with a white one I got from a defunct K20D. No luck. I ordered the diaphragm block. I unsoldered the green solenoid which was to be found there and installed the white solenoid of the K20D and then built this modified diaphragm block back inside my K30.
Now it works fine. I could have saved a lot of work (and money) if I would have changed the solenoid first.

ChrisV87 New Member • Posts: 13
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

DUDE! You are the man! This totally worked on my k-50. THANK YOU for this post. You just kept me from needing to file down the aperture control as seen in a few youtube videos on fixing this problem. I hope this post gets a lot of views

MEA2112 New Member • Posts: 1
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

A huge thanks to frozenshiver for posting the fix!! I can at least use my K-30 until I get another Pentax that uses a different/better aperture motor/solenoid. Anyone know which models before and/or after the K-30 that use a better aperture motor/solenoid?

DS21 Senior Member • Posts: 2,304
Re: my fix of the K-30 aperture problem without disassembly

MEA2112 wrote:

A huge thanks to frozenshiver for posting the fix!! I can at least use my K-30 until I get another Pentax that uses a different/better aperture motor/solenoid. Anyone know which models before and/or after the K-30 that use a better aperture motor/solenoid?

All K-7/5/3/1 models are fine, as apparently is the KP.

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