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Sony NEX-EA50 (all variants)
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 02:04 AM   #1
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Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Hi Guys

I got an "el cheapo" FOTGA Nikon to Nikon adapter off eBay and have been playing with it ..it is supposed to work with either G series or DX series lenses and has a ring with a little piece of threaded rod inside that is supposed to open the iris by pushing the preview lever... If I clip on a DX lens it all works fine but the lever position is wrong ..it located too high and even at maximum travel (open iris) it doesn't quite make it to the lens actuator ... Before I rip it to bits and do some extensive mods on it is there maybe something I am missing here .. I line up the lens and adapter dots and it rotates and locks perfectly except the little bit of rod seems to be a good inch from the preview actuator .... It was only $15 so I'm more than happy to hack it to bits ..either extend the slot or add a liitle piece onto the rod

Anyone tried one of these adapters?? Nikon lenses don't have an aperture ring so as is it's sitting at F22 which won't really work too well!!

Chris
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 02:48 AM   #2
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

A little update here

If you strain your muscles you can actually keep rotating the adapter on the Nikon lens so that issue is solved ..I don't like the idea it's so tight!!

Now on the camera side it doesn't want to rotate and also seems awfully tight and I don't want to damage a $4000 camera with a $15 adapter ..I think the casting specs are just very sloppy!! I think I might attack the base that goes into the camera side with some very fine water paper and increase the gap until it goes into the camera without any major effort ... if I ruin the adapter no big deal ..rather that than the camera!!

Chris
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 02:49 AM   #3
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Chris.

This is just a long shot guess. Is your adaptor fitting to the lens one third of a turn out of place. Some of the early 35mm groundglass adaptor alternative Nikon mounts would do this. It would put the lever that inch or so out of whack with the lens lever itself. The clue that it happened was that the pin lock would not click into place.

Even earlier iterations did not lock with a pin but relied simply on a wedge effect achieved by tapering the lugs on the soft aluminium mount. It was some of those mounts which would accept a lens offered up a third of a turn out of position. Also the amount of turn before the lens came up tight was variable and eventually the soft alluminium would wear and the lens could jump through to the next position.

It seems to me that your adaptor may have a wedge style mount if you are able to continue turning the lens through to correct registration with the lever. You might need to buy a genuine Nikon ring from Camera Electronic. I think they have a few spares in 4-screw or 5-screw pattern. It gets a bit complicated because you also need the little ring spring to go behind the mount ring. The lens control system may be occupying the this space.

Is the actuator is a lever and actuating handle on a sliding ring inside a channel behind the flange ring? If the Nikon ring that has been used is a later genuine five-screw ring or patterned after it, the ring might have been assembled one span out of position clockwise.

If I am sending you on a goosechase, my apologies in advance.

If you are going to dress the rear faces of the lugs, you may find it handy to use the 600 grit paper in strips around a chocwedge stick. Dress the surface a liitle, attempt to fit a lens and observe the shiny mark the lens lugs make and dress only those marks until you can progressively twist the lens furthur through the rotation. If you just dress them all without doing this, you may end up with a sloppy mount, loose on one side, yet feels tight. Err on the side of a little tightness because the roughness of the metal after you have finished will polish down with use fairly quickly.

No doubt you are already aware given your long experience but for other contenders out there who might be following this thread, take care to do a really good cleanup. Silicon Carbide grains loosened off wet and dry paper scratch a lens badly if they get into your cleaning stuff.

You may recall me testing an AGUS35 35mm adaptor on a JVC HD111 way back when.

Last edited by Bob Hart; April 22nd, 2013 at 03:08 AM. Reason: error
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 04:45 AM   #4
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Hi Bob

On the first instance you are 100% correct!! I found it is indeed a wedge mount and although tight, you can turn the adapter on the lens so it aligns and works correctly.

On the NEX side it still never makes it around to the notch that locks it in place so the tolerances are way out ...I'm using exactly what you suggested with some 600 grit and then using 1200 to polish it off.. my only issue now it to decide which section to sand down ...there is the upper ring with the "tabs" around it and then the base around the cylindrical ring .. It's hard to determine whether the base needs to be reduced or whether the top of the cylindrical ring is actually too high! It seems to insert nicely into the camera body which should say now that the top lip to base is correct but yes, I do see a few slid marks on my newly finished surface so those must be high spots that are causing the adapter not to turn without force.

I shall work on it some more and thanks for the great tips

Chris
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 07:13 AM   #5
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Hey Chris,

I just received a novoflex adaptor the other day. It cost around $220 delivered. While i have only had a quick play. I put a few different lenses on it and it feels like an original part. It fits and clicks into place with no play.

I dont know what sort of lenses you have but with most of ours costing over 2k i decided to give the cheap adaptors a miss. I would suggest you bin the cheap version and bite the bullet and pay a little more. I would hate to hear something got damaged because of a cheap adaptor. On a shoot if you need to change from the stock lens to one with the adaptor you just want to do it quick with no issues of fit etc. Im really happy with the novoflex and while its such a basic peice of gear i feel confident in the tolerences and quality that it is worth the extra.
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 08:41 AM   #6
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Thanks Justin

Did you buy yours locally?? I'm using Nikon DX lenses so I need an adapter that has an aperture ring too as the DX lenses don't have one at all.

Chris
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 11:06 AM   #7
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Chris.

If you are getting flange face-to-face contact, then I would hope that the adaptor at the NEX end is resting fully home and you are having the same resistance to rotation due the wedge machining having left the lugs a little thick. A quick check to see if you are getting face-to-face contact will be to cover one or the other face with black whiteboard marker ink and see if it rubs off continuously around the face when offered up. If the mount is binding on the centre shoulder which carries the lugs, you will observe a distinct region where there is no face-to-face contact.

Geniune Nikon lenses sometimes have a short centering shoulder of about 1mm or even less and a narrower clearance rearwards of it to where the lugs commence and sometimes a slightly wider diameter which represents the valleys between the lugs. These valleys may have been milled in a separate operation on your adaptor. These days most jobs are done on a CNC machine which most times gets it right unless it is allowed to drift from spec.

If this was set up on a different machine, then the valleys may not be concentric with the front shoulder. The lens may then be forced a little cockeyed in the mount. Something similar might be happening with the adaptor at the NEX end. Use the same trick of black whiteboard marker ink to see if there are some high spots rubbed off clear. If there are any, they will 180 degrees opposite any removed ink on the flange face. If the flange is sitting in face-to-face contact, there will be no need to dress out the valleys.

If you are going to dress any metal off the lugs at the NEX end of the adaptor, providing the flange face is sitting flat, you should only take metal off the front face of the adaptor lugs at the NEX end, not the rear like you did for the lens end.

Be careful to check if any electrical pins in the NEX are not going to short out on the rear of the Fotga adaptor. If in doubt tape the pins over. This killed a few Canon XLs over time.

If you are after a Nikon 12mm - 24mm DX zoom, I have one I can part with. It was limited use for a 35mm adaptor as it is f4 constant and as I discovered, has no aperture ring.

Last edited by Bob Hart; April 22nd, 2013 at 11:20 AM. Reason: error
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 05:31 PM   #8
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
Thanks Justin

Did you buy yours locally?? I'm using Nikon DX lenses so I need an adapter that has an aperture ring too as the DX lenses don't have one at all.

Chris
Hi Chris, bought on ebay with seller internetfotojank it came from Germany and took around one week. I just checked and couldnt find one at that price on ebay but a week ago there were a few so im sure they will be back. The stores from Germany were the cheapest. It has an aperture ring too. Our lenses are fx as i shoot on 2 d3s's but i only have a couple of lenses which have the aperture ring so most of our lenses needed the ring on the adaptor. I havent had a huge amount of time to test but to fit is just like there isnt even an adaptor there and shooting at 1.4 or even 2.8 transforms the camera!

I paid $208 plus $12 postage. There was one a few dollars cheaper but had less feedback rating on ebay.
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Old April 22nd, 2013, 07:15 PM   #9
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Re: Any one using/tried a Fotga adapter?

Thanks for all the information Bob

I will play with that side. If it doesn't work I will toss it in the bin..simple as that!! I have a Tokina 11-16 F2.8 Zoom for my NikonD90 that I mainly use for Real Estate stills so I don't really need a super wide..the idea behind the NEX adapter was to be able to run around with the Tokina on my EA-50 on my stedicam .. lots of wide angle and plenty of DOF ... It was an alternative to buying the Sony 10mm - 20mm E-Mount zoom at over $1000 which I might not have any use for. Sadly I don't get a huge amount of call for Real Estate flythrus in Perth compared with the Eastern States.

Thanks Justin .. I'll take a look at some German eBay sites ..there is also a Aussie distributor who has them for $256.00 in NSW

Chris
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